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Does the Old Navy Allow Dogs? 2023 Pet Policy

Nicole Cosgrove Profile Picture

By Nicole Cosgrove

Old Navy Mal

For close to 30 years, Old Navy has offered low-priced apparel to customers. More than 100 million people shop at this retail clothing store every year. And it wouldn’t be a stretch to assume that a good number of those people shopping have dogs as pets. Are they allowed to bring their dogs with them? Technically, yes. But they can only do so at the local store manager’s discretion.

Keep reading if you’d like a detailed breakdown of what their pet policy entails.

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Old Navy Pet Policy

Ever since Old Navy was established, it never got around to publishing an official, corporate pet policy. Not that they don’t believe in policies, because they do—these policies are vital in any organization, seeing as they not only ensure compliance with the law but also provide guidance for decision-making.

Needless to say, it’s difficult for customers to know what’s permitted and what’s not. All we’ve had to go on are the reviews and the shared experiences of people who’ve had the chance to shop at their stores with dogs.

Most of the reviews were positive, and that’s what we have to go on to know this popular retailer might be a dog-friendly brand.

woman shopping with her dog at the mall
Image Credit: manpeppe, Shutterstock

Are All Old Navy Store Locations Dog-Friendly?

There’s no way of knowing for sure, so it’s best to call the local store manager beforehand, instead of just showing up with a dog. They are the only people in the organization that can allow dogs in the store, or deny you entry.

If the manager tells you no, don’t take it personally. They are probably trying to protect shoppers who have a fear of dogs. Medical experts call this type of phobia cynophobia.1

Are Service Dogs Allowed in Old Navy Stores?

Not having an official pet policy doesn’t mean that you’ll find zero information concerning pets in all their policies. We went through the store’s guidelines and noticed that there’s a section that touches on people with disabilities.

There’s a clause that allows all people who are “differently abled” to shop with their service or assistance dogs. Whether they are guide dogs, autism support dogs, mobility assistance dogs, hearing dogs, allergy detection dogs, diabetic alert dogs, seizure response dogs, or psychiatric service dogs. Sadly though, they don’t view emotional support or therapy dogs as service animals.

Old Navy has always made sure that all their staff members are effectively trained on how to make shopping a fun experience for every disabled shopper who shows up with a service animal. They are not legally obligated to do so, but they do because they understand the type of challenges that disability presents daily.

The manager cannot say no to a guide or service dog because the Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits them from doing so. This federal law has made it clear that nobody can be denied access to any public premise just because they own and/or rely on a service animal.

blind man with service dog near escalator
Image Credit: Africa Studio, Shutterstock

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The 4 Tips to Prepare Yourself for Shopping at Old Navy with a Dog

We have a few tips to share that can be useful to anyone looking to shop at Old Navy with a pet.

1. Call Before Showing Up

You’ll be saving yourself a whole lot of disappointment if you just call your local store manager before showing up.

Before hanging up the call, make it crystal clear that your dog is not a service animal. Otherwise, they may assume it is, go ahead and give you the green light, only to stop you at the entrance when they realize you don’t need any form of assistance.

2. Abide By the Rules and Respect Other Shoppers

Make sure that you’re well-acquainted with all the rules that pertain to shopping with pets. If the rules say all dogs have to be leashed, leash your dog—even if it’s a service dog, as it gives the impression that you’re in charge and ready to take responsibility should anything happen. The leash will also make other shoppers feel safe.

Be respectful to everybody and follow the protocol. We’ve heard of instances where shoppers are allowed to shop with their leashed dogs, only for them to remove the leash once they get inside. That kind of behavior can’t be tolerated, and the manager will be within his/her rights to ask you to leave.

a service dog on a leash
Image Credit: Belish, Shuttesrtock

3. Carry Wipes and Poop Bags

You must be ready to clean up any mess your dog makes quickly and efficiently, to ensure all customers still find the store environment pleasant. Carry pet wipes and poop bags to make sure you’re ready should your dog decide to relieve itself in the store.

4. Bring Some Treats

Most dogs respond well to positive reinforcement. Therefore, you should carry a few treats with you to reward any sort of good behavior. This will make it easier for you to make them follow simple instructions and stay calm while you do your shopping.

service dog training
Image Credit: SasaStock, Shutterstock

What Behavior Would Compel an Old Navy Manager to Ask a Dog Parent To Leave?

There are so many reasons why this would happen. If the dog keeps on barking at other shoppers, you’ll be asked to leave. They’ll also ask you to leave if you fail to clean up after your dog, or if you sneaked in without asking for permission. So please don’t take advantage of their pet-friendly nature if you wish to enjoy your shopping experience.

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Old Navy doesn’t have an official, corporate pet policy. The policies vary, depending on the store location.

Secondly, service animals can gain entry into any store, without requesting consent from the manager. The American Disabilities Act, which is a federal law, gives them the right. And lastly, managers can ask any shopper to leave, if their dog is exhibiting disruptive behavior, or if they aren’t following the rules.

If you’ve ever shopped at Old Navy with a dog, kindly reach out and share your experience!

See also: 

Featured Image Credit: Old Navy Mall (Image Credit: WikiBoy06, Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 4.0)

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