Anyone with a four-legged friend knows the bond between dog and owner is one of life's strongest. From morning cuddles and afternoon walks to road trips and movie nights, days spent next to your pup are better than anything else.
Unfortunately, many places aren't as dog-friendly as we wish them to be. Thankfully, Miami has a bevy of pooch-friendly activities to make up for it. Grab your pup and take advantage of everything from beaches and parks to restaurants, hotels, malls, and workout sessions that welcome four-legged friends of all breeds, shapes, and sizes.
7. Spend the day at Hobie Beach
The best thing to do in Miami is visit one of its many beaches. And at Hobie Beach, you can do just that with your favorite furry friend. This bayside location is known for being one of Miami's favorite dog-friendly beaches. Lie on the sand, go for a walk, or take a swim, because the water is shallow enough for even the smallest of pups.
6. Take a walk at Amelia Earhart Bark Park
Rain or shine, taking Fluffy for a walk is something dog owners and their sidekicks do multiple times per day. Spice up one of those outings with a stroll through Amelia Earhart Bark Park. The five-acre space is completely fenced-in and offers a separate section for smaller dogs. Or venture beyond the dog-only area through more than 500 acres of lush greenery. Bark Park admission is always free, and general park admission is free weekdays and $7 on weekends and holidays.
5. Grab a bite at a Matthew Kuscher-owned restaurant
Lokal in Coconut Grove, Kush in Wynwood, and the newly opened Spillover are the progeny of Matthew Kuscher, a local restaurateur and avid dog lover. His eateries offer water stations, occasional menu specials, and happy-hour events for pups. At Lokal, you can find dog-friendly dishes such as Marmaduke’s meatloaf and Yeyo’s chicken and rice, along with Bowser Beer, a nonalcoholic brew from Tampa made specially for dogs. All three restaurants offer outdoor seating, perfect for you and your furry friend.
4. Work out at Margaret Pace Park
The first Saturday of each month at Margaret Pace Park marks Downward With Your Dog, a free outing for two- and four-legged friends incorporating yoga, running, and outdoor activities. The event, aimed at fostering a deeper connection between you and your canine, begins at 9 a.m. with a 15-minute jog, followed by a 45-minute yoga session.
3. Have a spa day at Dogtown
It's no wonder why this Coconut Grove shop was named New Times' Best Dog Groomer 2016: Dogtown is affordable; uses organic shampoos and all-natural, chemical-free treatments; and offers sedative-free teeth cleaning. A session starts at $35 per pooch, which includes a cut, a bath, ear cleaning, nail clipping, and even an anal-gland expression. As you stroll through the Grove (and possibly snag a quick brunch at GreenStreet), your pup will enjoy relaxing in a cozy dog bed or playing in a wide-open, fenced-in space.
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2. Go shopping at Bal Harbour Shops or the Shops at Merrick Park
Everyone needs a shopping buddy, and four-legged friends are among the best. They're agreeable and fun, and make the best day-to-day companions. Bal Harbour Shops in Bal Harbour and the Shops at Merrick Park in Coral Gables are dog-friendly outdoor malls, meaning Fifi is free to roam the grounds as long as she's on a leash, preferably one with bling.
1. Stay at a pet-friendly hotel
Everyone needs an escape from reality sometimes, even our animal friends. Grab your doggy and book a stay at the Epic Hotel or the Surfcomber, which accommodate pets at no extra cost. Take it one step further at the Mandarin Oriental or the Loews, where canines are treated to amenities such as walks, turndown service, and dog-friendly menus.