Is CVS Pet-Friendly? CVS Pet Policy Explained (Updated for 2022)

Cartoon dog and a green checkmark displayed against a backdrop of a CVS store aisle. This image is meant to show that dogs are allowed in CVS.

CVS is a pharmacy with hundreds of locations throughout the United States. For everything from food to medicine, CVS is a go-to destination for a variety of goods and services. Aside from prescription drugs and over-the-counter medications, they also sell a wide selection of cosmetics and other beauty products.

For these reasons and many others, dog owners find themselves frequenting CVS on a near-daily basis. If you’re one of those dog owners, you might want to know: “Does CVS allow dogs?”

Luckily, we’re here to answer that question. We are experts on retail pet policy and we’ve done the necessary research to be able to answer the question: is CVS Dog-Friendly?

Let’s cut to the chase. CVS doesn’t have an official pet policy. CVS is a dog-friendly store and allows well-behaved animals of all kind in its CVS locations. You should feel free to bring your leashed, well-behaved pet dogs to your local CVS store!

CVS is one of the most well-known retail stores in the United States and is popular with many consumers for many reasons, and one of them may be because they are pet-friendly.

With so many different types of products available at CVS, along with a staff that has proven to be friendly toward pets, it’s no wonder that many people bring their pets into the store with them when they go shopping. 

The store does not have a specific policy regarding pets, but they do have a few guidelines that shoppers should pay attention to before they bring their pets inside the store. Pets are allowed at CVS so long as they are leashed and under control.

Continue reading as we dive in and learn all the information you need about bringing your pet to CVS and their pet policy. We’ll answer the questions: “Is CVS Pet-Friendly?”, “Can Service Animals Go Into CVS?”, and “Are Emotional Support Animals Allowed?”

What Do CVS Employees Say?

Before we dive into the results of our investigation into the CVS pet policy, we want to go over some of the first-hand testimonials from CVS employees with experience at the store locations. Here’s what they said:

“Personally I’m fine with animals in my store because they’re almost always well behaved around here, and they’re really cute besides. Plus it helps lighten the mood among customers when there’s a big line at pharmacy and they get to pet a happy little fuzzy fella.”

-Anonymous CVS Store Manager

“At my CVS we just let people bring there dogs in we didn’t care and they were also on good behavior. We never said anything.

-Anonymous CVS Employee

There you have it! Hopefully, that has given you some insight as to whether animals are welcome at CVS stores, straight from the mouth of the employees.

What Animals Are Allowed in CVS?

Now that we know that CVS store locations allow dogs inside, let’s take a look at which animals are allowed in CVS. Many retail stores have a dogs allowed policy to some degree. For example, there are many retail stores that allow service animals and service dogs, but are not pet-friendly. This is a fairly common and consistent pet policy of CVS pharmacy.

We will dive into what types of animals are allowed in CVS and what you can expect when you try to bring your dog into your local CVS.

Does CVS Allow Pet Dogs?

Man standing in front of a CVS store with a leashed dog.

The first topic to cover is whether CVS allows pet dogs. It’s not common for retail stores to allow a pet owner to bring their dog inside the store. Usually, only service dogs are permitted. CVS is clearly an exception to this norm. While not all CVS locations have a company wide pet policy, the chain is generally pet friendly.

In fact, not only do CVS pharmacy locations allow non-service dogs, but you might also find that your local store has dog treats handy at each register for pet owners to give their furry friend. Most CVS stores are perfectly friendly to CVS customers that bring their well-behaved furry friends to the store for some shopping.

Are Service Dogs Allowed?

Graphic representation of a blue service dog.

Pursuant to ADA guidelines, CVS stores will allow shoppers to bring their service dog into the store. This is not so much a policy that CVS has and actually are a legal requirement. Though CVS has a particular reputation for allowing service animals and other dogs in their stores, the ADA mandates that all retail stores, regardless of local regulations or the opinion of the store manager, accept service dogs to help disabled customers with their shopping needs.

If you have a service dog that falls under the Americans with Disabilities Act, you are welcome to bring their service pet to their local CVS location and other grocery stores. When it comes to other pets, many CVS customers report success in bringing them into the store. Store managers are generally allowed to ask for information to verify the status of your service animal, but the answer to the question: “are service dogs allowed in CVS?” is a resounding yes!

Are Emotional Support Dogs Allowed?

Graphical representation of a person hugging their dog, presumably an emotional support dog.

The final category of animal that we want to cover is that of the emotional support animal. Emotional support animals are often somewhat of a “gray area” when it comes to their ability to enter retail stores.

