There are few family destinations in the USA that are as peerless as Disney World. And if you’re planning on spending this vacation there, it makes sense to have Fido come along. But, are dogs allowed in Disney World?
The answer to this question isn’t exactly straightforward. The short answer is – yes, dogs are! But, this access isn’t without massive restrictions.
So, dogs are permitted into certain floors, buildings, and blocks of rooms at 4 resorts in Disney World.
Aside from these areas, most locations at Disney World are out of bounds for dogs! Because of the many complexities surrounding bringing a dog to Disney World, you might want to know what all your options are. That way, you can still end up having a fantastic trip with Fido.
What’s Disney World’s Pet Policy?
Before October 15, 2017, Disney World had maintained a long-standing not-so-friendly pet policy.
Hitherto, dogs were not permitted in the water parks, theme parks, and most resort hotels. To be honest not much has changed anyway. And companion dogs still aren’t permitted in the water and theme parks.
The only difference is that, now, you can bring your dog to any one of the 4 resorts at Disney World that have now attained dog-friendly status. Keep in mind that there are a total of 26 resorts at Disney World.
As part of its revamped pet policy, Disney World makes accessible to dogs certain sections of these 4 resorts.
It may not seem like much. But, we think it’s still worth appreciating. More importantly, it echoes the desire of Disney World to keep its premises safe for both pets and patronizers of the facility.
Aside from the resort options, you may also take advantage of Disney’s on-site boarding facility. We will address both options in detail.
The New Disney Dog-Friendly Resort Hotel Pilot Program
Disney World’s tweak of its pet policy has seen the implementation of a new pilot program that’ll please dog owners especially.
For the first time, you can bring your dog into any of Disney’s 4 dog-friendly resort hotels!
However, this new policy is limited just to dogs! Cats, rabbits, and any other companion animal aren’t included in the policy.
Disney World’s dog-friendly resorts include;
Port Orleans Riverside Resort
Riverside is split into two different styles – the mansions (Magnolia Bend) and the bayou (Alligator Bayou). This segregation allows for an incredibly picturesque thematic setting.
The pathways are quiet and should provide for peaceful strolls with Fido.
Art Of Animation Resort
Immerse yourself in the artistry, enchantment, and magic of Disney at the Art of Animation Resort.
The bedrooms of this resort have all been created using themes from four favorite Disney movies. They include The Lion King, Finding Nemo, Cars, and The Little Mermaid. You’re going to feel like you’re right in the movies.
What’s more, this resort is home to the largest pool in all of Disney World’s resorts.
Yacht Club Resort
This resort is heavily nautical-themed. You can find this resort in the Boardwalk area, closely located to Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
The resort also sports the ever-magnificent Stormalong Bay, where you can cool off for the day while you catch some rays.
Cabins At Fort Wilderness
The rustic nature of this resort means Fido is going to love it to a fault. The resort is fixed on about 750 acres of cypress forest and pine.
The area brims with wildlife. It isn’t unusual to come across some deers, ducks, or rabbits. While this resort is littered with exciting pool areas, we think you’re especially going to enjoy the scenic woodland trails a lot with Fido.
These Resorts Come With Extra Charges If You Take Fido
At Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, Port Orleans Riverside Resort, and the Cabins at Fort Wilderness Resort, you will pay an extra $50 for every night you spend with Fido.
At the Yacht Club Resort, an extra $75 will be charged to your room account for every night with Fido.
Are Dogs Allowed In Disney World? Why You Should Take Advantage Of Disney’s Dog-Friendly Resort Hotels
There aren’t a lot of places you can survey in Disney World with Fido. All water parks and theme parks are out of bounds for dogs.
It means that if you don’t opt for a dog-friendly resort at Disney World, you might as well leave your furry pal home. And we know it’s something you can’t afford to do.
At the 4 Disney resorts where your dog can stay with you, you’ll be afforded the luxury to enjoy some quality time with Fido in select areas. These may include outdoor walkways and green spaces with pet relief areas.
