3 Tips for Taking Your Service Dog to the Movie Theater

    If you enjoy watching your movies on big screens, the only thing better than catching a blockbuster at your favorite movie theatre is doing it with your dog. Fortunately, hundreds of modern movie theaters are pet-friendly. They are happy to let your service dog in. 

    Service dogs are allowed into almost all public spaces, including movie theatres, churches, and hotels. 

    Emotional Support Animals vs. Psychiatric Service Dogs

    Emotional support animals are different from service animals. They are vital for people living with mental health issues. Although they act as service animals, they don’t get any form of training. The main role of emotional support animals is in their presence. They offer emotional support and make life easier for their owners. They may ease the symptoms of PTSD, depression, and anxiety. These animals may not be allowed in some public spaces. 

    Psychiatric service dogs are different. They are trained to help people with various mental health disorders like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and PTSD. The roles of service dogs include:

    • Offering deep pressure therapy which can soothe the pet owner
    • Detecting the signs of anxiety before an attack happens
    • Reminding their owners to take their medication
    • Offering companionship
    • Calming their owners down when they have anxiety attacks
    • Stopping strangers from approaching the owner when in distress
    • Helping the owner retrieve their phone in case of an anxiety attack
    • They ease the feeling of claustrophobia. 
    • Turning on the lights and conducting safety checks for people with PTSD

    If you are curious about psychiatric service dogs and whether you need them, find more information in this article. Learn about their federally protected rights, how to get them, and how to train them. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when taking your service dog to the movies. 

    Arrive Early and Position Yourself Well

    Most drive-in theatres will open over 90 minutes before the start of the movie. Arrive as early as possible to find a good spot, walk your service dog, and get something to eat. It also ensures that you don’t miss a ticket. 

    Ensure that your service dog isn’t disrupting anyone’s experience at the movie theatre. It shouldn’t be blocking their views. If you are going to a drive-through theatre, you may need to position your truck or SUV depending on its height. 


    You don’t want your service dog attracting the wrong attention when you are out. People can be judgmental of service dogs and it is even worse when they aren’t properly groomed.  You’ll have a better time at the movies when you are not worrying about the dog’s looks. Proper grooming is the secret to making a good first impression. You will receive a much warmer welcome at the movies when your dog looks good. 

    Ensure that It is Well-Mannered

    All service dogs must be housebroken. They shouldn’t demonstrate any aggressive tendencies. Your dog may be excluded from the movies if its manners still need some work. No one wants to have a dog pooping and urinating inappropriately at the movie theatre. It shouldn’t be making unnecessary noise. Service dogs should only bark, growl, or whine when they need to get your attention. Before heading out to the movie theatre, ensure that you can keep your dog in control. 

     The benefits of service dogs are endless. They can ease the lives of people with different disabilities. If you already have a service dog, you can take it to the movie theatre and other public areas. Ensure that your service dog is well trained. Since service dogs are allowed into places that regular dogs aren’t, they are expected to act much better.

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