View Full Version : Map of Service Dog Potty Spots?

08-17-2009, 11:15 PM
A while back, someone said they were making a map of the park to include potty spots for service dogs. We're going in September, and this map would be very valuable! Does anyone have this?

I know I can ask a CM, but I'm a visual person - maps are much better for me than verbal directions.


08-19-2009, 07:48 AM
I think I left it more as a joke. In DL there is no "designated" spot to potty the dogs. There are just spots that are better than others. For example, Tommorrow Land has few bathroom spots but the dogs usually have to only go a few times a day. CMs actually know very little about where to potty the dogs (they usually know how to access the rides) but for obvious reasons they can't know everything. :)

It's more of an experience thing than anything else and it also depends on where the dog is used to pottying (some will only go on grass). Obviously it's all on-leash pottying too. My dogs are used to going in some very tight spots.

08-19-2009, 09:32 AM
I could have sworn there were specific locations - thanks for the correction. I was just trying to avoid offending anyone by picking the closest patch of grass! ;) My dog only goes on a leash (even at home) so that won't be a problem.

I'm trying to figure out which rides would be okay and which ones wouldn't. Obviously I'm not taking him on Space Mtn, but there are less obvious ones like Peter Pan. I guess we'll figure it all out when we get there!

08-19-2009, 01:10 PM
That is the guide for WDW for service dogs. I know you are going to DLR but that gives you an idea of what would not be good for a service dog.

Nemo subs have an observation room where you can see the ride without doing them very steep stairs.

Most dogs do fine with the 3-D shows like Bugs Life and HISTA

Pirates' Lair on Tom Sawyer Island is not very wheelchair accessible now that they closed the east end. You can take a chair in the tunnel but not a scooter though me and Piper took hers. Most of the ground is uneven and dirt. Dogs would not have a problem but people can have problems.

Peter Pan is an elevated ride and at one time they would not even let people on unless they could go down a ladder. I remember long ago that note on the brochures for Pan.

08-19-2009, 05:51 PM
The dog can ride any ride that an infant can ride. As for potty spots, grass areas are usable. The problem for most is figuring out the gates. I meant to take pics of the gates so you could figure out how to tell where they are. We will be there before you, so I will try to get pics for you. The gates make it easier so you don't have to lift the dog over the fence.

Best spots? The grass areas by Plaza Pavillion, in front of the NOS train station, back by the First Aid station, the planter by Innoventions, and other areas your dog is willing to use. Most areas of the hotels have a grassy area just around the entrances.

Be aware, that in HISTA, when they have the mice run, it can startle the dogs.

In the shows, they will ask you to sit in the seats next to the wheelchair seats, and to put the dog in the WC spot. This keeps them from blocking the row in case of evac.

Our dogs do Nemo easily. It is harder for me to get down the steps than the dog.

We do Pirate's Lair, and the dogs enjoy it. http://i135.photobucket.com/albums/q133/Malcon10t/DogPirates1.jpg

We do Peter Pan. Dogs lie on the floor.

ETA - Just looked at the link to WDW Animals, and doing Disneyland is vastly different. You cannot use backstage areas. And the ride list is very different. Escape2Disney, I can send you a pdf of the rides allowed. But rule of thumb is if a toddler can ride, the dog can ride.

08-19-2009, 05:57 PM
MDM(sorry Mal!)- your dog on Nemo is way to adorable!!

08-19-2009, 05:59 PM
Mal- your dog on Nemo is way to adorable!!Thank you, but to clarify, it is MDM's pup!!!

And DUmbo is a blast!


08-19-2009, 06:14 PM
Thank you, but to clarify, it is MDM's pup!!!

And DUmbo is a blast!


I love those ears!! How fun! They must have a blast as much as you do, even though they are work!

08-19-2009, 06:31 PM
Thanks for the pictures and what a lovely dog. Yeah, what dog would not love Tom Sawyer Island.

08-19-2009, 06:31 PM
Hmmm... my favorite spots:

1. In front of the Adventureland bathrooms (the ones across from the Tiki room). There is a plantar that has no gates and is just dirt and bushes. It's secluded so that you don't get gawked at and is close to a garbage can. If you stand in front of the women's bathroom and look towards the hub it's right in front of you.

