Dog's Life: Travel
Dog-Friendly Travel Tips - Southeast
Dozens of destinations for you and your co-pilot

From al fresco dining in Asheville, N.C., to swimming in the shallow waters off Shell Island, Fla., Bark readers have sniffed out the best dog-friendly destinations for summer in the Southeast.

Duck in the Outer Banks, North Carolina is one of the best places to visit with you dog. Duck loves dogs!!! — Karla Gutierrez-Pugh

We live in the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia and we have an endless amount of trails and parks to bring our doggies to. Whether we trek loops on the Appalachian Trail, visit the Shenandoah River or just traverse our backyard, we are blessed by location! — Angela Chevalier

In North Augusta, S.C., there is a beautiful trail system called the Greeneway. Most of the trail is shaded, and the entire trail is paved. A large part of it goes along the Savannah River. It’s just beautiful and peaceful there. — Mimi Hopson

The dog beach at Lover's Key State Park on the West coast of Florida. My dogs love it! Beautiful white sand, shallow calm water, and secluded so it's safe for them to run off-leash. — Trish Scelfo

Barkwells in Ashville, NC!!! Each cabin has its own fenced in yard and the whole facility is fenced in, as well. Dogs can socialize, as can the humans. The city of Ashville is so dog friendly! Dogs can go in most shops and most outdoor restaraunts. There is no better place to take your dogs on vacation. — Jordan Stoune

The beautiful beach at Cape San Blas, Fla., is pet-friendly 24/7— the best we have visited. Lady can’t wait to go back this year. She has yet to capture a sand crab, but that is not for any lack of diligence. — Kay Stephenson

Here in St.Petersburg Florida we are close to the beach, but the not to miss spot is the Love My Dog Resort. In addition to the daycare areas that are all artificial turf, with misting systems, wading pools and tons of toys, they have a huge water park that rivals any human park I've ever seen. The address is 6427 54th Ave. N. — Lori Fricker

Pennie has a great time at the beach at Amelia Island, Florida. Amelia Island is the most pet friendly city I've ever encountered. The Marriott Hotel is super dog-friendly and my family (including Pennie) were made to feel right at home. I loved this place. She had a blast running around on the beach off leash and no one to get upset at her. It's an awesome place for the family and your best canine loyal friend. — Patricia Sparks

We love to take our water loving dogs, a Black Lab and a Golden Retriever, to St. Augustine, FL. They have many pet friendly beach rentals,as well as a few restaurants. Very historic city, that is beautiful to tour by foot with your four legged children. The coast is amazing, and is a fun spot for the furries to frolic and enjoy their vacation! — Nicole Ciulla

St. George Island in Florida. Great place to bring your dog..... pet friendly to the max!!!!! Lots of old Florida charm, with a definite leaning towards our furry four footers...... — Marisa Manville

If you love the outdoors you've got to head to the mountains of North Carolina with your dog. Near the towns of Boone, Blowing Rock & Sugar Mountain are tons of trails. I had the pleasure of living there for a few years and go back every chance I get. All levels of trails from easy to difficult high in the mountains or along the rivers. Some are right off the Blue Ridge Parkway while others are nestled in the Forrest. From the spring until the fall it's beautiful there. All the towns are very dog friendly as are many accommodations and the people very welcoming too. If you need any help check out a small outdoor store called Footsloggers in Blowing Rock for help with maps and trails among other things. — Nancy Bahls

Barkwells in NC!! You can even bring your horse. They have dog doors and gated porches in the cabins and plenty of dog play areas. — Lisa Ammirati

Panama City Florida, home of the world's most beautiful beaches, allows dogs on the waterfront at the Pier Park shopping and dining complex (also dog-friendly!). Window-shop, dine, and enjoy the snow-white sands and turquoise waters of the Gulf of Mexico together. Then rent a boat and take a day trip to the center of Shell Island, where the shallow waters and uninhabited white beaches at the boater's anchorage are a dog-friendly canine nirvana. — Stephanie Somerset

Submit your own dog-friendly travel tip!

More Reader Travel Tips

Dog's Life: Travel
Dog-Friendly Travel Tips - Northeast
Dozens of destinations for you and your co-pilot

From St. Augustine Beaches, to a dog camp in Morris, N.Y., Bark readers reveal their must-go dog-friendly summer destinations in the Northeast.

Fourpeaks Adirondack Backcountry Camps in Jay, N.Y.: 700 acres of breathtaking beauty. You cannot count the stars. No leashes. I have never met a crabby person there and most people bring friendly dogs. It is heaven. — Kathleen Hurley

Nothing better for a family/dog vacation: Provincetown, Mass., at the easternmost tip of Cape Cod. It’s easy to find a motel or inn that takes dogs, and when you walk down Commercial Street, merchants have bowls of water out for thirsty canines, and many stores and outdoor restaurants let you bring your dog in. There are beautiful (and free) beaches where you can take your dog on off-peak hours; a great dog park, Pilgrim Bark Park; and nearly everywhere you walk offers scenic views of the Atlantic. — John Stemen & Lisa Cohen

Burlington, Vt: Swimming in the lake, three off-leash dog parks, outdoor dining on Church Street, walking the 13-mile bike path next to the lake, exploring trails in the Burlington Intervale and Ethan Allen Homestead. — Cindy Kilgore

Do the dew! Dewey Beach, Del., that is. Dewey Beach is a dog-friendly town. The beach is available for dog play before 9:30 in the morning and after 5:30 in the evening. Every entrance to the beach and most street corners have free doggie bags and trash cans. It truly is better when you don’t have to leave your best friends behind. — Lisa Rufft

