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10 Most Dog-Friendly Cities in the U.S. (2024 Guide)

Written by: Jessica Kim

Last Updated on July 2, 2024 by Dogster Team

owner with dog strolling and walking at the park

10 Most Dog-Friendly Cities in the U.S. (2024 Guide)

The United States is a dog-loving country. With more than 66% of US households owning at least one pet, it’s no surprise that cities are becoming more and more dog-friendly. Dog parks and dog-friendly restaurants are becoming more common, and it’s getting easier to find travel destinations that both you and your dog will enjoy.

If you’re interested in visiting and exploring new cities with your dog, consider planning a visit to a dog-friendly city. We’ve created a list of some of the most dog-friendly cities in the US to inspire your next travel plans.

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How Are Dog-Friendly Cities Classified?

Cities are categorized as dog-friendly based on several factors. First, dog-friendly cities have wide accessibility to dog amenities and resources, including dog parks, pet stores, and veterinary care. We’ve also considered the number of pet-friendly hotels and dog-friendly restaurants.

Some cities are also known to be easier for pet owners to live in because of laws and policies set in place to protect pet owners. For example, these cities may be located in states that don’t have breed-specific legislation. Dog-friendly cities also usually have more housing options that allow pets and don’t collect pet rent.

The 10 Dog-Friendly Cities in the US

1. Portland, Oregon

Dogs playing near the Hawthorne Bridge Portland Oregon USA
Image Credit: randy andy, Shutterstock

Portland is known for being one of the most dog-friendly cities in the US, and it’s an excellent place for dogs to live in or visit. It has one of the highest number of dog parks per 100,000 residents and has many restaurants that welcome dogs, with some offering menus for dogs.1

Portland also has more housing options available for dog owners than many other cities. About 63% of apartments allow dogs, and only half have pet fees or charge pet rent.

2. Austin, Texas

Dog playing with a ball at Zilker Park in Austin Texas.
Image Credit: Michael Wight, Shutterstock

Austin is an eccentric and unique city that’s worth visiting with your dog. It has warm temperatures all year, so you can plan a trip with your dog at any time. Along with its many pet-friendly hotels, you’ll find many local pet boutiques and dog-friendly cafes and restaurants.

You can walk along several different walking and hiking trails and visit Zilker Park. This park has 350 acres of land and has the largest off-leash dog park in the city. If it’s a particularly hot day, make sure to visit Onion Creek District Park to let your dog swim and cool off.

3. Denver, Colorado

City skyline of Denver Colorado and the city park lake
Image Credit: Nick Fox, Shutterstock

Denver is an ideal city for dogs that love spending time in the great outdoors. It has many dog-friendly hiking trails with beautiful and scenic views, and you can find several camping grounds that welcome dogs.

When you’re in the city, you’ll have access to numerous dog-friendly restaurants and dog parks. About 90% of residents are within a 10-minute walk away from a park. Your dog will also appreciate visiting Three Dog Bakery for a tasty treat that’s baked from scratch.2

4. San Francisco, California

Dogs playing on the beach in front of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco
Image Credit: Paper Cat, Shutterstock

San Francisco is a dog’s dream. It has a temperate climate year-round, and you and your dog can enjoy many different activities together. Dogs have access to numerous hiking trails, and there are many dog parks for them to explore. A common hotspot for dogs is Golden Gate Park, which has four off-leash dog parks established in different areas of the park. Dogs can also enter certain areas in nature parks, and it’s common to see dogs enjoying a day at the beach.

5. New York City, New York

Woman with two labrador dogs walking in Brooklyn Bridge Park
Image Credit: Dmitrii Sakharov, Shutterstock

New York City is home to dogs of all shapes and sizes, and it’s dog-friendly due to its walkability. 99% of residents are within a 10-minute walk from a park, and you can find a few beaches that allow dogs to run around off-leash. This city has many places that you can explore with your dog, so it’s a great place for adventurous and social dogs to visit.

New York City is also fairly dog-friendly for residents. While only 41% of apartments are pet-friendly, only about 5% of these apartments charge a pet fee. Homeowners insurance companies also can’t refuse or charge higher rates based on a dog’s breed.

6. Seattle, Washington

A couple walking their dog along the West Seattle waterfront park
Image Credit: Edmund Lowe Photography, Shutterstock

Seattle is a city that makes traveling with dogs easy. It has a variety of dog-friendly hotels and lodging options, and you can find many local breweries and restaurants that welcome dogs. Norm’s Eatery & Ale House is one restaurant that allows dogs indoors.

If you have an outdoorsy dog, you can check out several hiking and walking trails in and near the city. Social dogs will enjoy exploring dog-friendly parks, including Green Lake Park and Warren G. Magnuson Park.

7. Nashville, Tennessee

Nashville, Tennessee
Image Credit: Kevin Ruck, Shutterstock

Nashville is most famously known as the Country Music Capital of the World, but it’s also a dog-friendly city. It’s a nice city to visit year-round because of its warm climate. You and your dog can explore many fun attractions and restaurants in the downtown area or walk along the many walking paths and hiking trails. You can also visit Percy Priest Lake, Radnor Lake, and Old Hickory Lake if you’d like to escape the city sounds for some peace and quiet.

8. Phoenix, Arizona

Black Labrador in Phoenix, Arizona
Image Credit: Thomas Trompeter, Shutterstock

Phoenix is a great location for dogs that love spending time outdoors. It’s located near several nature parks that allow dogs on their camping grounds. Just keep in mind that it can get very hot in the summer, so it’s important to be mindful of keeping your dog cool and hydrated.

Dogs have access to several different hiking trails, and there are many restaurants with outdoor patios that allow dogs.

9. Madison, Wisconsin

Madison, Wisconsin
Image Credit: Mihai_Andritoiu, Shutterstock

Madison is a fun weekend city to visit with your dog if you’re looking for a relaxing, low-key vacation. It has plenty of off-leash dog parks, and water-loving dogs will enjoy visiting Madison’s five lakes: Mendota, Monona, Wingra, Waubesa, and Kegonsa.

Madison also has many fun and unique restaurants, cafes, and bars. Many of them also welcome dogs in their outdoor spaces.

10. Chicago, Illinois

A woman walking her dog in front of the Chicago skyline
Image Credit: a-image, Shutterstock

One of the best times to visit Chicago with your dog is in the summer. Once the weather gets warmer, the city has many cafes and restaurants that open their patios and allow dogs to sit with their owners. The beaches will also open, and you and your dog can visit the two dog beaches located along the coastline of Lake Michigan.

You can also find many dog parks and unique pet boutiques located in the various city neighborhoods. It’s also fairly easy to find pet-friendly lodging options.

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Dog-friendly cities can be found in all regions of the US. So, you can visit a nearby city for a quick weekend trip or plan a more elaborate vacation for you and your dog to enjoy. Just make sure to do a little research on lodging options, restaurants, and tourist attractions so that you have updated information on their dog policies. Once you’ve secured your hotel and a few attractions you and your dog can visit together, you’ll be able to go on a fun adventure with your dog and make some cherished memories along the way.

See also:

Featured Image Credit: Ground Picture, Shutterstock

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