What Makes A City Pet-Friendly?

northern michigan

Those of you who travel with pets are often on the lookout for pet-friendly cities, but what features exactly make a place more accommodating to your animals than others? It comes down to cities that have the most places that allow your pet to join you in three critical areas: hotels, restaurants, and parks/hiking trails. That combination of locations gives your pet a place to stay, join you on your most frequent traveling activity, and somewhere they can enjoy the best parts of a new city. The key is finding out what hotels and restaurants are pet friendly plus locating suitable outdoor areas as well.

Hotels

The number of pet friendly hotels – the kind that let you room with your dog or cat – is varying in many major cities around the world. Some are increasing the number of rooms available to pet owners while others are seeing a decreasing trend. Go Pet Friendly has an excellent pet-travel accommodation search engine for the United States and Canada while Bring Fido can help you expand your search to worldwide destinations.

Additionally, don’t forget to ask if the hotel has a weight limit for your dog or any breed restrictions.

Restaurants

glass of red wineEating out with your dog gives you more time to spend with them outside of a hotel room or RV – provided you can find a place that allows pets. Aforementioned Go Pet Friendly and Bring Fido both have pet-friendly-restaurant searches, as does Dog Friendly (U.S. and Canada only). Keep in mind to check for any information regarding the extent of how pet-friendly an establishment is. Showing up to a restaurant in Chicago in the middle of winter only to find out pets are only allowed outside would be disappointing to say the least.

Parks, Hiking Trails, Outdoor Monuments

Of course your pets aren’t really concerned about the restaurants you visit or the hotels you stay at (so long as they’re invited) but can really let their excitement and energy out at various parks and outdoor areas. Most of the information about pet friendly parks is local, so a quick Google search should turn up the results you’re looking for about a given city. Pet Friendly Travel also has a list of the best U.S. National Parks for dogs and Yelp is a good place to find pet friendly hiking trails.

When it comes to outdoor monuments that are pet friendly, there aren’t many good search options. Typically major tourist attractions (indoor and out) in the U.S., Canada, and Europe will have information on whether pets are admitted and to what extent. For global information, TripAdvisor has a good deal of reviews on pet friendly (or not) tourist attractions.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Paul Durante August 9, 2017 at 16:30

Hmmm, this is pretty interesting. I have know about pet-friendly hotels, but pet-friendly restaurants? My first time. Well, it’s nice that they treat your pets nicely and allow them to accompany you, but if they don’t, it’s understandable. Anyway, I will share this with my golf game who is a dad of 3 doggies and who wants to bring them everywhere with him. Thank you for posting!

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Anil Polat August 9, 2017 at 20:31

It’s very popular in some countries and cities and definitely a growing trend. Thanks for the comment!

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