If you find yourself in Providence, the East Side is a wonderful network of walkable, tree-lined streets connecting a couple of cute neighborhoods ... each with super dog-friendly businesses! Wayland Square on one end has a dog friendly book store (Books on the Square), Cafe (The Edge Cafe - with home-made dog biscuits), Wine Store (Wayland Square Fine Wines) and dog boutique (Plaid and Stripe). A short (1.5 mile) stroll down Blackstone Boulevard with its tree-filled central park takes you to Lippit Park, home to an awesome and super dog-friendly Farmers Market on Saturday mornings all summer (there's even a doggy bakery, Jack's Snacks). From there, you can wander back up Hope Street to another stretch of restaurants and cafes (Seven Stars, for one!) with dog-friendly outdoor seating. — Laurelin

The Daniel Rust House B&B in Coventry CT. Pet friendly and they'll watch your dog while you meander! — Elinor Bernstein

Two well behaved dogs are allowed to stay for free with their owners at the beautiful Paradise Point Cottages on Lake Umbagog located at: P.O. Box 98 Rte.26 Errol, New Hampshire. 603-482-3834. The owners, Ricky and Linda Blais have 3 yellow Labs. A most beautiful spot to relax and vacation on the NH/ME border and near Canada. Wildlife abounds like moose and loons, deer, bears and of course the natural beauty of Lake Umbagog and peace and quiet and the beauty of sales tax free New Hampshire. Beautiful clean cabins await you for your stay. Something for everyone year round in New Hampshire's Great North Woods. Highly recommended. —Luanne Nieder-Goodall

The best off leash fun is Bare Cove in Hingham, MA. Dogs are expected to be under voice control as many people use this fantastic place for family fun, exercise and simply enjoying nature whether or not they own a dog. There are trails through the woods or paved paths for the less adventurous type. Fresh water can be found but the larger bodies of water are brakish and perfect for swimming (dogs and humans alike!). — Joy Higgins

Mention the "dog beach" and our Portuguese Water dog, "Max,” goes bonkers! Off Rt. 85 on the Marlboro/Hudson, MA line, this pet-friendly beach area is small and not "advertised,” but very visible as it's part of Fort Meadow reservation. It's a short walk off the road through some woods. We've never seen a dog fight or any misbehaviour and humans can even go in and get wet!! — Bonnie Elman

We had a great vacation with our dog last summer at the Interlaken Inn in the Southern Berkshires. Great dog friendly lodging surrounded by cute little towns. Plus the Inn has a lovely lake with a beach for human and canine swimming. And the Inn supports a local animal shelter. — Jen B.

At least half of our adventure is driving to our destination. I don't know if you can name a particular hotel/motel chain, but we definitely recommend LaQuinta. Pets are always welcome! — Sister Mary Winifred

If you are staying in the Portland, Maine area the best hotel to stay at is The Inn by the Sea in Cape Elizabeth, ME. They treat your dog like they treat you. They have a Special Package called incredible pets, that includes your dogs own PERSONALIZED LL Bean dog bed, made in maine dog toys, turn down treat, spa treatments, room service menus, the works! Plus you are close to Fort Williams Park, several local dog parks, Old Port in Portland and the beach all great, scenic dog walking places!! — Gloria Peterson

Boothbay Harbor, Maine, Lots of Dog Friendly shops....lots of water bowls,pet friendly accomodations, miles of preserve trails and The Creative Turtle..dog friendly art gallery specializing in Pet Portraits & eco friendly dog items!! Small harbor town ....perfectly Maine! — Anita Roelz

I grew up around Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park in Maine. There are tons of dog-friendly B&Bs, restaurants and businesses (everyone has a dog water dish outside of their store). And, there are amazing trails for every ability. It’s a must-go every summer for us. — Laurelin Sitterly

We love the Highland House in Cape May, New Jersey! And, Sunset Beach is a doggie friendly beach and a short mile from Highland House!!! Doggie friendly dining in Cape May is easy to find, but our favorite restaurant is Aleathea's Restaurant at the Inn at Cape May. Our "kidz" enjoyed their dinners while seated in very comfortable dining chairs (same as Mom and Dad's). They enjoyed a bowl of ice cold water and a dinner combination of steak and chicken on china plates! Highly recommend Highland House, Sunset Beach and Aleathea's ♥ — Janie Lamberton

How about Grapehounds - an event in NY and Virginia each year that combines wine tasting and adopted retired racing greyhounds - best part - all of the proceeds go to help greyhound adoption groups in these states! [Seneca Lake, NY, July 28-31; VA event in May] — Cindy Siddon

St. Augustine Beaches and town are dog friendly. What a delight to watch our 2 dogs run on the beach! Many vacation homes to rent are also dog friendly there. It was wonderful not having to leave them in a kennel for the duration of our trip. Go to St. Augustine's with your best buddy! — Cheryl Lee

My dogs and I vote for Canine Outdoor Adventures at Glen Highland Farm in Morris, NY. They host a fantastic off-leash group dog camp every year with amazing teachers. Camp size is about 40 informed & enlightened dog lovers and their dogs. The Farm itself is gorgeous - trails thru hilltop meadows, hemlock forests, a creek with tons of hideaway dog beaches. In addition to Camp they offer the Getaway where you and your dog(s) can enjoy 2-night min stay in one of their RVs, cabins or tents and enjoy the 175-acre property at your leisure. We've come back every year (for Camp and a Getaway) for the last 6 years. The 6-hour drive is totally worth it! — Joycelene Padilla

