Are Dogs Allowed In Supermarkets UK?

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Author: Jeanette Hampton

Supermarkets usually don’t allow dogs on their premises. However, with the increasing count of pet owners, retailers have begun to allow dogs into supermarkets and shops. So, are dogs allowed in supermarkets UK? The short answer is Rarely.

Only service dogs or guides helping persons with a disability were allowed to enter the store with a dog. At times, even service dogs were denied permission to enter the stores. But, nowadays, supermarkets allow dogs in with their customers to elevate consumer spending.

Are Dogs Allowed In Supermarkets?

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There is no specific law that prevents the entry of dogs from supermarkets. Store managers or owners may put some restrictions or impose certain rules at their discretion. A common policy the stores follow is to restrict the areas where they have food items. Restaurants also follow a similar policy and restrict the area where food is handled.

Thus, when you decide to go shopping with your dog in a supermarket, it becomes crucial to note down the store’s pet policy. In addition, your dog must be mentally prepared for their first stroll in the supermarket.

Dogs in Supermarkets: First Stroll

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Taking your dog into a supermarket for a stroll can get tricky. The first time stroll into such a place can get scary for you and your dog.

Reasons why the first stroll in a supermarket for a dog can get tricky:

  1. Too much activity on the premises
  2. Plenty of strangers roaming around the market is distracting for dogs
  3. Unfamiliar noises and new smells can confuse the dog
  4. Greetings from strangers can disturb the dog and create uncertainty in their minds

Further, walking down the supermarket store for a dog is similar to walking in a narrow tunnel. The view is obstructed because of the shelves and this often confuses them, if the shelves are mesh, it can help them partially see the people’s movement on the other side.

So, how do you prepare the dog for his first-time visit to the supermarket? Let’s find out.

Preparing The Dog For a First-time Visit To The Supermarket

You are probably wondering how can you prepare your dog for its first visit to the supermarkets. Here are some useful tips to leverage to avoid a scary experience.

Tip #1 – Start with a simple walk in the park

You can easily prepare your dog for a first-time visit to the supermarket. Take the dog for a normal stroll in a park or by the roadside. This helps in analyzing their behaviour around pedestrians. In fact, this also helps in observing the exact moment or identifying the trigger of when they start showing signs of stress.

Tip #2 – Visit the nearest small store

Once your dog gets used to the public environment it’s time for you to take the next step. Pick a small store nearby (dog-friendly) and take the dog for getting the feel of the store. This will surely help the dog as they get used to the surrounding smell, activities and people’s movements.

Tip #3Visit a pet store before going to the supermarket

Before you go to a supermarket store with the dog, make sure you take them to a pet store. Taking them to the pet store will help them relax as the environment is dog-friendly. Afterwards, it gets easy to take them to the supermarket.

When you finally decide on taking the dog to the supermarket try to visit in the early hours or before closing time. The dog will easily settle into the environment and will not feel any stress.

Shopping In The Supermarket With Dog

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The majority of retailers now frame dog-friendly policies. However, when you decide to go shopping with the dog, make sure you check the policies on the supermarket’s website or call them, as these stores frequently modify their pet policies.

Benefits Of Shopping With a Dog In The Supermarket

There are some interesting benefits of shopping with a dog in a supermarket.

  • The dog gets an opportunity to bond with the owner
  • Dogs can socialize easily and meet fellow dogs
  • The dog owner feels secure
  • A good-behaving dog may help the owner land a promotional gig, for instance, branding store pet policy


Can dogs go to supermarkets in the UK?

There is no precise law that prevents the entry of dogs into a supermarket. It solely depends on the store handler or manager to conjure up the policy and decide whether the store will allow the presence of dogs or not.

Why can’t dogs to supermarkets?

The presence of dogs or for that matter any pet breaches the health and safety guidelines. Also, dogs can cause disruption in the store, have allergies to other individuals, and make someone uncomfortable or knock things over. These are some of the prominent reasons that supermarkets highlight for not allowing dogs inside.

What shops are dog friendly in the UK?

John Lewis, Pret a Manager, Lush, Barbour, Apple, Liberty’s and H&M are some of the shops that are considered dog friendly in the UK.

Are Dogs Allowed in Supermarkets UK? – Final Comment

The idea of dog friendly supermarkets UK is now getting more common. Supermarket stores are changing their policies and allowing dogs into their premises with certain conditions. If you prepare the dog mentally and follow the store policy, there will be no issues and shopping in the supermarket with your dog may actually be delightful.

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Jeanette Hampton
Jeanette Hampton is a content writer at WWD and an expert on all things pets. She’s been writing pet blogs for over 5 years and knows everything there is to know about dogs. Jeanette enjoys writing about pet-related topics because she enjoys helping people learn more about their furry friends.

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