Are dogs allowed in Buc-ees? Buc-ees is a store chain that sells travelers fuel, food, and various items. The stores sell prepared food that is ready to consume, so dogs are not allowed inside the store. However, there is one exception. Service dogs needed to help owners perform basic tasks may enter. The animals must be under the owners’ control at all times or the store manager can ask you to remove them.
Which Dogs Are Service Dogs?
Emotional support or comfort animals do not qualify as service animals. According to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), service animals are:
- Trained to perform specific tasks for their owners, like alerting them to a medical emergency.
- Are not required to wear vests or other forms of identification.
- Must accompany the individual with the disability.
- Can be any breed or size.
Can states make regulations about which animals are service animals?
States have the authority to decide if animals are allowed in public locations; however, when it comes to service animals, states must follow federally mandated guidelines.
- State and local governments can permit animals other than service dogs in stores and restaurants.
- States can offer registration programs for service dogs.
- States can require service dogs to be licensed and have up-to-date vaccinations. However, this requirement can only be enforced if all dogs are required to be licensed and have current vaccinations.
Are the laws prohibiting dogs in Buc-ees the same in all states?
No, each state has laws and regulations about allowing dogs in Buc-ees and similar establishments. 23 states have laws and regulations that permit dogs to be brought onto a patio or outdoor dining section where food is served.
The Buc-ees chain of stores began in Texas in 1982. In 2019, stores were established in six other states.
|State||Law or Regulation|
Are Buc-ees Pet-Friendly?
Buc-ees are pet-friendly stores in that they carry pet supplies, including food, animal collars, toys, and hygiene products. While only service dogs are allowed in Buc-ees stores, the chain is known for having large dog relief areas and some provide pet stations with bags.
What Are Other Facts About Buc-ees?
Do Buc-ees have indoor dining?
Buc-ees stores serve made-to-order food and already-prepared food. However, they serve the food to go. There are no tables for indoor dining in the Buc-ees stores. Store officials report that the stores are designed for convenience for travelers, and most travelers prefer to grab a quick bite that they can eat outside the store or in their vehicle while traveling.
What is one strict rule that applies to all Buc-ees locations?
Buc-ees are fuel and supply stores close to major highways, but no 18-wheelers can stop there. The stores have signs informing commercial truck drivers that 18-wheelers are prohibited from stopping or parking in their parking lots. Drivers of commercial vehicles who want to get food or supplies from a Buc-ees location must park outside the store parking area and walk into the store.
Where is the biggest Buc-ees located?
The biggest Buc-ees store is in the Great Smoky Mountains in Sevierville, Tennessee. This store has 74,000 square feet of indoor shopping, 120 fuel pumps, a 250-foot-long car wash, and employs 350 people. The Sevierville store is at 170 Buc-ee’s Blvd, Kodak, TN 37764. This location opened in June of 2023 with easy access to people traveling on I-40. Along with fuel, food, and general shopping merchandise, the store has charging stations for individuals driving electric cars.
Where are the most Buc-ees located?
Texas has more Buc-ees stores than any other state. Buc-ees began in Texas in 1982. 2019, the chain branched out and established locations in other southern states. At this time, there are:
- 34 locations in Texas
- 4 locations in Alabama
- 2 locations in Florida
- 2 locations in Georgia
- 2 locations in Tennesse
- 1 location in Kentucky
- 1 location in South Carolina
What Are the 2 Rules to Remember About Pets and Restaurants?
- Service dogs are allowed in restaurants and all public locations because of the ADA.
- States have the right to allow dogs on patios and in outside eating areas.
The photo featured at the top of this post is © 24K-Production/iStock via Getty Images
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