L'Oreal Day in August in NJ...so much fun and the goodie bags are legendary! — Debbie Viney

After the summer has sizzled and the leaves are brilliant gold and crimson, Shelburne Museum in Burlington, Vermont, opens its doors to the dogs of Vermont on September 18th. Over 1200 dogs and their human friends descend on the grounds for a day of agility, contests, training demos, frisbee lessons, and everything dog. For those carrying the purse, there are over a hundred dog-related vendors. For Vermonters, it really marks the calendar of the seasons changing from warm to cold. — Cindy Kilgore

For an absolutely heavenly time with my dogs, I head to Dog Mountain in St Johnsbury, VT. Founded by the late Stephen Huneck, an avid dog lover and artist, he created the Dog Chapel on Dog Mountain as a tangible expression of the deep and healing connection between humans and dogs. Dog Mountain is a place where people and their dogs can romp amid acres of green grass, wildflowers and sculptures that celebrate all the best things canine. Water, treats, agility obstacles and of course, The Dog Chapel are all there for the exploring as are trails and ponds. Inside the Dog Chapel, the walls are lovingly covered with notes and photos of dogs from all over the world---some in memory of a beloved dog, some in celebration. Stephen's wife, Gwen, and supporters of Dog Mountain are there to greet you and answer questions. A lovely store (that is dog friendly!) which carries the work of Stephen Huneck is there for you to browse for the perfect gift for a dog lover you know or yourself. Your purchase helps to keep Dog Mountain open free of charge for humans and canines from all over the world. — Mary Ramsden

The creme de la creme of 4-Season Inns, designed for dogs AND their owners in a beautiful, centrally located region of VT. The food is delicious, the accommodations fantastic, with their own agility ring, and deluxe "boarding house" if you want to get some time without "the kids." A class act, and very much worth the effort. The Paw House Inn, West Rutland, VT. — Katrina Anderson

Mystic Connecticut is a great place for dog owners.  You can take early morning walks on the water, and some of the main tourist attractions, including Mystic Seaport and Olde Mystik Village allow you to bring your dog.  There are some good outdoor dining spots, and there are plenty of chain hotels and inns that allow dogs. I've been twice with my dog Teddy the last several years, and plan to return again soon. — John Stemen

A great Fall adventure is going to Deep Creek Lake in Maryland.  Summer is full also but in the Fall the Dogs have more access to the parks. — Laurie Scible

Submit your own dog-friendly travel tip!

More Reader Travel Tips

Dog's Life: Travel
Dog-Friendly Travel Tips - Southwest
Dozens of destinations for you and your co-pilot

From cabins in Oklahoma's San Bois Mountains to Arizona's "Christmas City," Bark readers know the best stomping spots for dogs in the Southwest.


We volunteered for a week at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary (Kanab, Utah) and it was one of the best vacations ever! We spent our days feeding, cleaning, walking and socializing the animals — giving them the best chance to be adopted. The people there were amazing, the setting is beautiful and the whole experience … inspiring. –Richard Everson


Our favorite hiking area is the Sycamore Canyon Wilderness (easy driving distance from Flagstaff, AZ). These are trails for hearty hikers, varying from 4 to 10 miles of moderate difficulty but the scenery is spectacular with rock formations and a wide range of flora plus a variety of springs. –Sara Lennon


Every summer my dogs and I head up to Lost Man Trail outside of Aspen for some serious hiking. We spend the day trekking above the timberline and taking in incredible views and the three lakes along the way. We head back to Aspen, one of the most dog-friendly cities anywhere, and treat ourselves to dinner and a soak in the tub. –Aaron Phillips


Whenever we’re in Austin, our family visits the Emma Long Metropolitan Park, for a walk along Turkey Creek Trail. Our favorite time is spring to take in the wildflowers in bloom. Our dogs love splashing in the creek. It’s an easy hike and we always pack a picnic. –Donna Cardinale


Decker Creek Bed & Breakfast & Biscuit is a great retreat for pets and people. It is located just outside of Austin, Texas. There are a couple of cabins for rent with lots of great outdoor space. This is a must do weekend getaway if you live in Texas! — Elizabeth Samuels


Take your dog(s) to Prescott, AZ—Everybody's Home Town.” It offers a large dog park, a dog-friendly town plaza and many beautiful lake and mountain trails. It is the home of the "World's Oldest Rodeo,” Whiskey Row, Thumb Butte and known as "Arizona's Christmas City.” It is also the home of our two dogs, Dugan (Shepherd mix) and Danica (Golden Retriever). —  Anthony Patricks


Anywhere we travel, we try to stay with Drury Inns. They have been very dog-friendly and safe & clean hotels for us along any of our adventures when traveling with my Jack Russell Terriers. They provide pet areas with clean-up materials outside and offer assistance with any clean-up needs you may have inside your room during your stay. I don't usually "name names" but this hotel chain has really been a reliable stop for us during our travels. — Lori Miller


Pup-friendly hiking and cabins at Robbers Cave State Park in Oklahoma’s San Bois Mountains. — Jo-Ann Shuma

Submit your own dog-friendly travel tip!

More Reader Travel Tips

Dog's Life: Travel
Dog-Friendly Travel Tips - Midwest
Dozens of destinations for you and your co-pilot

From Woofstock in Chicago to bocce ball games in Minneapolis, Bark readers know where to find dog-friendly summer fun in the Midwest.

