Pet-Friendly Hangouts in Raleigh: Best Dog Parks, Restaurants, Trails, Supply Stores & More!

Looking to spend quality time with your furry companion in Raleigh? The City of Oaks is currently ranked #8 for most pet-friendly cities according to a report by WalletHub, so if you’re looking for places to venture to with your pets – you won’t find much more pet-friendly than Raleigh, NC.

Man and a lady walking a Greenway trail with their dog.
Trails are popular with pets

From scenic parks and pet-friendly cafes to welcoming hotels and breweries, Raleigh offers plenty of places for you and your four-legged friend to explore, enjoy, and create lasting memories together.

We are recent pet owners ourselves, two cats, and while most of this article is centered around dogs, we have lots of friends in Raleigh with dogs and know this city well.

So, if you live in Raleigh like us, or you’re thinking of visiting Raleigh with your dog, this guide is for you. We’re sharing dog parks, the most pet-friendly restaurants, breweries, bars, shopping malls, as well as tips for places to stay, buy treats, eat, drink, shop, and more.

So, leash up your pup or grab your feline friend, because Raleigh is calling! We’ve also recorded a podcast episode about pet friendly Raleigh. You can listen at the bottom of the post.

Things to Do in Raleigh With Dogs

Go Walking With Your Dog

Lady walking two dogs on a greenway trail.
Endless trails to explore!

Raleigh is overflowing with nature. After all, it is called the City of Oaks, so of course the #1 thing to do in Raleigh with your dog is to go on a hike. Note that most Raleigh trails require you to keep your dog on a 6-foot leash

There are hiking trails to suit any fitness and energy level, from easy paved loop trails to long-distance hikes. Some of our favorite hiking trails in Raleigh that you can do with your pooch are:

  • Lake Johnson Loop Trail. This is a relatively easy, 3-mile loop around the Eastern side of the lake, and fully paved. It’s dog-friendly, but you should watch out for cyclists and keep your pooch on a leash. Alternatively, take them on the 2-mile West Loop which cuts into the forest and is natural surface.
  • Sal’s Branch Trail in William B. Umstead State Park. There are lots of trails in this park to explore, but Sal’s Branch is a nice and easy one. It’s a 2.8-mile loop trail through the forest, with a lake view.
  • Company Mill Trail in William B. Umstead State Park. This is a longer, 5.8-mile trail through the forest and is a bit more challenging. If you have a dog with lots of energy, this is a good one to do, though they need to be kept on a leash.
  • Shelley Lake Trail. This is another paved loop trail that’s approximately 2-miles long. It hugs the shores of Shelley Lake.
Woman walking along a nature trail in the woods
Company Mill Trail, Umstead
  • Hemlock Bluffs Nature Preserve. This is a small nature reserve in Cary with 2.9 miles of trails through forest, ridges, and bluffs. It’s usually quieter than the other trails on this list and would be a better trail for shy dogs.
  • The American Tobacco Trail. This trail follows the old CSX railroad for more than 26 miles in total and is a popular place to take your pooch for a run. The path is 10 feet wide, allowing plenty of space for bikers, hikers, rollerbladers, and more to use its pathway. This trail is not only scenic but it’s also historic. 
  • Crank Arm Brewing Social Walk: on Mondays you can bring your well behaved and leashed pooch for a social dog walk. No organized routes, just you and your four-legged friend.

Visit the North Carolina Museum of Art

3 large rings as an outdoor art installation.
Ann & Jim Goodnight Museum Park

Is your pet an art connoisseur? Well, they can be, because the North Carolina Museum of Art allows you to visit its spacious 164-acre park with pets!

While the indoor galleries of the cultural haven are just for two-legged visitors and service dogs and miniature horses – it warmly welcomes furry friends to explore alongside their human companions on the outside at the Ann & Jim Goodnight Museum Park, an easy 1.6-mile loop.

Outdoor art installation of a mirror.
Ann & Jim Goodnight Museum Park

And that’s ok, as the grounds are by far the most exciting place for pets. It’s full of captivating sculptures and serene walking paths that you can both enjoy. Be sure to visit in the Spring for the Art in Bloom festival!

Play at Dorothea Dix Park

People having a picnic on a grass field
So much space at Dix Park

Dorthea Dix Park is the largest urban park in Raleigh and boasts huge lawns backed by the downtown Raleigh skyline. Sadly, dogs need to be kept on a leash in the park unless they are in the dog park, but that doesn’t matter as the dog park is huge!

The dog park at Dix Park is located opposite the Sunflower Field parking lot and has a water station available for you and them. It’s one of the most popular dog parks in Raleigh though, so do make sure your pooch is happy to run around with other dogs before you visit.

