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Austin, TX public transit: No pet dogs allowed

I was reading last night about the many fun things to do in Austin, including grazing at the fabulous (and dog-friendly) Sunset Valley farmer’s market, and it reminded me to call Austin’s Capital Metro this morning to find out about their pet policy. Cap Metro operates buses, streetcars, and now a brand-new rail line in the Austin area, but two separate customer service representatives told me that only service dogs are allowed on board. [Since I first wrote this post, Cap Metro has updated its site to include that rule.]

How unexpected, and how lame! I always think of Austin as the Seattle of Texas, so it really surprised and disappointed me to learn that Austin’s public transit system is not pet-friendly. Here’s one place where Austin needs to be weirder.

For other posts about traveling with dogs on public transit, take a look at Dog Jaunt’s handy guide!


  • toby

    Yeah… It’s really sad because I know it kept my girlfriend and I from rescuing a dog for a long time. Finally we buckled and just rescued one, but it is going to suck not being able to bus our pup anywhere.

  • Hi, Toby — I hear you. People are really using public transit these days, and you’d think that Austin, of all places, would be on the leading edge as far as pet policies go. Maybe you and your girlfriend can start a campaign!

  • Clarissa

    that is lame! I live at a new apartment complex (in Austin) that is built at a Metro Rail station. I was googling to see If I could hop on and take the metro rail downtown with my chihuahua because i’ll be staying at a friends downtown condo tonight. Dissapointing to read that I can’t bring her with me……. but, I may stuff her in my purse. LOL

  • Becca Rigby

    Yeah, I just got a puppy, and I really want to take her with me to more places, but I can’t because of the bus policy on pets. I am currently doing research and I am going to speak at a city council meeting and see if maybe we can change the policy! Perhaps it just hasn’t been brought up yet!

  • Absolutely, Becca, get in there and make yourself heard! I don’t know what the history of the topic has been in Austin, but evidence of keen, ongoing interest in making public transit workable for owners of at least smaller pets has got to help. Perhaps the info I’ve collected about the many, many other cities with kinder pet policies will help? Hope so!!

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