Going on the sandbars on the Wisconsin River: boat for miles ’til you find a secluded sandbar for your group — dogs included —  grill, swim, throw the Frisbee. Everyone has fun and stays cool. — Lisa Huber

Check out Chicago area neighborhood festivals, many of which are dog- friendly (not all, so be sure to check). One of my personal favorites is Custer’s Last Stand on Custer Ave. in Evanston in June. Besides dogs, I’ve also seen people there with parrots on their shoulders and carrying a pouch of ferrets. — Lizzi K.

Lake Superior Hiking Trail from Duluth, Minn., to the Canadian border. Tip: Leash up your dogs at trailheads, but if they’re friendly with people and other dogs, let them run free once you’re a quarter-mile out. I rarely run into more than a few people in 10 miles. — Karen Neal

Broad Ripple neighborhood in Indianapolis. Why? The Monon Trail is great for dog walking and Three Dog Bakery for starters. Best of all, numerous dog-friendly restaurants including Petite Chou, which serves frosty paws all summer; the Monon Food Company, with a large dog-friendly deck; Plump’s Last Shot, and the most popular local dog hangout, Flatwater. At The Monkey’s Tale/Jazz Cooker, you can listen to live music on the patio with your dog, provided that he or she doesn’t decide to join the band with a good howl. — Bunny Davis

We love to hang out at the leash-free Canine Country, near St. Louis, Mo., on lazy summer days. My three dogs and I take beautiful hikes and swims on 223 acres of farmland. My dogs don’t herd sheep, but there are some available to smell, along with some chickens. We even got into a tussle with a skunk. It’s truly an adventure! — Kristen Weber

We always loved Door County Wisconsin the state parks are great they all require leashes but so what there beautiful. — James Doorey

Bloomington, IN is a great place for pets and their people! With several State and National Parks within 20 minutes drive there is a ton to do, and all outdoors. Great hiking, kayaking, swimming, basically everything people and dogs love to do! There is even a local dog bakery in Nashville, IN only 20 miles away! —J Jenkins

My favorite travel spot with my dog and all previous dogs is Good Hart, Michigan. We stay in a cottage on the beach of Lake Michigan. — Patty Offenberg

We recently took a trip to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in northern Minnesota — the one million-acre area lies within the boundaries of the four-million-acre Superior National Forest. This is the largest designated wilderness in the eastern U.S. with 2,000 campsites, over 1,000 lakes — heaven for wilderness trekkers, paddlers and pooches. — Laura Reinhardt

Gunflint Lodge in Northeast MN. — Cathy Whitney

Here in Chicago, summer is doggie heaven. There are so many options of fun things to do here I couldn't ever list them all! Around here, they don't just call them the "dog days of summer" because of the heat. I'll list a few of my favorites. The summer mantra for Chicagoans is "cooler by the lake" and Lake Michigan is definitely the summer place to be. Unfortunately dogs are not generally allowed on the city beaches, but we make up for that by having several doggie beaches in Chicago and the suburbs. These are off leash play areas where your dog can take a dip or romp on the sand with their friends. Here is my girl Bianca at the beach. A fun and different lake option is to take a Canine Cruise! There is a cruiseline here which offers 1.5 hour cruises for dogs and their owners which go on the Chicago River and into Lake Michigan. They run on Sundays from July to September. Another fun thing to do in the summer is to go to one of the city's neighborhood festivals. We have tons of festivals scattered throughout the summer, many of which are dog friendly (not all, so be sure to check!). One of my personal favorites is Custer's Last Stand, which is held on a weekend in June around Custer Ave. in Evanston. Besides dogs, I've also seen people there with parrots on their shoulders and carrying a pouch of ferrets. The Andersonville Midsommarfest is another fun one I often attend with my dogs. There are also several pet-centered festivals and fundraisers during the summer such as Woofstock at Pooch Park. After a fun summer day, you might like to dine out with your dog. There are quite a few dog friendly patios at Chicago restaurants, where your dog is welcome to join you for dinner. If you are in the city limits you do need to check if the restaurant has a "Dog Friendly Dining" license, otherwise they legally are not supposed to allow dogs (and in all cases dogs are not allowed inside the restaurants.) This only applies to Chicago proper, I'm not sure what the rules are in the suburbs, if any. I have a list of these dog friendly restaurants on my website, Chicago Canine. Note that some may not allow dogs during certain busy times or may have other restrictions, so it is always good to call ahead and check. — Lizzi K.

In Minneapolis, there is a great dog-friendly bar. They hold dog specific events, like "Beer With Your Buddy". I will be spending the fantastic MN summer nights playing Bocce Ball and socializing with my dog. —Leslie

After our 5-month winters in Northern Wisconsin, where I live, my Newfoundlands and I look forward to the summer when we can get out on the unfrozen lakes! We have many lakes up here, but throwing a stick or ball has its limits. That's why I try to take my Newfs to the closest Water Rescue Training Workshop and/or Water Tests during our short summer. At these workshops or tests, you can actually see the Newf's face changing as he takes his job seriously, whether he is bringing out a line to someone he thinks is drowning, or pulling a boat in to shore. Whatever people do with their dogs in the summer, my opinion is that they should try to incorporate something fun that the dog was originally bred for (for mixes, finding what the dog is best at would be a fun challenge!) — Barbara Suozzi

Submit your own dog-friendly travel tip!

