Cruise Ship Service Animal

We work with all of the major cruise lines to help ensure that guests traveling with a service animal meet each port of call’s requirements. It is important to know that even though a pet may remain on board it still may need an in transit permit or island’s permission to dock.

As a first step it is most important that you contact the cruise line and receive advance permission for your service animal. A service dog is defined as “any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability.” Service dogs are not considered pets.

Evidence that a dog is a service dog (not emotional or psychiatric support) is required by certain islands. Service dogs are permitted to accompany the person with a disability in all public areas, including dining venues. While in public areas, service dogs must be on a leash, harness or other restraining device. Due to health regulations, service dogs are not permitted in pools, whirlpools or spas.

Often times you must notify the ship at least 30 days in advance if relief areas or refrigerated space for dog food is necessary.

If the guest chooses to disembark the ship at a port at which the service dog must remain onboard, the guest must make arrangements to ensure that the dog is cared for. Note that the ship’s staff is not required to care for the dog, nor can the dog be left in the stateroom unattended.

Guests are responsible for obtaining all required documents for the animal to depart the ship in ports of call and at final destination. For document requirements, visit:


A copy of these permits must be carried on the ship, and a copy left with Guest Relations Desk upon boarding the ship.

Our Documentation Services range from $250 – $495 depending on your island itinerary and ports of call.