While many people see emotional support animals as essential company on a trip to the store, the ADA simply doesn’t see it that way. Emotional support animals are not considered to be a service animal under ADA guidelines, and thus, they are not afforded the same protections as certified service dogs.

Things to Keep in Mind

Now that you know you can bring your pet into CVS with you, what can you expect during your visit? We’ll provide you with some helpful tips to help you get the most out of your time at CVS with your pet dog.

Policies May Change Depending on Store Location

Graphical representation showing multiple locations on a map. Showing that CVS has many locations.

First, it’s important to keep in mind that not all CVS stores are the same. Some may be more pet-friendly than others, so it’s a good idea to call ahead and ask about the store’s policies.

Leash Your Pet When Inside CVS Stores

It may be necessary for you to keep your pet on a leash if you are asked to do so. In order to ensure the safety of both your pet and other customers in the store, it is necessary to follow this procedure.

Make Sure Your Dog is on Best Behavior

You may also be asked to keep your pet off of the counters and away from displays. This is to prevent your pet from knocking over products or getting into something they shouldn’t.

Your Dog May Receive Attention from Staff & Other Guests

Also, you can expect to have a little extra fun when shopping with your pet! Many CVS stores have staff members who love animals, and they may be more than happy to pet your dog or cat while you shop.

Are All Pets Allowed at CVS? 

CVS is a pet-friendly store, but that doesn’t mean that all pets are allowed inside. In general, CVS stores allow dogs and cats. Because they don’t have an official pet policy, CVS is flexible. However, this also means that they will use common sense when allowing or disallowing pets.

For example, some CVS stores may not allow reptiles or other animals that require special care. 

CVS has the right to deny admission if it determines that a pet could endanger customers’ safety. This is carried out to safeguard both other animals and people, including other customers and staff.

It’s always a good idea to call ahead and ask about the store’s policies before bringing your pet inside. In this case, preparation is the best strategy.

What Are the Best Times to Shop With Your Pet?

This will vary from store to store, but in general, the best time to shop with your pet is during off-peak hours. There are certain times of the day that are busier than others, so it is recommended that you avoid these times as much as possible. 

Obviously, this is not an option that is available to everyone. If you do have to shop during peak hours, be prepared for crowds and noise. This can be stressful for both you and your pet, so it’s important to take breaks as needed.

How to Shop With Your Pet at CVS

Shopping with your pet at CVS is a great way to get out of the house and explore your neighborhood.  You can make the most of your trip if you follow these simple tips:

  1. Make sure you plan ahead and know the policies of the store before you go there. The more prepared you are, the less likely you will be to have any surprises during your visit.

  2. During your visit, be mindful of your pet and other customers.  Do not allow your pet to roam freely around displays and keep him on a leash at all times. It is not only for your pet’s safety but for the safety of everyone inside of the store, including other customers and employees, as well.

  3. If you’re shopping during peak hours, be prepared for crowds and noise. This can be stressful for both you and your pet, so take breaks as needed.

  4. Have fun! Shopping with your pet can be a great way to bond and explore your neighborhood.

General Tips For Bringing Your Pets Out In Public

Whether you’re shopping at CVS or another pet-friendly store, there are a few general tips you should keep in mind when bringing your pet out in public.

Policy Education

First, be aware of the store’s policies. Some stores may be more pet-friendly than others, so it’s a good idea to call ahead and ask about the store’s policies.

Leave a Good Impression

Additionally, be mindful of your pet during your visit. Ensure that your pet stays on a leash and away from other danger areas that may be potentially hazardous to them. This includes any items that may be fragile or breakable. This is for the safety of both your pet and other customers in the store.

Avoid Busy Times

Finally, avoid shopping during the busiest times of the day, if possible. If it can’t be avoided and you’re shopping during peak hours, be prepared for crowds and noise. This can be stressful for both you and your pet, so it’s important to take breaks as needed.

Let’s Recap

Man with dog in front of CVS.

CVS is generally a pet-friendly store and they welcome most kinds of pets inside their establishment provided that they are well-behaved and on a leash. By keeping these things in mind, you’re assured that your trip to CVS goes smoothly for both you and your pet.

Different CVS locations have different sets of rules and pet policies that you should be aware of before you bring your pet in. You and your pet will both enjoy your CVS experience if you follow these guidelines.

CVS Pet Policy FAQ

Yes, dogs are generally allowed in CVS. CVS does not have an official pet policy. Results may vary from store to store. 

Yes, you can bring a smaller, well-behaved dog in a backpack to CVS. CVS is a dog-friendly store. 

CVS allows small and large dogs alike. They are a pet-friendly retail store. 

Pet Friendly Report Card for CVS

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Editorial Staff
Author: Editorial Staff

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