Marshalls—the popular retailer owned by TJX Companies—has always been considered by many pet parents a dog-friendly store. Sadly though, in some of their branches, you only get to bring your dog with you if the manager’s okay with it.
There are several policies on the subject, even though the said policies haven’t been “officially” written up, and those policies often vary, depending on the store’s location.
What is Marshall’s Dog Policy?
First off, Marshalls has never had general policies that govern all their stores. And while we’re not completely sure why that is, we think it probably has something to do with the fact that our nation’s different states and counties have their own laws.
What we do know for certain is that each store comes with its own set of policies, and they are normally enacted by the branch manager.
If the local jurisdiction permits dogs to enter any given store, chances are your nearest Marshall store does as well. But if the county laws are against it, you’ll have to call the manager first, instead of just showing up with your dog. It’s worth noting that service animals are typically exempt from such laws, as per federal guidelines.1
To avoid confusion, we’ll have to remind you that an emotional support dog is not considered a service dog. And that’s mainly because providing comfort to an individual is not the same as performing tasks for someone who’s disabled.
What Qualifies as a Service Dog?
Service dogs are usually given special treatment because they’ve been specifically trained to perform various tasks on behalf of their owners. Their ultimate goal is normally to improve the individual’s quality of life. And the tasks being performed can be anything, as long as they directly pertain to the individual’s disability.
Marshalls will most likely say yes to anyone who wishes to enter the store with a service animal, on condition that it doesn’t create any undue hardship.
Then again, it’s not all that simple, as sometimes you may need to prove that your dog is actually a service animal and not just a pet. They’ll need a letter from a reputable and licensed health professional or any other form of proof that you’re willing to provide.
Side Note: Disclosing your disability is definitely not a requirement, as it might sound like discrimination.
It’s also crucial to remember that they have the right to ask you to leave the establishment at any time, should they feel like your dog is being too aggressive or acting in a disruptive manner. Besides protecting your rights as a citizen, they are also obligated to ensure all their customers feel safe whenever they are shopping.
Is Marshalls an Off-Leash Store?
If you’ve ever shopped with a dog before, you already know most stores in the country have strict rules with regard to this subject. And it’s for a good reason, seeing as dogs are known to easily get excited about little things.
Marshall’s store policy dictates that all dogs must be on a leash at all times.
Why Are Some Marshalls Stores Against Shopping with Pets?
Some people are really scared of dogs. And according to health experts, this disorder is called cynophobia. If you walk into a Marshalls store with your dog, and one of the shoppers happens to be frightened of dogs, they’ll immediately leave and never come back.
While this might not be a problem that would affect you, it actually affects the store, as they are losing a customer.
Trying to avoid dealing with issues created by dogs that haven’t been properly socialized is the other reason. You can only imagine how difficult it is to navigate any store with an ill-mannered dog, especially if the shoppers at the store don’t want to be around them.
We also have the risk of property damage. It’s funny how we tend to forget that dogs are just as curious as cats are. They like to chew on various items, trying to figure out what they do or if they are edible, plus they shed fur and may even pee! This is likely the reason why the Food and Drug Administration guidelines prohibit places like restaurants from allowing people to enter their establishments with pets.
Tips On How to Shop at Marshalls with Your Dog
You have to be ready for anything while shopping with your dog at Marshalls. We found the following tips to be useful:
Marshalls doesn’t have an issue with you shopping with your dog. In fact, they normally encourage it, as long as you promise to have it on a leash while you’re there.
But if your dog starts to exhibit some disruptive or aggressive behavior, they’ll feel compelled to ask you to leave. Protecting all shoppers is and has always been their top priority. And there’s no compromise on that.
- See also: Does Nordstrom Allow Dogs?