More Reader Travel Tips

Dog's Life: Travel
Dog-Friendly Travel Tips - West
Dozens of destinations for you and your co-pilot

From a lovely cove at Lake Tahoe, Nev., to one of the country's best off-leash parks in Redmond, Wash., Bark readers reveal their favorite dog-oriented destinations for summer in the West.


We live in beautiful North Idaho, where we are surrounded by pristine lakes, including Lake Pend Oreille, Lake Coeur d’Alene, Spirit Lake, Hayden Lake, Priest Lake and more. We love to go kayaking, as does our two-year-old yellow Lab, Jake, who wears his own dog life vest. — Kathy Schneider


It’s anything but a secret here in Northern California, but Carmel-by-the-Sea is probably the most dog-friendly spot you can find. The beach is available for off-leash dogs, and all sizes and shapes, mutts and purebreds, romp in the surf and chase balls. Afterwards, on a walk into town, you’ll find many places that welcome dogs, including quite a few outdoor restaurants. Of course, everyone is very conscientious about poop pickup, which helps keep it a great experience. — Teddy Wilson


Zephyr Cove beach at Lake Tahoe, on the Nevada side, has a dog-friendly portion on the far end. A wonderful place to take dogs. My two learned how to swim there just last summer. —  Karis Daphne


Spend the weekend in Redmond, Wash.: The outstanding 40-acre, off-leash dog park at Marymoor Park is doggie heaven. Dogs are welcome at the Redmond Saturday Market (open from May to October), outdoor movies, restaurant patios, many stores and miles of trails. —  Mary Schilder


If you are traveling near Portland, Ore., try Sandy Delta Park; most of it is off-leash. Lots of trails and access to the Sandy River, which is great for wading and playing in, and easy on bare feet and paws. — Victoria Bettancourt


The North end of Stinson Beach, California. This is a haven for any dog who simply likes to be near the ocean and in the fresh cool air of the California coast! Just past the lifeguard stands (the public portion of Stinson Beach) dogs are free to roam off-leash and anywhere on the beach and in the waves. If you forgot the Frisbee or the the ball, not to worry...there is an endless supply of fetching sticks, beach logs and kelp ropes—not to mention the almost two miles of pure beautiful luscious sand for an afternoon of digging indulgence! — Ashley Hathaway


Haven't made it up there yet, but I am dying to take our pup Corbin to Plumpjack Squaw Valley Inn, do some hiking and hopefully swimming in the lake. I was in Squaw Valley over the winter and saw dogs everywhere! Been dying to go back with my own dog ever since. — Natalia Martinez


Hotel Indigo in San Diego rocks! There is a terrace with an enclosed dog potty area and you dog is welcome everywhere in the hotel including the restaurant and bar! — Jaqi Minyard


San Diego is a dog's paradise! We have several dog beaches, many off-leash parks, restaurants that allow dogs on the patios and outdoor malls where you can bring your dogs. It's truly the best city for a dog to live! — Maggie Alexander


Moonstone Lodge in Cambria, California. Very dog friendly accommodations in cottages. The beautiful Central California coastline with dog friendly beach areas. Dog friendly outdoor dining in town and a great big dog park for off leash fun. — Edna Ball


If you are in the California Redwoods near Eureka, California, there is a beautiful hiking trail called The Headwaters. The walk is easy with lots of dogs. Beautiful ferns, oaks, redwoods and a stream for a doggie quick-dip. I haven't been there for a year since the death of my dog, he loved it. It was our place. I advise checking it out for beauty and tranquility. —Kathe Gruenthal


Don't forget Shoup Park in Los Altos, CA. Dogs must be on leash, but there is a great stream, Adobe Creek, to play in. There are picnic tables and a tot play area for pup's human brothers and sisters. —Sheryl Keller


We go to Beach Camp with our friends from dog training class in Cayucos Beach, California. Cayucos is an extremely dog friendly town. We stay at Cayucos Beach Inn, a dog friendly hotel for all size dogs (they even have a dog potty area and a doggy bath to clean off your salty, sandy dog). We take the dogs down to the beach where they are allowed to run off leash and play. Many of the restaurants in town are dog friendly as well. We look forward to the trip all year and have a blast while we are there. —Elisa Becker


The Grey Rock hiking trail, off Poudre Canyon in Colorado, offering great scrambly-up rocks, breath-taking views for humans, and wonderful new smells (everything from deer and elk to rabbits!) to entertain the enquiring nose! — Kris Paige


My own back yard! I live an hour out of Las Vegas, in 'high plains desert', and my dog is not fond of car travel. But my Mastiff Chico likes to walk in the cool mornings, watch others swim in the pool from his spot in the shade of the patio, and then go inside for an ice cube and a nice nap on cool tile. — Pat Chapin


Are you planning your Las Vegas vacation for next March? Your furry pal enjoys nice weather too! There are various dog-friendly hotels on the strip. Don't miss out on Pet-a-Palooza every March, and enjoy the nice weather with your pup at one of the five dog parks in an 8 mile range from the south part of the strip. — Julie Plasencia


Historic Taft beach on the Oregon Coast has the best dog friendly hotel. We stayed at the Looking Glass Inn and were treated like royalty. The rooms are spacious and we got a special basket with towels, bowls, sheets( dogs can sleep on the beds) and treats. What is super great is the beach access is right out the door! There is lots of sand and driftwood to explore, not to mention sea lions swimming right off shore. Gryfyn ( my 8lb Brussel's Griffon) and I especially like seeing all the other dogs and their humans. We met a great Dane named Duke and many others. Taft is located on the South end of Lincoln City. Many great shops in walking distance. Truly doggie beach heaven. — Shelly Senter