2. On the side gardens of the castle. If you go to the end of the benches that line the front of the Alice bathrooms in front of the castle it is right there. It's not next to a picture spot and again, is an area where most won't gawk at you.

3. The smoking areas if they have no smokers in them (I can't stand the smell)! Most of them are uncrowded and it's not a desirable area. In example, the area in between the Matterhorn and Autotopia. It's grassy, and again no people unless the Nemo line is very long.

4. The Big Thunder Trail, most of it is dirt and shrubs, so you don't feel like your dog is stepping on every plant in DL.

If you are in a clinch (with a young pup obviously) any spot will do. Tomorrowland really has no potty place, the trail up to the train station can work but it can get crowded with strollers and people.


1. ToT bushes. If you stay closer to the left side (facing ToT), you'll find there's nobody there and it's quite. It's only a problem if your dog decides one of the lights is a good potty spot. :fez:

2. Bushes near the Zephyr and the dead Orange Stinger. Bushes near the line side of Mullohand Madness. The exit to the "Golden Dreams" used to be the best spot but now it's been covered by construction.

3. The Grizzly Rapids trail is also a good spot.

You know what's funny? Potty spots differ by crowd levels. The area in front of the castle is not good during parade time but is good other times. The grass between the toontown train station and the princess area is great once the princess thing closes down.

Maybe I will do a map. :geek: I can scan it in as a pdf and hand it out to people who need it and will treasure it as the gift it really is. :D Just kidding! If I do it, I'll send it your way.

BTW: Unless you have SUPER skinny legs, only go on Mr. Toad's by yourself with the dog. And the "test dog" freaked on Midway Mania (a CM warned me) but my dog slept through it, so I guess you just have to know your dog. On most Fantasyland rides I keep my leg between my dog and the exit for the simple reason that sometimes I worry that they might fall out. I'm a little overprotective. Those rides are SO jerky!

I could go on and on and on...

Have you been to DL with a dog before?

08-19-2009, 07:52 PM
Thanks so much Malcon and MDM!! Great information! I'll be printing up the information on the "spots" you've listed. My pup is still very young, but tends to do his business on somewhat of a schedule. I'm sure it'll be a little different with traveling though.

This will be my first time to DL with a service dog. As a matter of fact, this is the first time I've ever HAD a service dog! I'm extremely protective of him. I was worried about Peter Pan because it flies - I don't want him to fall out. Your idea of putting your legs next to the exit is a good one! I figure we'll start with something like Pinnochio and move our way up.

There is no way for me to lift him over a fence because I have a 5lb limit. I'm glad to hear there are other options! If/When you have the map, I'd LOVE a copy!

I was lucky enough to confirm with GCH that we will be staying directly over the lobby, so getting to a potty spot near the front of the hotel should be relatively easy. If I am taking a nap (which for health reasons I need to do often), it is close enough for my DD to take him out as well.

Since he is so young (almost a year when we go) and will have JUST finished his 2nd level training, I brought enough money to take him to the kennel if it becomes necessary. We'll also have his crate in the room for his breaks. I spoke with the hotel - they are okay with him being in the room without me as long as he isn't disruptive. Since he almost never barks, this will work fine.

I think this'll be an ideal first trip to DL for him. We'll be attending a conference, so he won't be in the park all day long. He's perfectly happy for up to 3 hours in the crate napping if he gets overwhelmed. My only real concern is how he'll deal with the fuzzy characters. He's never seen anything like it, so it is a wait-and-see....

08-19-2009, 07:52 PM
OMG - picture of puppy in the sub is PRICELESS!!!!!

08-19-2009, 08:58 PM
My only real concern is how he'll deal with the fuzzy characters. He's never seen anything like it, so it is a wait-and-see....Deal with it just like a child. Watch from a distance and see how he reacts. If you approach and he appears skittish, don't pet or attempt to reassure, just walk (or roll) away in full command. You are his pack leader, you are in control, and you will decide if it is safe for him. If you know it is safe, he will feel safe. Don't worry about "Will he be scared?" It travels down the leash. Our pups know MDM if mom says "Let's go", she means all is fine. They have complete confidence in her. If mom says its ok, its ok. If they are skittish, move on, and approach another one later, but only briefly. Approach and move on. Show the dog you meet and leave. Most actually are fascinated by the characters. In 7 dogs, only one was skittish briefly, she is fine now.

