Walt Disney built Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort to welcome, inspire, and delight Guests of all ages. To Walt, Disneyland Park was the perfect place for kids and their parents to have fun together. But when Mr. Disney said he wished to welcome all Guests, he was referring only to humans.
Many consider pets part of the family, but they are not permitted at Disney Parks. Other than service dogs and other task-performing animals like miniature ponies, Mickey Mouse and his friends are the only animals allowed inside! Still, the rising popularity of emotional support animals (ESAs) often causes controversy about where to draw the line on furry friends at Cinderella Castle.
This week, a frustrated veteran spoke out after they were denied entry at Disney Springs with their emotional support dog. “This is unacceptable,” u/CardiologistNo1304 wrote. “Just because I don’t have a visible disability doesn’t mean I don’t have one.”
In the comments, the Disney Resort Guest argued that their dog helps calm them down due to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), leading them through crowds during episodes. “He also has a service animal id they completely denied it even though he’s been allowed at Disney parks,” they claimed.
However, the dog is not a trained service animal and, therefore, not protected by the ADA. Online service animal certifications are widely regarded as scams and do not offer legal protection for pets in public places.
Though Disney Parks fans shared this with the veteran and suggested they see a doctor to find a trained PTSD service dog, the Guest insisted they and their best friend were discriminated against. “I’m a veteran I served in the army and this is how we get treated,” they wrote.
Only task-performing service dogs are permitted entry to Walt Disney World Resort – including Disney’s Animal Kingdom, EPCOT, Magic Kingdom, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney Springs. Contact Guest Services for resources on bringing a service animal to the Central Florida Disney Park, or board your pet at Best Friends Pet Care, the Disney World hotel for dogs!
Please note that the story outlined in this article is based on a personal Disney Parks Guest experience. No two Guest experiences are alike, and this article does not necessarily align with Inside the Magic’s personal views on Disney Park operations.