Taking in all the Summer Dock Dog events. Great friends, wonderful dogs, and the event cant be beat for enjoying a nice summer weekend....like the one at the Bite of Seattle. — Tom Guffey


Bring your dog to Whidbey Island's Greenbank Farm. Located in the heart of Whidbey Island near Seattle, the Farm has a generous off-leash area for your dog to enjoy, with both open fields and forest providing several miles of trails. Just be sure to pick up after your puppy as the Farm is also home to organic farming programs. Enjoy wonderful loganberry pies at the Whidbey Pie Cafe or taste locally crafted afterwards. —Sharon Dunn


Our Greyhound Rescue Adoption group, Royal Hounds Greyhound Adoption, has informal walks with different names, The Ski Patrol, in the Greater Tacoma, WA. area, and the Green Lake Gallopers, in the greater Seattle area. Both groups pick different parks, trails, and other venues to walk their own personal hounds, and Greyhounds in foster care. —Lee Higley


Countless trips to the local dog park/swim area are on the agenda for Homer and I this summer, but our big adventure will be traveling to Cody, Wyoming. We've rented a house along a river and there is plenty of hiking nearby. — Kristen Hellstrom


If you're in San Francisco, visit Crissy Field and Baker Beach! Crissy Field is an off-leash dog beach with a shallow marsh for the water-averse in training. Baker Beach offers beautiful views of the Golden Gate Bridge and is dog and family-friendly. The cool Bay Area waters will keep your dog from overheating during warm summer days while you enjoy the sun and a picnic on the beach. — Deandra Ludovice

Submit your own dog-friendly travel tip!

More Reader Travel Tips

Dog's Life: Travel
Au Revoir, Mes Chiens
Visiting the world’s oldest dog cemetery
Au Revoir, Mes Chiens

The French do cemeteries like no other nation. A tourist’s must-see list may include any number of Parisian cemeteries, with the most popular being the Cimetière du Père-Lachaise, where sightseers pay homage to the likes of Honoré de Balzac, Marcel Proust, Edith Piaf, Jim Morrison and Oscar Wilde, and the Cimetière du Montparnasse, home to many Left Bank personalities such as Charles Baudelaire, Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir, among others. But off the beaten track is another gem, a burial ground that pays tribute to equally well-known stars such as Rin Tin Tin and Barry, the life-saving Saint Bernard.

The Cimetière des Chiens, established in 1899, is the oldest pet cemetery in the world and has an incredible history. Yet it is rarely visited these days. Set on the banks of the Seine, in the northwest Parisian suburb of Asnières-sur-Seine, the cemetery is slightly off the usual tourist route, but it’s well worth the short métro trip and brief walk to get there.

I was the only visitor on my morning trip there in February, and my experience was something I’ll not forget. It was very moving—simultaneously depressing and uplifting—to see how the pets were loved and missed, sometimes even decades after their deaths. The stories behind each epitaph could fill a book. Some have long been celebrated; for example, Barry the Saint Bernard has a large monument at the cemetery entrance. Barry belonged to the monks of the Alpine Hospice of the Great Saint Bernard, on the Swiss / Italian border, and, the monument says, after having saved the lives of 40 people, he was killed by the 41st.

Rin Tin Tin is another famous name. The German Shepherd television hero made 26 pictures for Warner Brothers before his death in 1932. A five-day-old Rin Tin Tin, his mother and some littermates had been rescued from a bombed kennel housing war dogs in France. Taken to America by Corporal Lee Duncan and other members of his battalion after World War I, the dog quickly found fame, and is said to have received 10,000 fan letters a week. After his death, Duncan arranged for Rin Tin Tin to be returned to the country of his birth. Even today, flowers and other gifts are left on his simple tombstone.

The composer of Carnival of the Animals, Camille Saint-Saëns, chose to lay his pets to rest here, as did novelist and dramatist Georges Courteline; actor, director and writer Sacha Guitry; and numerous princes and dukes. But for me, the real attraction of the cemetery is its celebration of ordinary pets—those upon whom the spotlight never shone, who never rubbed shins with famous people but who meant the world to their families. Dogs like Emma, “the Faithful companion and only friend in my life,” or Loulou, who, in 1895 at the age of only nine months, saved the family’s child from drowning, injuring herself in the process.

Other tearjerkers include Mémère, born in 1914, who was the mascot of the infantry for 15 years during World War I. The sculpture that adorns his grave poignantly stretches out a paw to a helmeted soldier. Or Frou Frou, who died of a broken heart after the death of her mistress in 1908.

Some sites are marked with a simple plaque and name, others with a photo, and many with incredibly decorative tombs and tributes. Besides flowers, I saw bowls of tennis balls, squeaky bones, leashes, soft toys—each one special to the dog lying beneath.

Strays are also interred here. In fact, there’s a monument to the 40,000th animal buried within the graveyard’s walls: a stray dog run over by a car near the cemetery gates in 1958. Many living strays can be seen hunting around the tombs and then resting on them, sunbathing or grooming.

Dogs are not the only pets commemorated at the cemetery; cats are also buried here. The graves of horses, pet rabbits, a monkey—whose tribute reads “Sleep, my dearest. You were the joy of my life”—not to mention birds, hamsters and even fish can be found as well.

