Dogs Can Now Ride the Subway in Madrid for Free

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Subway riders in Madrid might soon notice that their fellow passengers are looking a little cuter—and a lot furrier—than usual. That’s because the city is now granting free rides to pet dogs, as long as they’re muzzled and attached to a leash.

Cristina Cifuentes, the Madrid regional premier, announced the new allowance at a press conference earlier this week, according to Euro Weekly News. The regulations were passed thanks to the efforts of local dog owners, who have launched campaigns and online petitions to make Madrid’s underground transit system more canine-friendly. Previously, only service dogs or small dogs in carriers were allowed on trains.

The change comes with a few restrictions. In addition to the muzzle and leash—which must be less than 20 inches long— dogs can only travel in the train’s last car. They only get to travel for free during non-peak hours, meaning you’ll have to shell out some cash if you want to take Fido on the subway between 7:30 to 9:30 a.m., 2 to 4 p.m., and 6 to 8 p.m. However, vacationers will be happy to know that July and August are free months for dogs, and there’s no charge on weekends or bank holidays. Meanwhile, animal lovers with multiple pets will likely be sad to learn that they're only allowed to travel with one dog at a time.

While some Madrid residents are reportedly wary of allergies or rambunctious canine antics, others are excited that they’ll now be able to take their best non-human friends out for a day on the town. Meanwhile, Spain now joins the list of European countries that conditionally allow dogs on local trains, including Italy, England, and Norway. 

[h/t Euro Weekly News]