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Does Fleet Farm Allow Dogs? 2024 Pet Policy

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By Nicole Cosgrove

dog in the shopping mall

Fleet Farm is an American retail chain and has over 40 stores in Minnesota, South Dakota, North Dakota, Iowa, and Wisconsin. However, they only allow dogs in their Wisconsin stores, provided they are well-behaved and on a leash.

Pets are not welcome in Fleet Farm stores located in other states. But exceptions are allowed for service animals.

Are you looking forward to an enjoyable shopping experience with your pup? We tell you what’s in store for you below and offer tips on making your visit to Fleet Farm successful. Let’s dive in.

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Fleet Farm’s Official Pet Policy

As mentioned, Fleet Farm will only allow you to bring your dog to their Wisconsin Stores.

The difference with Wisconsin is Senate Bill 2981. Voters passed the bill in 2021, permitting some retail stores to allow dogs in their establishments. It is upon the management of each Fleet Farm store to allow or refuse any dog on their premises. They also reserve the right to remove any dog from the store.

Although each store has unique rules, there are some common expectations. For instance, only calm and house-trained dogs are welcome.

Fleet Farm also requires all dogs to be on a leash at least four feet long. Handlers should never leave the pups unattended or place them in shopping carts. Moreover, cleaning up after your pup is your responsibility. You are also liable for any injuries or any damage to property that your furry friend causes.

two leashed dogs at a shopping mall
Image By: heychli, Shutterstock

Service and Support Animals in Fleet Farm

Service dogs are specially trained animals that assist people with mental and physical disabilities. They can perform various tasks for their handlers, such as guiding blind people. The Minnesota, South Dakota, North Dakota, and Iowa stores only allow service animals. However, some may differ in their definition and understanding of the term.

According to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), emotional support animals don’t fall under the service animal category. Therefore, not all Fleet Farm stores will allow them.

But since it is an offense to interfere with the rights of a disabled person, Fleet Farm is unlikely to ask questions. The store manager can only step in if the dog disrupts other customers.

They could query the service dog’s eligibility but cannot ask to see the dog’s certification. Questioning the handler about their disability is also not permissible under the law.

Are all Service Animals Allowed in Fleet Farm?

Service animals are considered a legal and human necessity since they help people with disabilities live self-sufficient lifestyles. Therefore, they are all allowed in all Fleet Farm stores.

Moreover, the ADA Act protects the rights of those who require the help of such animals. As such, Fleet Farm cannot deny them entry.

There are some rules the handlers must follow, though. For instance, they should keep the service dog under control at all times. A harness or leash is recommended. But signs and voice commands are acceptable in cases where the handler cannot use constraints.

Fleet Farm must consider the safety and security of other shoppers. Therefore, they could ask you to leave the dog outside if it can’t be controlled. In such cases, a shopping assistant could be called to help instead.

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What to Expect at Fleet Farm

A trip to Fleet Farm can be a memorable experience for you and your dog. Apart from enjoying your pup’s company while shopping, you can take advantage of the opportunity to replenish its food and supplies.

Fleet Farm sells a variety of dog products.

They include the following.
  • Food
  • Grooming products
  • Health products
  • Collars, harnesses, and leashes
  • Training aids
  • Clothing and shoes
  • Feeding and water supplies

The advantage of taking your furry friend with you while buying their supplies is that you don’t have to guess their size. You can also tell whether they like something on the spot, saving you a return trip.

American Pit bull Terrier dog inside a shopping cart trolley
Image By: ravipat, Shutterstock

How to Make Your Visit to Fleet Farm Successful

You can enjoy shopping alongside your furry friend at Fleet Farm. The dog could help you pick out items, and you can grab some of its supplies while at it.

However, the day could also be a disaster if your pup becomes a nuisance, disrupting the peace of other shoppers. It would be sad if the management was forced to ask you to leave.

Luckily, there are several measures you can take to keep your pup under control. We discuss them below.

Call Your Local Store First

All Fleet Farm stores in Michigan are dog-friendly. However, the rules and regulations may vary from one store to another.

For instance, some stores don’t allow dogs in certain sections. It would, therefore, be better to call the store first, especially if you are visiting the place for the first time.

