Best Places to Take Your Dog in the Summer

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If you have a dog who loves running around in the fresh air—and what dog doesn’t?—then he probably welcomes summer with open paws every year. You and your four-legged friend have plenty of options for outings when the temperatures start to warm up, and they extend beyond the obvious ones like the dog park. If you’re looking for spots to have fun and cool off with your pooch this summer, look no further than our guide on the best spots to take him in the upcoming months:

  • A body of water. The wind in his fur, the sun on his forelegs; there’s nothing more exciting for a dog than getting out onto the lake or another body of water. If you have a friend with a boat, ask if you can bring your pup along for a ride. You should also check online to see if your local park offers pet-friendly boat rentals. Even a trip out on a canoe could work for a docile dog.
  • A campsite. Outdoorsy dogs will yip at the thought of a hike in the woods, so an overnight camping trip should be even more enticing. Find a nearby state park that allows dogs and set up a camping adventure with your pooch. Make sure you pack all of the essentials, including plenty of water, food, and waste disposal bags. Also ensure that your pooch is always properly leashed, even when you’re just hanging out around the campfire. If he’s prone to dashing off after wildlife, you can’t count on his typical obedience out in the wild.
  • A dog-friendly eatery. Especially during the summer, many restaurants welcome dogs to come and lounge on the patio while their owners eat. Pet-friendly eateries usually advertise this fact since it’s a big selling point for customers, so a quick Yelp search for “dog-friendly restaurants” should be enough to turn up a few options. Some staff go as far as to bring out a complimentary treat and bowl of water for your canine so she can eat with you.
  • A pet bakery or ice cream shop. Likewise, some ice cream shops promise complimentary doggy sundaes to four-legged friends. If the shop’s website doesn’t say, ask a staffer when you arrive if he has anything in the way of frozen doggy treats. Some bakeries are actually devoted entirely to pet treats and desserts. Since there will certainly be other pooches at pet bakeries, an outing for a “pupcake” will also be a social experience for your dog.
  • A baseball game. Have you been meaning to make it to one of your nephew’s Little League games? Why not multitask and and bring your pet along for some fresh air. He can enjoy the game and the grass under his feet from the end of his leash while you watch the innings unfold.
  • A dog park. Of course, when all else fails, you can’t really go wrong with a trip to the dog park. Read reviews online before deciding on one near you, since they’ll give insight into the amenities. During the summer, you want to find a dog park with water on-site so you can continuously refill your dog’s bowl. Bonus points if the park actually provides the bowls.