Oh, a quick note, not all characters like dogs. We have had a Minnie who was scared of the dog.

Discovering Pluto

08-19-2009, 09:14 PM
Thanks - I am still working on that one! You're right - it is like kids - the more confident I am, the more comfortable they are. He already reads me well, so I'll need to keep aware of my comfort level.

Your puppy pictures are ADORABLE! I love the ones with Pluto!

One funny note --- when my oldest DD graduated in June, my sister came to the house with a HUGE bunch of balloons. The pup went BALLISTIC! He stood in front of me and barked at them like he was protecting me from all of the evil in the world. It was almost comical! Needless to say, we spent the next few weeks going to kids birthday parties, Chuck-E-Cheese, etc. to break that fear!

He'll have a lot of firsts this trip - first plane ride, hotel, theme park, etc. My guess is he'll be absolutely exhausted at the end of the day!

08-19-2009, 09:59 PM
Don't forget they tire easier adn are used to sleeping longer. When MDM takes a pup, rarely are they in the park for more than 3-4 hours before she takes them back for a nap. As they get used to the park and get older, they stay longer and longer. Last trip, after going to Club 33 and manuevering the park for about 5 hours, Belle was exhausted and headed for her kennel as soon as MDM unleaded her.

08-19-2009, 10:05 PM
I absolutely agree! We're going to the conference in the AM (3-4 hours). Then he will go to his "bed" (crate) while we have lunch. I'll go back for a nap while DD explores the conference a bit. The group of us will go to the park for 3-4 hours, then eat (he loves to sleep under the table). Then we'll determine if he needs to go back to the room or if he can go to our night activities. Thankfully many of the PM activities will allow him to sleep next to me. For example, I'm taking pictures for the Homecoming Dance.

We'll be there 6 days. We did this so he could determine our pace.

His health and safety comes first. :)

08-20-2009, 12:49 PM
Not all dogs are comfortable with the rides. My dogs love to go on PoTC but we went with two fully trained service dogs and they were terrified but that may have been the handler or socialization, I never figured it out. I can see how Disneyland can be a terrifying place for any dog. I remember watching one dog in training walk the park with his tail tucked. I felt so bad for the guy.

I'd start off on smaller rides, like the Chew-Chew Train in DCA or Winnie the Pooh's Psychedelic Trip in DL and see how he reacts. Both have doors and are well lit. The areas they have to get into are very small. Other rides that are easy: Casey Jr. Train, the Carousel, the carriage rides down Main Street, Buzz Lightyear. These are great "test" rides.

Another tip: If you get on any rides like Storybook, Small World, PoTC, Jungle Cruise, watch your dog's transfer. Don't let the CM pressure you to get onboard. I had one of my dogs miss his foot on the JC and his leg went between the boat and dock. He was fine and didn't even blink at the incident but now I triple check the boat as they board and make sure the boat is steady before moving. The CMs just kind of say "Hop on board!" while the boat is rocking wildly.

Just like you said, if you're not stressed, he won't be stressed. It sounds like you've got a good plan for him, a nice low-key experience.

08-24-2009, 10:17 AM
About potty spots, the only ones I could find, and that made much sense to me, since so many are not easily found or the gates are not easily assessed and staff members do not know how to get them open. Was the one on the side of the castle, if you are looking at the castel from main street it is on the left. It was quiet and away from traffic even on busy days. A few others that I did find gate openings to were not out of the way and everyone was cat calling at the dog and he would not do his business.

So I tried to plan my day to potty every three hours or so, by going past the castle. Not an easy job but was not to bad.

But not mentioned maybe because you are not going there is California Adventure, we never did find anywhere there to potty the dog. But we would potty before going and then when leaving, but my dog can hold it a very long time if need be as long as he did his poop for the day. We stayed at DLH so it was not to bad of a walk back over to potty him after a few hours. Since you are staying at the GCH I would make sure you potty before you go in, and then plan on leaving back to the hotel for a potty break about 3 or 4 hours later, since I never could find anywhere to potty in DCA.

