Secrets of patio dining with the dog

remmy and friend engage in dining out at spokes on broadway
The Phoenix nights are still so nice and cool – why not go out dining with the dog to one of the many, many, many local dog-friendly restaurants?

But, first does your pup have good patio manners?

Does she filch food? Act up for attention? Bark at other dogs? Brie Kuna, behavior specialist at Arizona Animal Welfare League, says the key is to have a dog who knows the basic commands, knows their name, maintains good eye contact with you and stays still when lying on a mat.

That’s all!

Tips on how to enjoy patio dining with the dog

If you think your dog has mastered those techniques, Kuna offers some other great tips about dining out with your dog:

  • Does the dog want to dine out? Sure, you love happy hour. But does your dog really groove on wine glasses clinking, lots of chatter and endless plates of hummus and crudités going by? Some dogs prefer the quiet and some are just flat-out intimated by all that stimulation.
  • Pick your time: Quiet mornings after a nice walk may be the ideal time for you and pooch to hang out and dine al fresco. Happy hour may be just a little too busy for bowser.
  • Do some recon: Walk your dog outside of the restaurant to give her a chance to go potty before getting inside. That also allows her a chance to calm down after the car ride and acclimate to new surroundings.
  • Pick your spot: Choose someplace in the corner where it is easy for you and the dog to have good eye contact. The dog can have her back to the wall to survey the scene. Choosing a spot that keeps your dog out of the way is another great reason for going during off hours.
  • Bring supplies: Pack your dog’s favorite blanket or mat. Not only does it provide a comfy spot on the floor, it also identifies the dog’s space for her. It’s her zone and she can zero in on it. Also bring along some high-quality treats and collapsing water bowl. Lots of dog-friendly restaurants have water bowls but it’s good to be prepared.
  • Pay attention: This can be the hard part but you should pay attention to the dog even though your tablemates are telling hilariously funny stories. To succeed as a dining-out dog, your dog needs to know when she is being good. Go ahead and pay attention to her when she is being quiet and calm, reward her with nice eye contact or a soft word as she just lies at your feet.
  • What about Puppy? Puppies can benefit from socialization – can’t we all? But make sure you are balancing social time with quiet time. Puppies aren’t helped by being overwhelmed. And make sure they are vaccinated before they go out and about.

Dog-friendly restaurants around Phoenix

When Kuna goes out with her dog, Remmy, they head to OHSO, Snooze, Four Peaks or Postino.

Check out these other dog-friendly restaurants.

Gifts for the dog this holiday season

You know you are getting the dog a gift this holiday — a little something extra.

Why not shop local?

The metro Phoenix area is home to a lot of great entrepreneurs who love dogs as much as you do and their products/stores show it!

Plus, when you visit these local stores and vendors, they welcome your dog as well as you!

Doggie Gift Guide

You know you are getting the dog a little something extra this holiday.

Why not shop local?

The metro Phoenix area is home to a lot of great entrepreneurs who love dogs as much as you do and their products/stores show it!

Plus, when you visit these local stores and vendors, they welcome your dog as well as you!



In addition to the links on the slideshow, here are links to the products and stores shown:

Ice Cream for Dogs?

Hey, dogs and their peeps: What’s better on a hot summer night than to go out for ice cream?

We’ve got three great places in metro Phoenix that offer something extra special for the dogs in your life.

dog in car ready to find ice cream in phoenix
But first a warning from the Surgeon General (doggie version): Ice cream can cause trouble for some dogs’ tummies. They can’t tolerate the lactose and just like humans, the sugar is not good for them.

So ice cream should be a rare goodie.

Nonetheless, these three local businesses have whipped up some special frozen treats for our four-legged friends. Take a look:

Disclaimer: The Beagle went with me to all three places. She loved devoured every single item. Beagles are like that – your dog may not love them as much. But I doubt it.

dog enjoying frozen treat hot summer night in tempe

Aloha Yogurt, Tempe

What they have: Talk about going all out. The yogurt shop’s owners have dogs and wanted to create some cool creamy treats for them. Think yogurt with peanut butter or yogurt with bacon and cheese.  Served in a cup.

What we also love: Aloha is in a cute little shopping area where you can easily walk around and let the dog enjoy a post-treat stroll.

dog enjoying frozen treat in central Phoenix

Az Pops, Central Phoenix

What they have: Pup pops! A nutritious combination of sweet potato and oatmeal whipped up into a frozen treat.  Served on a stick

What we also love: AZ Pops’ Pup Pops aren’t dairy based and have all natural ingredients. And you can get something tasty and nutritious for yourself while you are there.

dog enjoying frozen treat glendale kinda ice cream

Papa Ed’s Ice Cream, Glendale

What they have: Frosty Paws! Delicious in a cup – the original dog “ice cream”

What we also love: Papa Ed’s has a large grassy area out front where your dog can just attack the ice cream in a cup. It’s also in the middle of downtown Glendale’s cute antiques area so there is plenty of places to walk to. Bonus: Papa Ed’s helps put on Dog Days of Glendale every year so they are super-dog friendly!

Still not interested in taking the dog for a drive? Worried about the intestinal repercussions of your dog having ice cream? Don’t worry because….

