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15 Dog Friendly Restaurant Chains: Take Your Pup Out For a Lunch

Written by: Dogster Team

Last Updated on July 22, 2024 by Dogster Team

corgi dog in the restaurant

15 Dog Friendly Restaurant Chains: Take Your Pup Out For a Lunch

Eating out with your dog can be a ton of fun. It is a way to get out of the house and help socialize your dog. But which restaurants are dog friendly? Most restaurants that have outdoor patios will allow dogs to remain with you as long as they remain outside. In fact, there are numerous dog friendly restaurant chains that will be more than happy to welcome you and your pup. Many of these restaurants even have special treats and menus specifically for your furry friend. These are 15 dog friendly restaurant chains available in the United States for you to check out.

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The 15 Dog-Friendly Restaurant Chains

1. Lazy Dog Restaurant

Options for Dogs: Yes

Lazy Dog Restaurant is a chain designed with dogs in mind. The story goes that the founders wanted to create an upscale, serious establishment called Rocky Mountain Cafe but during their initial planning, they decided to pivot and go with something more casual and family friendly. The result was Lazy Dog Restaurant. All Lazy Dog Restaurants allow dogs on their patios. They also have special offerings for dogs, including a rice plate that includes unseasoned beef and plain rice. This meal is not only tasty, but it is also designed to be healthy for dogs. Next time you visit a Lazy Dog Restaurant near you be sure to bring your pup and order something for them off the menu.


2. Starbucks

Options for Dogs: Yes

Starbucks has a reputation for being friendly and open to all sorts of people. These coffee spots are located all over the world, and in some places, they are located on nearly every street corner. Starbucks locations with outdoor seating are more than happy to accommodate you and your dog. They even have a famous Puppuccino. The Puppuccino is a small espresso cup filled with whipped cream. You can also simply order a cup of whipped cream. If you let them know that it is for a dog, the whipped cream is usually on the house. The only thing that could make Starbucks better is a trip there with your dog to enjoy your favorite coffee beverage.


3. In-N-Out Burger

Options for Dogs: Yes

In-N-Out Burger is an iconic American restaurant that is famous for its burgers. In-N-Out Burger is also highly dog friendly. Any location with outdoor seating is accommodating for dogs. They even have multiple dog-friendly menu items. If you order a Pup Patty, your dog can get a plain, unseasoned burger patty that they will find tasty. You can also order your dog a Flying Dutchman, which is two patties sandwiched together with two slices of cheese in the middle. (You should watch your dog’s portions so that they do not ingest too much fat while eating at In-N-Out.) So next time you pass by In-N-Out, consider bringing your dog and trying out some of their dog-friendly fare.


4. Shake Shack

Options for Dogs: Yes

Any Shake Shack that has an outdoor seating area will be happy to accommodate your dog. Many Shake Shack locations even have special dog items on the menu for your furry friend. The most famous is the Bag-o-Bones, which is a doggy bag filled with five specially crafted dog treats. While you are enjoying a great meal or a tasty milkshake, your dog can dig into their own meal. Some locations also feature the Pooch-ini which is a dessert item safe for dogs. However, the menu states that due to the high levels of sugar, the Pooch-ini might not be suitable for small dogs so be wary of that.


5. Dairy Queen

Options for Dogs: Yes

Dairy Queen is one of the most dog friendly chains in the US. Dairy Queens often include ample outdoor seating where dogs are allowed to hang out. They also include Pup Cups which are small cups of vanilla soft serve that most managers will provide to dogs for free. Be sure to watch your dog’s ice cream intake because giving them too much sugar can upset their stomach and harm their digestive system.


6. Sonic

Options for Dogs: Yes

Sonic is the perfect restaurant for dogs because they don’t feature any indoor seating. All of the seating at Sonic is outside which means that dogs are always allowed. It can also be fun to park and eat with your dog in the car. Most Sonic locations have special dog treats available. Some managers keep regular dog treats on hand for furry patrons, while others will offer small amounts of vanilla soft serve for dogs. Since Sonic does not have any indoor dining, any Sonic location near you should be able to accommodate your dog, making it a great place to keep in mind next time you are out and about with your puppy.


7. Sprinkles Cupcakes

Options for Dogs: Yes

Sprinkles Cupcakes is an establishment specializing in specialty cupcakes. If you like large and sugary cupcakes, you will easily fall in love with Sprinkles. Sprinkles also offers special treats for dogs. Their adorable pupcake is a special cupcake made with a yogurt frosting that is designed to be safe and delicious for dogs. These treats will make your dog feel welcome, and they are super affordable. You might need to bring two people to Sprinkles if you plan on going with your dog, as dogs are only allowed outside. You usually have to order at the counter inside, meaning someone will have to stay outside with the dog. That is something to keep in mind before making the trip.


8. Johnny Rockets

Options for Dogs: Yes

Johnny Rockets are very dog friendly establishments. Any Johnny Rockets that has an outdoor patio will allow dogs to dine outside. Many Johnny Rockets also provide dog-friendly food options, such as a doggy burger. Dog burgers are cut up beef patties soaked in water. That might not sound delicious to you, but your dog will love it. Some Johnny Rockets locations are located inside malls or theme parks. Obviously, dogs are not allowed in these indoor and specialty locations. Johnny Rockets offers 1950s diner style eating with great burgers in a variety of locations.