Additionally, not all stores in the five states allow support animals. So, it is advisable to consult to avoid being sent away.

Ensure Fido Relieves Itself Outside

Fleet Farm stores require handlers to clean after their dogs. But although the call of nature is unavoidable, we can all agree that scooping up your dog’s mess in public is not a pretty site. You can try rushing outside when you suspect it. But it is hard to predict when it’s about to happen. It is also not a guarantee that you will make it outside on time.

Swiftly picking up the mess before anyone notices is also another option. However, you require cleaning supplies on hand for that to work. The only way to save yourself the embarrassment is to ensure it doesn’t happen. That means taking your dog to relieve itself before entering the store.

dog in shopping cart
Image Credit: skrotov, Shutterstock

Consider Leash Training and Obedience

Fleet Farm requires all handlers to keep their dogs under control. And they can ask you to leave the store if your furry friend is not well-behaved.

But keeping your dog on your side can be challenging with many new sights, sounds, and smells. Naturally, your pup will be tempted to explore. Putting your pup on a leash will ensure it doesn’t bother other shoppers or tamper with the merchandise.

Fleet Farm recommends a leash at least four feet long.

It can take a while before your pup gets used to a leash. Therefore, leash training your dog earlier is crucial. You can complement it with obedience training since a leashed dog could still cause trouble.

Don’t Bring Aggressive or Anxious Dogs

It can be a hard fact to admit, but not every dog belongs in a store. Some pups can’t handle it. Aggressive dogs are first on the list. They can get wild in a new environment, endangering other shoppers and pets.

If you have such a one, it is better to leave them at home. Otherwise, the good people at Fleet Farm may have to escort you out.

Also, dogs that get overly anxious should remain in the car. They can be easily overwhelmed by new sights, smells, and sounds.

Ensure Your Pup Is Vaccinated

You will undoubtedly encounter many people and pets in the store. Ensuring your pup is up-to-date on vaccinations is, therefore, crucial.

Properly vaccinating your furry friend will protect it from contracting infections. It will also keep other shoppers and pets safe. Additionally, getting your dog preventative treatment for fleas and ticks before going to public places is advisable.

You don’t want an infestation on your hands.

dog in shopping cart
Image Credit: Makruha_Konstantin, Shutterstock

Exercise Your Dog First

Keeping an energetic dog under control can be challenging. So, find a way to fend off some of the energy before visiting Fleet Farm.

A daily dose of exercise is essential for all dogs. You can go shopping right after your pup goes through its daily routine.

Alternatively, you can take your furry friend for a walk before shopping. It will bring its enthusiasm down a peg, making it less likely to jump on strangers or wander around.

Treats Can Help

Dogs can get out of control sometimes, making it challenging to keep them calm, even on a leash. That is more likely to happen in a busy environment such as Fleet Farm, where plenty of distractions exist.

Luckily, there is something that all dogs can’t resist: Treats.

You can easily redirect your dog’s attention by offering it treats. So, ensure you pack several before leaving the house.

Visit During Quieter Times

It is advisable to avoid visiting Fleet Farm during busier days. There is less space for you and your dog to move around and too many distractions. Try going to Fleet Farm when the traffic is lower instead. It will be safer for your dog and more convenient while shopping.

A less busy store can be an excellent place to start if your dog gets too overwhelmed, excited, or anxious. You can try other options once you build up your pup’s confidence.

Alternatively, you can choose to visit the larger Fleet Farm stores. Those are often less crowded than their counterparts.

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Final Thoughts

So, is Fleet Farm dog friendly? Yes. But only if you are shopping at a store in Wisconsin. The stores in other states don’t allow dogs unless it’s service animals.

Your shopping experience can be smooth if you plan accordingly. For instance, ensuring your dog is well-trained and fully vaccinated is essential.

Also, exercising before visiting the store could keep your dog’s energy low, making it less likely to get disruptive. Additionally, ensuring your dog relieves itself before entering the store can save you some embarrassment.

Remember, the rules will vary depending on the store and state. So, check with the store before bringing your dog for a shopping experience.

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Featured Image Credit: Augustcindy, Shutterstock

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