Are You Flying to Washington Dullus (IAD)? A Dogs Airport Review


Today’s post will be short and sweet.

We rarely do airport reviews; after all, someone else is doing it better than we would. (Thanks, Mary-Alice!)  But, sometimes you just feel compelled to write a review because something is either so terrible you must put it “out there” or something is so fabulous you just have to share.

Our review of Washington Airport is because of the latter. Washington Airport, Dear Reader, has the best pet relief station, ever.

The pet relief station is not large. It’s not an exotic garden. It’s not even as if you opened the door to some Doggy Nirvana. Nope. But folks – this is what makes it perfect – the pet relief station is on this side of security and is indoors.

Normally, if you want the luxury of taking your dog out for a bathroom break, you have to go outside of the airport. Now, many airports have some lovely outdoor spaces. Miami, for example, has really pretty little gardens, complete with grass, benches, white picket fence and even art. You go outside the terminal,  enjoy the space – assuming the weather is clement – and then … ugh … you go back through security. Again. Ugh (again).

But not at Washington Dullus, folks. Nope.  Here the thinking that has gone into the pet relief area is absolutely amazing. Amazing. It. is. awesome.

The space is large enough even for bigger dogs. The synthetic grass is self-cleaning. In fact, before you leave, you press a red button and can hear the water rinsing away any of your dog’s business.  Poop bags and a bin for disposal are available. Heck, they even have a kitty litter area for folks travelling with cats!

There is no bench in the area, but there is plenty of space to place your carry on to the side and a cute white picket fence corals your pet into the space, keeping your pet safe and free to wonder … OFF LEASH!

I enjoyed the run. My pee break … . Heck I even … ahhmmmm.

So yes, Washington Airport may not have the best duty free in the world. It may be crowded and the decor feels really dated. But, Dear Reader, they really understand the needs of those travelling with their pets! And … they not only have one pet relief area; they also have two indoor and two outdoor areas.

That, my friends, is service.  Here are the details!

Locations inside the concourse:

Adjacent to Gate A32, next to the Virgin Atlantic Club
Across from Gate D1

Locations outside the Main Terminal:

Look for Pet Relief Areas on opposite ends of the Main Terminal. Exit the terminal doors near the United Airlines Ticket Counter and turn right, or exit the terminal doors near the Delta Air Lines Ticket Counter and turn left. There is also a relief area outside, adjacent to baggage claim number 1.

Hit the button and Go! How easy is that?


Please make sure you use the relief areas with respect (clean up after your pet) so that this fantastic gift to those of us travelling with our pets remains. With a little luck, the concept might even catch on!

Now that we know this, if the choice is for us between one airport or Washington, we are choosing Washington. Hands down.

Does your airport have something better?  If not, we invite you to send them the link to this post and ask them when they will implement the same?


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10 Comments on “Are You Flying to Washington Dullus (IAD)? A Dogs Airport Review

  1. Thats a very cool airport. I travel quite a bit and have trained my two Chihuahua girls to ring their poochie bells on the side of their carry bag when they need to go potty. Then we can go to the “ladies room” and use a puppy pad which I place on the floor. After use I just dispose of it and use a fresh one next time.

    • I love love love that idea Janine! Brilliant in fact! Anyone with a puppy should do this if they know they are going to travel. I know that it is a source of worry for the bipeds that they don’t know if I need to go … providing the communication tool is just brilliant thank you for sharing with us and our readers!

    • I think we underestimate the psychological “relax” that comes from this … ! We love it. I do hope more airports follow suit.

  2. What a ‘relief’. I hope more airports follow Washingtons lead. With just a little bit of thought, such a lot of stress taken out for the dog owners. If all airports were like this, we might feel brave enough to take a flight ourselves 🙂

    • True Lisa! as a result we find ourselves asking our travel agent to book us via this airport when possible! Goes to show it makes a huge difference! (Love the pun!)

  3. Wish every airport would be like this, it’s the only way it should be, 🙂

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