The history of the cemetery is as interesting as the stories of the pets it contains. Before it came into existence, dead animals were usually thrown into the Seine, dumped around the city or discarded with rubbish. The health implications for a crowded city were immense, and a law came into force in 1891 requiring that corpses of domestic animals be interred at least 100 meters (328 feet) from habitation and that they be covered with soil at least one meter (3.28 feet) deep. And so the Anonymous French Society of the Cemetery for Dogs and Other Domestic Animals was founded on May 2, 1899, by attorney Georges Harmois and journalist and feminist Marguerite Durand. The cemetery, the first of its kind in the world, was officially opened that summer.

Marguerite Durand was an incredible character, an actress and rebel with multiple causes. She played many roles at the Comédie-Française, and then turned to journalism—a career move that was to change her life. After being sent by Le Figaro on an undercover assignment at an international feminist conference, she became a staunch advocate of women’s rights, publishing a daily feminist newspaper, La Fronde, in 1897. A leading suffragette, she organized several trade unions for female workers, lobbied for women to be involved in law and politics, and dedicated her life to promoting women’s rights. Her other passion was animals, and she was often seen strolling around Paris parks with her pet lion, Tigre, whom she had raised as a cub in her garden. (Tigre is also buried at the cemetery that Durand was responsible for creating, but, try as I might, I couldn’t find her. It’s a good excuse for another visit next time I’m in Paris!)

The grand entrance to the cemetery, designed by renowned Parisian architect Eugène Petit, features a portal in Art Nouveau style, flanked by two entrances for pedestrians. After its creation, the cemetery became increasingly successful, but later developed chronic difficulties. It closed briefly in 1987 and endured various changes of ownership and rescue plans; since 1997, it has been managed by the Asnières town council, and its future seems secure.

In a country renowned for its adoration of le chien, it’s not surprising that people have created such a picturesque place in which to celebrate their dogs’ lives. As one inscription notes, “Lover of the sea, may the Seine cradle your final repose.”

Dog's Life: Lifestyle
Happy Trails
Safety first in the great outdoors.
Dog Safety

Camping and hiking with your dog are two of life’s great pleasures, provided your pooch is well suited to the particular excursion and you’ve sufficiently prepared for the trip. The most important factor to consider is whether you truly believe your dog will enjoy herself. Is she well socialized and confident in new situations? Is she controllable around other people and pets? Does she bark at or chase birds, squirrels or other wild animals? Will the weather be too hot or too cold to ensure her comfort and safety? Naturally, you can’t predict the exact conditions of your adventure, but considering such matters might lead you to rethink or adjust your plans so everyone has a good time. Once you’ve decided it’s a go, here are some before-, duringand after-trip tips to make the experience more enjoyable.

Check the dog policies at the campground and/or hiking trails you plan on using to determine whether there are any rules you’re unwilling or unable to comply with. Learn about area hazards such as poisonous snakes, porcupines, disease-carrying ticks or waterborne parasites like giardia (the local ranger station is usually a good resource). Prepare in advance for potential mishaps by taking needle-nose pliers to remove porcupine quills, antihistamine for insect stings, or a sheet or nylon poncho to use as a two-person stretcher to carry an injured dog, and pack them in your dog’s first aid kit. Locate the nearest animal hospital at your destination in case of emergency.

Confirm that your dog is current on her rabies vaccine. If she’s due for other booster shots, consider having a titer done first to see if they’re really necessary. Make sure your dog is up-to-date on flea, tick and heartworm prevention if needed, and that her ID tags and microchip information are current as well.

Trim your dog’s nails to prevent them from tearing on rugged trails. Depending on the climate, you may want to bring along other outdoor dog gear, such as a jacket for cold weather or a cooling vest for hot weather. If you have a light- or pink-skinned dog, pet-safe sunscreen is also a wise purchase.

Take water from home or have bottled water on hand. Do not let your dog drink from streams or lakes, which can cause intestinal upset and the potential for ingesting bacteria or parasites like giardia. Other items to take include food and treats, toys, a collapsible dish, waste bags, a towel, any medications, a brush, first-aid kit, and an extra-long leash in case you need to tether her at your campsite. Decide where your dog will be sleeping and pack accordingly— a bed, soft crate, blankets or the like.

If you’re staying in a rented cabin, look around for rodent bait and traps, a common discovery in vacation rentals that sit unused much of the year. Check the closets, kitchen and hidden corners and remove anything that can harm your dog. If you’re camping in the great outdoors, make sure there’s adequate shade and shelter at your site.

On the trail, beware of heatstroke if it’s warm and humid. Provide frequent opportunities for her to drink water and rest, especially if she seems tired. Some dogs, in their desire to please, will overexert themselves to keep up with you, so it’s up to you to make sure she’s not overdoing it.

After your excursion, give your pooch a once-over, checking her ears, face, body and feet for any foxtails, burrs or ticks she may have picked up along the way. Check her paw pads for cuts, burns or stickers. Give her a quick brushing to remove the day’s dust and pollen. Then give her a well-deserved dinner, a belly rub and a good night’s rest. A bedtime story is optional!

Adapted from The Safe Dog Handbook, © 2009 by Melanie Monteiro; published by Quarry Books.Used with permission.

Dog's Life: Travel
Dog-Friendly Inns: Vail and Sturbridge
Bark's Picks

Antlers, Vail, Colo. Known for its stunning scenery and miles of dog-friendly trails, the Rocky Mountains around Vail, Colo., come alive in fall with glorious views of golden aspen trees. Book a stay at the Antlers at Vail hotel, a dogwelcoming and noted “Green Business,” which is offering reduced-rate stays in condominium suites complete with kitchens, fireplaces and spacious amenities.