Oh and start practicing "oh look a human child" or "oh look a human", since at least every third person you pass is going to say "oh look a dog". We started to say this back to them and it got a laugh.

Don't forget a portable water bowl, and don't hook it on the dog, I made that mistake, at home I always hook the bowl to the dog never had a problem. Down there it must have falling off when we went on a ride or something and it was lost. My mistake.

Rides you have to guess yourself. The dog I took in March did great, went on everything and had no problem but it was a tight squeeze. He weighed 63 lbs, and was a yellow lab. My new dog, I think will have more problems, one he is much more excitable, two he weighs 90lbs and is a lot taller. We had such a tight squeeze in some of the dark rides, I just don't know how this new dog will be. We will find out soon, because I new we are going back in the next 4 months but just don't have dates yet.

Glad to here your dog is doing great.

Matterhorn Yodeler
09-02-2009, 12:37 PM
Best Potty Spots DL:

There is a grassy area in front of the castle to the left as you are facing it, along the pathway to Carnation Plaza. There is a little low fence with a gate into a secluded grassy area surrounded by bushes. Very few distractions (except for an occasional duck) and centrally located.

There is a grassy area to the side of the Haunted Mansion by the exit. Again, very secluded. It is very close by to the wheelchair ramp entry.

There is a dirt area on the side of the pin shop at the entrance to Frontierland. The shop is just to the right of the shooting gallery and the area is on the right side of the shop.

Tomorrowland side is tough. But there is a planted slope on the right as you go toward the Tomorrowland train station. Bigger dogs should have no problem jumping up. But it's not the best.

Just outside the gates by the picnic area are lots of low bushes which is a good relief spot.

Rides at DL:

The dogs are pretty much allowed on any ride that doesn't have a height restriction. I've successfully taken dogs on many of the rides including Pirates, Haunted Mansion, the Explorer Canoes, Submarines, all the Fantasyland dark rides, all the trains, the Caroussel, etc., etc.

It really does depend on the personality of the dog, but I've had no problems with the strange movements, sights and sounds of rides.

Much of the boarding of rides is through the handicap access.

They will let you do "puppy swap" with your dog on rides that won't accommodate the service animal. I've done that on Big Thunder Mountain RR and Soarin'. You wait in line together, then I watch the dog while my friend rides. When they return, they watch the dog while I ride.

Hope this is helpful!

09-02-2009, 05:20 PM
Thanks! All of the information has been very helpful! I'm glad DL is so accomodating.

I can't wait to get there!

09-13-2009, 08:52 AM
So, on the last trip, we did some major looking at potty spots, and there are so many more than I even guessed at.

First, here is a pic of the gates around grass areas. As you approach, look for the green square:

Reach on the backside of the gate, release the latch and it opens towards you:
These are taken at spots between the Matterhorn and the Monorail track.

Easy potty spots - At the hub area on the Frontier/Adventureland side.

Near the Princess Faire.
In DCA on the walk between Sunshine Plaza and Bugs Land

There are a LOT of easy potty spots. In NOS, just head to the train station area. Tomorrowland is probably the worst, just head to the Matterhorn.

And just have to show the Princesses!

09-13-2009, 10:15 AM
What a shock, Genevieve is totally eating up the attention.

I'm toooootally shocked.


09-13-2009, 12:49 PM
What a shock, Genevieve is totally eating up the attention.

I'm toooootally shocked.

AdrienneYou should have seen Goofy teaching her to "Play Dead".

Matterhorn Yodeler
09-14-2009, 04:57 PM
So, on the last trip, we did some major looking at potty spots, and there are so many more than I even guessed at.

Near the Princess Faire.

I relieved my pup near the Princess Faire, but could not find the opening. I ended up lifting him over. But he's a big boy, so there was no problem getting him in and out. Where's the opening?

09-14-2009, 05:21 PM
I relieved my pup near the Princess Faire, but could not find the opening. I ended up lifting him over. But he's a big boy, so there was no problem getting him in and out. Where's the opening?MDM says she thinks it is on the far side. She generally lifts the dogs over that fence so as not to have to walk back as far. Our current pup barely hits 50lbs so it is easy to just lift her for us. The bigger dogs jumped it.