Pet Friendly Airports: Exploring Phoenix Sky Harbor

The Pet Relief Areas of Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport

Curious about Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport and the pet relief areas found here? Here's an interview with Claire Simeone Stern, the Public Information Officer at PHX, who can tell you more about the facility and how things work.

Thanks for the info, Claire!

How many designated pet areas are there at this airport, and what amenities are offered? 

Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport has three pet parks, one outside each of our three terminals. The Bone Yard is located at the northwest corner of Sky Harbor's busiest terminal, Terminal 4. It opened in December 2003 and is approximately 2700 square feet.

The Paw Pad is located on the northwest corner of Terminal 3 and is approximately 2200 square feet. It opened in May 2005. The Pet Patch is our most recently constructed pet park. It opened in May 2009 and is located on the northeast corner of Terminal 2. The Pet Patch is nearly 490 square feet.

All three of Sky Harbor's pet parks are fully fenced and feature Mutt Mitts for cleaning up after your pet. The Bone Yard and Pet Patch have absorbent doggie litter and the Pet Pad has evergreen turf. The Bone Yard and Pet Pad both have water spigots as well.

Each park is maintained regularly by our staff.

What is the history of this pet friendly addition? 

Back in 2003 our staff really saw a need for a pet park, which sparked the idea for the Bone Yard outside Sky Harbor's busiest terminal. Prior to the construction of the Bone Yard, there really wasn't any place for owners to take their pets for a bathroom break or to stretch their legs.

Sky Harbor has a significant amount of animals that come to the airport, travel through the airport, or work at the airport. We have service animals traveling with their companions, working dogs who are part of the Phoenix Police K-9 team at the airport, traveling pets, and many people bring their pets to the airport when they come to pick up family and friends.

Do you have to leave security to reach these areas? 

Yes, all three pet parks are located outside the terminals.

How many dogs can use the areas at once? Are their any guidelines to follow and have their been any crowding issues?

We haven't experienced any crowding issues. Owners are asked to pick up after their dogs.

Do you have staff members specifically assigned to supervise the pet area?

No. Although we do have maintenance staff assigned to maintain the three pet parks.

What advice do you have for travelers with pets?

We always advise that people who are planning to travel with their pets contact their airline directly to find out about the airline's policies. In Phoenix, because of our summer heat, many airlines have strict policies about checking a pet as cargo when the weather gets to certain temperatures.

Are there any future improvements or expansions planned?

We don't have any current plans to change or enhance our pet parks, but we are always looking for feedback from our customers on what we can do to improve. Customers are encouraged to email us directly at with suggestions or questions.

Where does the funding come from for projects like this?

Our pets parks are funded through revenue generated here at Sky Harbor.

What is your favorite part about the pet area at your airport? Any fun stories to share?

I love being able to tell people that we have three pet parks - we are incredibly pet friendly! In fact, one day as I was walking through Terminal 3, I heard baa-ing. Someone had traveled with their goat! So many people travel with their pets and bring their pets to the airport when they come to pick up their loved ones, so we see pets here all the time.


Claire Simeone Stern is the Public Information Officer at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport and she is also an animal lover. She has a dog named Sweetie and a (slightly crazy) cat named Vito. Visit Sky Harbor online at or follow them on Twitter at  


Editor's Note: This post was originally published in November 2010 and has been updated with new information.


PetRelocation Team




United States
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