9. Bruster’s Real Ice Cream

Options for Dogs: Yes

Bruster’s Real Ice Cream is a chain of ice cream shops that feature all outdoor seating. This means that dogs are more than welcome to join you at any Bruster’s location. Bruster’s Real Ice Cream also offers complimentary puppy sundaes, which include a small scoop of vanilla ice cream and a small bone-shaped treat. Bruster’s is the perfect spot to enjoy hot summer days or warm autumn evenings. This restaurant combines many of Americans’ favorite things: dogs, ice cream, and a friendly outdoor atmosphere.


10. Culver’s

Options for Dogs: Yes

Culver’s is a fast-food eatery based in Wisconsin known for its frozen custard and delicious burgers. Culver’s locations have spread all over the country, and there is a good chance there is one near you. You are more than welcome to bring your dog to the outdoor seating areas at any Culver’s. Many dogs will even receive a treat if they dine on the patio or go through the drive through. Dog treats from Culver’s often include a tasty treat and a small scoop of their famous vanilla custard. Just don’t give your dog any chocolate custard!


11. Outback Steakhouse

Options for Dogs: No

If you are looking for a traditional sit-down restaurant that allows dogs, you should consider your local Outback Steakhouse. Most Outback locations that feature an outdoor seating area will allow your dog to dine with you. Outback does not provide special menu items for dogs, but there are not many dogs that will turn their nose up at little pieces of fat or gristle from your own plate. Avoid letting your dog have any of the famous Bloomin’ Onions because onions are toxic to dogs. Outback’s dog policy is set by each individual manager, so you should call ahead to make sure that your local location allows dogs.


12. Applebee’s

Options for Dogs: No

Applebee’s is a great establishment that caters to clientele of all kinds. Whether you want a cheap appetizer as a snack, a full-blown dinner, or a few cheap drinks with friends, Applebee’s is a great place to kick back and relax. Many Applebee’s locations often contain outdoor seating areas and any location that has a patio will be more than happy to let you and your dog sit down and dig in. While Applebee’s does not have a special dog menu, they have a variety of different foods that are safe for your dog to share with you if you are feeling generous.


13. Panera Bread

Options for Dogs: No

Panera Bread is a great place to dine with your dog. Many Panera locations include an outdoor patio where dogs are allowed to hang out. Panera also features a variety of simple breads that make great treats for dogs. Whether you go through the drive-thru or dine in on the patio, Panera has many great options for you and your dog to enjoy. Not all Panera Bread locations have outdoor seating or drive-thrus, so you should check your local location before you go.


14. Olive Garden

Options for Dogs: No

Many Olive Garden locations include outdoor seating. If your local Olive Garden includes outdoor seating, you should be able to bring your dog. Some restaurant goers have reported that individual managers have had issues with dogs on the porch in certain locations, so you should call ahead before bringing your dog. If your local Olive Garden has a dog-friendly patio you will be able to stuff your face with breadsticks and salad while also spending time with your dog. Not many people will turn down the chance to dine on some of the best fast casual Italian food available while also hanging out with their dogs.


15. Ford’s Garage

Options for Dogs: No

Ford’s Garage is a chain restaurant that has partnered with Ford Motor Company to deliver atmosphere in spades. Each restaurant has a plethora of unique Ford-themed decor along with a phenomenal menu. Most Ford’s Garage restaurants have expansive outdoor seating areas. However, whether dogs are allowed on the porch is up to the manager’s discretion. While most people have reported excellent experiences at Ford’s Garage while dining with their dog, it is a good idea to check with your local location before rolling up.

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Dog Restaurant Etiquette

Whenever you bring your dog to a restaurant, you need to keep a few things in mind. First, you should always keep your dog on a leash. This is often the rule for particular establishments, but it’s also good etiquette. Second, you want to keep your dog close by. A good rule is to keep your dog under your table or right next to you. You don’t want your dog bothering other patrons. Lastly, you want to ensure that your dog is well-behaved and under firm voice commands. If your dog cannot come when called or stop when they are doing something they shouldn’t, you probably should keep them at home until they are able to listen. You don’t want your dog bothering other people and not being under control.

a Corgi dog on a leash with owner in a cafe
Image by: Masarik, Shutterstock

Dog Friendly? It Never Hurts to Ask

If you aren’t sure if a restaurant is dog friendly, you can always call and ask. The people manning the server’s stand will be more than happy to tell you whether your dog is welcome. This can be helpful for local establishments or places that don’t look dog friendly at first glance. You might be surprised by which restaurants are truly dog friendly (and which might not be). If you are ever unsure about whether a restaurant is dog friendly, just give them a call to find out directly.

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Conclusion

These are 15 dog-friendly restaurant chains. Each of these restaurants has a large footprint with locations all over the country. There is a good chance that you have one of these establishments nearby. Dog-friendly restaurants are a great way to get out with your dog and grab a bite. Remember, if you are ever uncomfortable or unsure about going to a restaurant with your dog, call and ask about their policies. Also, remember that dogs are never allowed inside the restaurant and must always remain outside on the patio or porch.


Featured Image Credit: Masarik, Shutterstock

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