Next week: Three yummy dog treats designed to cool off your dog!

Poolside with Pooch

dog at resort
“It’s hot. What do you want to do?”

“I want to have fun and not spend a ton of money.”

“Hey, let’s find a resort that has a deal and use their AC and swimming pool.’’

“What about the dog?”

Bring the dog with!

A lot of terrific Phoenix area resorts have smokin’ deals this summer and many of these resorts are dog friendly.

To clarify, some resorts say they are dog friendly and they really aren’t: they charge huge fees for your dogs and skimp on the treats. Others, like Firesky and W in Scottsdale, are totally down with dogs and lovingly liberal with their canine goodies.

For a complete rundown of dog-friendly resorts, check out our just updated list for resorts in metro Phoenix and Tucson.

See you poolside, umbrella drinks included!

Movie and a Dog

It’s not your imagination – there are practically no dog-related events in metro Phoenix during these blazingly hot days. Probably because it is not fit for man nor beast out there right now.

But if you are going stir-crazy in the house, there’s always the stalwart Urban Beans Monday Movie Night. The central Phoenix coffeehouse/restaurant is showing “City Island’’ this Monday. Cartoons begin at 7 p.m.; movie starts at 7:30 p.m.

I admit I had to Google “City Island’’ to refresh my memory. It stars Andy Garcia as head of dysfunctional Bronx family who gets shaken up by the arrival of an ex-con. IMDb gives it 7.4 out of 10 rating.

I don’t have to Google Short Leash Hot Dogs which sets up at Urban Beans on Movie Night. Short Leash is yummy-licious and worth dragging yourself out of the house even on the hottest of nights.

Looking for another dog-related movie outing? There’s always the drive-in theater in Glendale. It’s the only left in the Valley and it is currently showing: Brave and The Avengers (love The Avengers!) Technically, dogs are not allowed at the drive-in but that rule is almost never enforced.


A terrific thing about living in Phoenix is that you can take advantage of some deals and sneak away to one of our swanky local resorts for a good price during the summer.

We’re talking $150 for a room that normally goes for $300 during the high season. And it’s not just the room, it’s the amenities like beautiful swimming pools, lush grounds, activities and the tasty drinks with the umbrellas in them.

But what about the dog?

Bring them with.

Happy Dog Phoenix has already done the homework for you; we have a handy-dandy list of pet-friendly resorts

Of course, it is up to you to pick your palatial spot. Are you in the mood for family fun? Spa get-a-way? Golf and tennis – each of them offers a break from your daily grind.

Note of caution: some resorts are dog friendly but what they really mean is that they will gladly take your money to put up with your dog and that is the extent of their hospitality. Others truly seem delighted for there to be a dog in the house. FireSky Resort and W Hotel are two that come to mind.

See you poolside!

Sadie’s Hangout

Already thinking of the weekend and looking for a place with a dog-friendly patio?

Patrick suggests the Salty Senorita if you are out in Peoria. He likes the chicken quesadilla; his dog, Sadie, appreciates the grassy areas.

“Dogs are always welcome during the day, but Friday & Saturday nights it’s more of a bar scene, and they usually will turn you away on nights like that,’’ he says.

It would be hard to turn away Patrick’s canine companion, Sadie,
a sweetie pie who is half Akita and half Statffordshire Terrier.

Like many of us, Patrick wasn’t looking for a dog when Sadie came into his life.  His daughter was fostering for Halo Animal rescue. Sadie was one of three female puppies, covered in ticks, abandoned in an ally. His daughter nursed them back to health and wanted to keep one, even though she was headed to the ASU dorms.  Patrick was adamant he wasn’t going to take care of any dog.

Somehow, Sadie stayed and decidely won Patrick over.

“Before she entered my life, I was never really a dog person. She’s a rescue dog, but the truth is I’m the one that was rescued!,’’ he says.

Patrick, thanks for the tip on the Salty Senorita and the great story about Sadie!

We’re adding the Salty Senorita to our ever-expanding list of dog-friendly places.


OHSO Great

Here’s a great springtime activity with your dog: walk along the canal that cuts through the Arcadia portion of Phoenix, say from 32nd Street north of Camelback and down to the O.H.S.O.  Eatery and nanobrewery, at 49th street and Indian School Road.

They have a great back patio that is super dog friendly, with large water bowls that can’t be tipped over and a bin of dog treats.

Dog paw prints in the restaurant lead you back to the patio if you don’t come in along the canal side.

Nanna, the awfully photogenic Black Lab, loved hanging out at O.H.S.O. on a lovely Sunday evening.

We’re adding O.H.S.O. to our ever-expanding list of dog friendly places in
metro Phoenix

March Madness

If I am reading my March Madness basketball brackets correctly, there’s only one dog team left in the Sweet Sixteen and that’s the Connecticut Huskies.

Last year’s championship was truly a dog fight since it got down to the Huskies (Connecticut) and the Bulldogs (Butler).

Already, we have had to say goodbye to the Gonzaga Bulldogs and the Loyola Greyhounds.

Say, you want to watch some basketball at a sports bar but don’t want to leave the dog behind? Check out these spots:

Surely, we have missed some — let us know!