Are Dogs Allowed in Aldi?

Is Aldi Dog Friendly? Are Dogs Allowed In Aldi?

Aldi’s is dog-friendly insomuch as they offer a wide variety of foods, treats and items for sale for dogs and other pets. However, dogs–with the notable exception of service dogs–are not permitted in their grocery stores.

Are Dogs Allowed in Aldi?
Are Dogs Allowed in Aldi?

Official Dog Policy for Aldi

We could not find a published policy on the Aldi website. However, an email request to customer service regarding their dog policy garnered the following response:

We do not allow pets that are not service animals, as defined by the ADA, to accompany customers in our stores.

Aldi’s Customer Service

No further explanation was provided.

So Aldi allows dogs that are service animals in their grocery stores?

Aldi does. The same email inquiry about pet dogs came with the following statement:

Please know, we are committed to accommodating customer’s use of service animals in our stores in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and other applicable laws. We welcome all customers, as well as their service animals, into our stores.

Service animals are allowed to accompany their handlers through food service areas but must be under the control of their handler at all times. Generally, service animals such as dogs must stay on the floor, or they must be carried by their handler.

Special identification of service animals, including vest, is not required under the ADA and identification is used at the handler’s discretion.

Positive Reviews From Customers Who Were Happy With Aldi’s Dog Policy

We couldn’t find anyone who expressed happiness with the policy. It’s been our experience that most people–including dog owners–understand and accept that pets cannot be brought into grocery stores.

Customers Who Were Unhappy With Aldi’s Dog Policy

Why are dogs allowed in Aldi or any grocery store for that matter? Only a few years ago, that seemed to be the question raised in many online complaints. It suggests that Aldi may have been more permissive at one time.

An online discussion from 2019 included a comment from “ThePuppyPrincess” who wrote:

“I love dogs, but they definitely don’t belong in the grocery store unless they are service dogs. If this seems to be a pattern, I would be calling management or corporate. I’m usually not “that person” but this could really be a health hazard.”

Not surprisingly, many comments about whether dogs should be allowed in Aldi or other grocery stores center on health and food safety. And it’s not just a concern in the United States. German-owned Aldi is located in 20 countries. A June, 2019 article in the Lancashire Post in the United Kingdom also addressed an unhappy incident.

In the article, an Aldi shopper expressed outrage that he was asked to leave the Milnsbridge, Huddersfield store after he placed his puppy in one of their shopping carts–or trolleys as they are called in the UK.

As the shopper explained, he did not want to leave his dog outside for fear it might be kidnapped.

The shopper’s complaint garnered a range of opinions on his predicament.

One commenter complained, “I’ve used those trollies to put food in. Now my food’s been on your dog’s backside. Why not think of others before selfishly breaching health and safety and food hygiene rules?”

However, another wrote that service dogs are allowed in the store and “they bring in as much dirt or germs, or whatever people are stressing about, into the shop as any other dog would or that’s on your own shoes.”

Another added that parents often allow their children to stand in the trollies “with their mucky shoes on.”

Does Aldi’s Dog Policy Vary By Location?

It does not. Except for service dogs, Aldi’s does not allow dogs in any of its grocery stores.

Does that mean the rule is always enforced? Possibly not. As one online poster wrote in 2019 about pet dogs brought in under cover:

Most of the time the dogs are so small and the few floor workers that are there don’t tend to see them. And if they do (as long as the dog is well behaved), they do not care. One actually came in today! I pet him with the owner’s permission and he was a very good boy.

Tips For When Going to Aldi’s With A Dog

As it has been made clear, pet dogs are not allowed in Aldi’s, so don’t bring yours. If, however, you have a bonafide service dog, there are still certain rules of common sense and courtesy that should be followed.

If your service dog is not fully trained, hold off bringing him in any store until he is. If your dog is too rambunctious or unpredictable around strangers, subjecting other store patrons to him would be unfair.

Keep your service dog close beside you and under your control at all times.

Be sure to give fellow shoppers a wide berth. Move out of their way rather than expecting them to when passing nearby.

Be sure your service dog has been well fed and watered and given the opportunity to relieve himself before going inside any store.

Always bring poop bags and cleanup supplies just in case of a mishap. Don’t expect store personnel to do the dirty work.

Lastly, if walking or driving to Aldi with your dog to go grocery shopping, determine ahead of time whether it is safe (or even allowable) to tie your dog up somewhere outside or to leave him in your vehicle. If it is not, keep him at home.

Final Thoughts

As much as we dog-lovers hate having to part with our four-legged companions, there are going to be places where our pets are simply not allowed. Aldi grocery stores is one of them.

Grocery shopping is one of those chores that nearly everyone has to do. Hard as it may be to believe, there are people who are not comfortable around dogs and who, from a health standpoint, don’t want dogs in areas where food is being sold.

When it’s time to shop, if you really don’t want to part with your pet, keep in mind that Aldi provides home delivery service.

Are Dogs Allowed in Aldi?