Recommended dog treks include ones to Wheeler and Pitkins Lakes. Area festivals include an Oktoberfest and Vail’s Restaurant Month (Sept. 20 – Oct. 17).
Antlersvail.com 888.268.5377

The Inn at Restful Paws, Sturbridge, Mass. This charming, doginviting inn, only 60 miles away from Boston, is situated on over 31 acres with amenities that include groomed walking trails and dog play areas located throughout the property. Dog guests might also enjoy doing laps at Rosie B’s bone-shaped indoor swimming spa.

Recommended treks include nearby Brimfield State Forest and Wells State Park for hiking and woodland adventures. Festivals include a Harvest Festival at Charlton Orchards Farm & Winery, founded in 1733.
Restfulpaws.com 888.430.7297

Dog's Life: Travel
Hiking Mt. Whitney
Hounds in the high country

“I didn’t know dogs were allowed on this trail,” the woman said, watching as my two dogs leaped from the car. I had just pulled into the parking area at Whitney Portal, 13 miles west of Lone Pine, Calif., and we were getting ready to hike the Mt. Whitney Trail. Known to the Owens Valley Paiute as Too-man-go-yah, or “very old man,” Mt. Whitney—at 14,496 feet, the highest peak in the contiguous United States—is one of the most frequently climbed in the Sierra Nevada.

“Yes, dogs are allowed all the way to Trail Crest,” I replied. It’s true that dogs are not allowed on Mt. Whitney Summit or on the final 2.8 miles of trail. However, this leaves 8.2 miles of trail, three pristine alpine lakes, two trailhead campgrounds, and endless views of craggy Mt. Whitney and its surrounding peaks for you and your dogs to enjoy.

Begin your adventure at the wooden Mt. Whitney trail sign, located a short distance from the parking area. The trail, which is mostly dry gravel and rock surfaced, with several easy stream crossings, is well-graded and maintained. It rises up in long, gentle switchbacks before reaching Lone Pine Lake, 2.5 miles up the trail.

Beware of elevation gains, as the trail starts at 8,360 feet and reaches 13,600 feet at Trail Crest (the end of the line for dogs). When my dogs and I reached Lone Pine Lake, we had climbed over 1,500 feet, and I was already panting. However, watching them swim in the ice-blue water refreshed me, and with a bit of encouragement from them, we pressed on.

From Lone Pine Lake, the trail continues in a series of switchbacks over a small saddle, and then drops down into Outpost Camp, where there is a large meadow and several streams. To the south, a small waterfall cascades down a sheer granite wall. Straight ahead are stunning Whitney views.

From Outpost Camp, it is a 0.3-mile climb up short, steep switchbacks to Mirror Lake. We rested here and ate our lunch. The dogs enjoyed an extended swim, and my younger dog made an effort at trout fishing, snapping at the water as the minnows swirled around her feet.

The trail continues 4.2 more miles to Trail Crest, but we were satisfied with what would be our 8-mile round-trip trek to Mirror Lake, and headed back down-slope. We arrived at our car dog-tired, but replete.


Dog's Life: Travel
Tracking Down Dog Fun
In Illinois & Indiana

Midwestern folks are often friendly (even in the big cities!) and love to talk about dogs. Don’t hesitate to ask people where they like to take their pups. With their help, you’ll discover new places to visit and make new friends on the way.

In Chicago. Start your day with a walk through Grant Park, located downtown and nicknamed Chicago’s “Front Lawn” for its lovely lakeside view. If it’s hot and humid, circle around famous Buckingham Fountain and enjoy its cool, refreshing mist.

For off-leash fun, head to Grant Park’s Bark Park. The 18,000-square-foot area is fully fenced and runs alongside Lake Michigan for more fantastic views; you must purchase a $5 permit and show proof of vaccinations in order to use this public dog park.

After all that running around, you’ll both want to cool off. Follow the Lakefront Trail, which offers 18 miles of paved pathways along the lake, to the Montrose Harbor Dog Beach. There your dog can frolic on the sand or splash in the fresh water off leash while you dip your feet. (This area also requires a $5 permit and proof of vaccinations in advance.)

Next up, take your dog through the Riverwalk Gateway, a walking history museum and public art gallery. A lighted tunnel features narration on Chicago’s history and scenic panels of the city and Chicago River. If you need a snack, grab a seat at nearby Crane’s, a French bistro where dogs may sit at outdoor tables and have a much-need drink of water.

Want to explore the city even farther, but too tired to walk? Both Antique Coach & Carriage Company and Step in Time Carriages offer a variety of dog-friendly tours, including Lincoln Park, the Loop and the “Miracle Mile.”

If you’re visiting on a rainy day, take your pup to Chicago’s Of Mutts and Men, an indoor, off-leash dog park that boasts room to run and socialize, plus pool tables, chess boards, TV and free coffee for the people. Day pass is $3/dog.

In Batavia, Ill. Prefer some room to roam? Head to the 6,800-acre campus of particle physics laboratory FermiLab, located 45 miles from Chicago in the western suburb of Batavia, Ill. Your dog can romp across 35 unfenced acres of restored prairie, then cool off in the ponds. Shade trees and restrooms are available if you plan to stay awhile.

In Porter, Ind. For the pup who loves car rides, take a short day trip around the southern tip of Lake Michigan to the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. Leashed dogs are welcome to explore the sandy dunes and nature center and hike the trails. The campground even offers a special dog-walk area.