What’s more, your pup will get Pluto’s Welcome Kit.
This kit includes a mat, pet ID tag, food/water bowls as well as maps to dog-friendly walking zones! You also get a Pluto Do Not Disturb door hanger. You put it up on your door. That way, it lets hotel staff know there’s a dog in the room. And with the hanger up while you’re away, they won’t enter the room.
But…There Are Rules to Follow
The 4 Disney hotel resorts listed above are no doubt dog-friendly. Still, there are many restrictions in place for Fido when you bring him.
Some of the rules are that;
- You must provide up-to-date vaccination records of your dog
- You cannot allow your dog on any furniture within the premises
- Keep your dog on a leash at all times
- You cannot leave your dog in your room for more than 7 hours without attending to it
- Not more than two dogs can be allowed in any one room
- Food and beverage locations; pool and fitness areas are out of bounds for Fido
- Ponds, lakes, and fountains are out of bounds for dogs
Are Service Dogs Allowed In Disney World?
Service animals are those animals that provide some form of assistance to persons with disabilities.
Per the rules of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), all resort hotels, theme parks, water parks, and all attractions are open to service animals.
If your dog is a service animal, he can go with you to food and beverage areas, stay with you in any of the resort hotels (not just the 4) and accompany you to any place you want to go.
He may even be able to come with you for rides provided they aren’t too dangerous for him.
Suffice it to say, service animals are welcome to ALL places at Disney World. There are no restrictions whatsoever for such animals there!
What Onsite Transportation Options Are Dog-Friendly?
At Disney World, there aren’t any shuttles specifically designated for dogs.
Still, there are transportation services that’ll allow dogs onboard. Thus, you’ll be able to get around Disney World with Fido using the Minnie Van service. Unfortunately, though, Disney has for some time, suspended its Minnie Van service since 2017. Rumors, however, are that they plan on bringing it back soon!
At the Port Orleans Resort and Cabins at Fort Wilderness Resort, you may use their internal buses to get around with Fido
What Fun Activities Can You Do With Fido At Disney World?
The truth is that there’s very little fun you have with your furry pal at Disney World.
At most, you have two options when you bring Fido along.
You either let him in your hotel room the whole day. Or you get him to the on-site doggy day camp where he can board for the entire day while you survey Disney World.
Chillin’ In Your Room
If your dog is super laid-back, you can leave him in your room while you head out for the day.
You know your dog’s temperament better than anyone does. And if you think he’s not going to get nervous/jittery when you’re out for extended periods, then leaving him behind might be a good option.
Make sure to affix your Pluto door hanger before leaving. That way, staff members get to know that there’s a dog present in your room and won’t enter. Especially while you’re away.
If Fido panics in your absence and goes haywire, you’ll receive a call from staff to arrive within 30 minutes to keep your dog relaxed.
More importantly, Disney World advises not to leave your dog unattended for more than 7 hours at any given time.
Doggy Day Care
Can’t afford to leave doggo behind in your room? Then, you should definitely take advantage of Disney’s top-notch pet boarding facility.
Best Friends Pet Care promises to give Fido the best treatment possible while you’re away drinking in the goodness of Disney World.
The facility provides a supervised setting that’ll provide everything from playtime to large, crate-free suites that come with a lot of pampering.
You can choose to allow your pup to stay for a couple of hours, two days, or a full week depending on your schedule.
So, are dogs allowed in Disney World? Yes, they are! But, their access to the place comes with a lot of restrictions.
More importantly, there will be many other challenges you’re likely to face if you bring a dog. You won’t be able to visit theme parks with your furry pal. Plus, you’re going to have to spend more money than if you left him home with a pet-sitter or at a kennel.
So, it does come with its challenges. But, will it be worth it in the end? We think it would! You might have to carefully plan your trip out to make the most out of it if you’re coming with your dog.
But, the fun and excitement cannot be any bigger than bringing your dog along with you to experience the joys of Disney World.