Traveling with Service Animals

Service animals are animals that are trained to perform a specific task for the benefit of a person with a disability, and are permitted in all areas where passengers are allowed. Amtrak personnel may ask what task(s) the service animal performs. Carry-on pet guidelines are for animals for which no claim of service is made, and do not pertain to passengers traveling with service animals.

Pets and Animals Not Considered Service Animals

The following types of animals are considered pets (not service animals) and are welcome on Amtrak if they fit into our carry-on pet guidelines:

  • Comfort Animals: Animals not trained to perform a specific task, but which are said to provide emotional support or to relieve anxiety simply by their presence (for example, by the passenger holding or stroking the animal).
  • Search and Rescue Dogs:* Animals that are trained generally, but not to assist a particular passenger.
  • Police Dogs:* Other than dogs brought on trains by the Amtrak Police Department.

* If the passenger or agency feels an exception needs to be made for search and rescue dogs or police dogs, contact the Amtrak Police Department for assistance.

Control of Your Service Animal

You must keep your service animal under control at all times. The animal should always be on a leash, harness or other tether, unless this is not possible due to a disability or if the leash or other tether would interfere with the service animal's safe, effective performance of work or tasks, in which case the service animal must be otherwise under the handler's control.

Amtrak personnel may require you to remove your service animal en route or from the station premises if:

  • The animal is out of control and you do not take effective action to control it (for example, a dog causes a significant disturbance by barking repeatedly and uncontrollably or is not housebroken) or
  • The animal poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others.

If you are asked to remove your service animal, but you would like to remain on the premises and/or continue travel without the animal, you must make arrangements for another person or local animal control to accept custody of your animal, and you may be required to continue or begin your Amtrak travel at a later time or on a later date.

Service Animal Must Remain on Floor

A service animal must sit under the passenger's seat or at his or her feet. Service animals are not allowed to sit in the aisle, on seats or on beds.

Walking Your Service Animal

If the train schedule permits, you may walk your service animal at station stops provided that you stay within reasonable proximity to the train and re-board promptly when the conductor notifies you that the train is about to depart. If you plan to walk your animal during the trip, please notify the conductor when you first board the train. Some routes may have limited or no stops for the duration of your trip, so we encourage you to check schedules before you make your travel plans.

Amtrak employees are not responsible for the care or supervision of any passenger's service animal.

Making Reservations

If you're traveling with a service animal, visit or call us at 1-800-USA-RAIL (1-800-872-7245) to make a reservation. We’ll reserve an accessible seat or space for you and your service animal (if desired) and give you some information about intermediate station stops. For TTY service, call 1-800-523-6590. Agents are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.