Have a Pint & Play at West Street Dog

Have a pint of beer or a glass of wine while your dog runs around in the outdoor doggie park at West Street Dog. It’s fun for you and your pooch!

Get Pampered at Woofinwaggle

If your dog is in need of grooming and pampering, then take them to Woofinwaggle for a fresh cut and a spa treatment. LOcated in North Raleigh, they offer everything from mud baths to teeth cleaning!

Best Dog Parks in Raleigh

Dog park with a fence around it
Dorothea Dix dog park

When your pooch wants to blow off steam and run around off the leash, these are the best dog parks in Raleigh to take them to.

  • Dix Dog Park: Umstead Drive. This is the largest dog park with a huge field to run around in and a water fountain.
  • Carolina Pines Dog Park: 2305 Lake Wheeler Road. Open daily from dawn to dusk, this spacious park offers a secure and inviting environment for dogs to socialize and play. It features separate areas for small and large dogs, ensuring a safe experience for pets of all sizes.
  • Millbrook Exchange Dog Park: Spring Forest Road, this park provides ample space for dogs to roam and exercise freely. With well-maintained grounds and convenient amenities, such as waste disposal stations and shaded seating areas, it’s an ideal spot for dog owners to unwind while their furry companion’s frolic.
  • Oakwood Dog Park: 910 Brookside Drive, this park boasts lush greenery and designated off-leash areas. Its tranquil setting and well-marked trails offer a serene retreat for dogs and their owners seeking a peaceful outdoor escape.
  • Buffaloe Road Dog Park: 5908 Buffaloe Road. This dog park is known for its well-maintained trails and scenic surroundings, offering a picturesque setting for dog owners to enjoy leisurely walks with their furry companions.
  • North Hills Dog Park: 200-242 St Albans Drive. Not a huge park and gets muddy after a rain storm, but it’s one of the few places in North Hills where dogs can run around.
  • Jaycee Park: 2405 Wade Avenue. Like North Hills, it’s a no-frills dog park and has one large area for dogs to run around in. It has a shaded area and a few tennis balls to play fetch with.
  • See all city of Raleigh dog parks.

Dog-Friendly Businesses in Raleigh

A shopping village with a grass area, tress, and red umbrellas.
Lafayette Village

One of the reasons why Raleigh is named one of the best cities for dogs is that many, if not most, of the businesses in Raleigh allow dogs to visit alongside their human companions. The following places allow dogs to enter their premises:

  • Lafayette Village: 8450 Honeycutt Road. Most shops at this shopping mall allow dogs and there’s a green space outside for them to use as a bathroom.
  • Smoky Hollow: 421 N. Harrington Street. This is another shopping center with many dog-friendly establishments. 
  • Village District: 2034 Cameron Street. A shopping complex with doggy stations and water bowls dotted around the facility. Most shops here allow dogs to enter.
  • Boxcar Bar & Arcade: 621 Foster St, Durham. A fun place to spend an afternoon playing old-school arcade games with your dog.
  • Great Outdoor Provision Company: Located at the Village District, 2017 Cameron Street. A great place to shop for kayaks and outdoor supplies with your pooch.
  • Cause for Paws Thrift Shop: 1634 Sth Saunders Street. A thrift store where purchases go towards animal charities.
  • Cheshire Cat Antique Gallery: 2050 Clark Avenue. If you’re brave enough to shop for antiques with your dog, bring them along!

Dog-Friendly Bars, Restaurants & Breweries in Raleigh

When it comes to eating and drinking in Raleigh, there are so many places you can enjoy with your dogs! In fact, most breweries in Raleigh that have an outdoor space are dog-friendly! 

Restaurants, Cafes & Eateries

People dining at an outdoor patio.
Patio at Gringo A Go Go
  • The Avenue: 3 Glenwood Avenue. This is a very dog-friendly establishment with indoor and outdoor areas for them. They regularly host adoption events.
  • Flying Biscuit Cafe: 2016 Clark Ave. Dogs are allowed in the outdoor seating area only.
  • Flying Saucer: 328 W. Morgan Street. Dogs are allowed in the outdoor seating area.
  • Gringo A Go Go: 100 N Person Street. A Mexican restaurant with outdoor seating.
  • Mojoe’s Burger Joint: 620 Glenwood Avenue. A casual burger joint with a huge patio, perfect for pups!
  • Morgan Street Food Hall: 411 W Morgan Street. A food hall with a large outdoor seating area that dogs can enjoy.
  • The Morning Times: 10 E Hargett Street. A locals favorite coffee house with outdoor seating.
People sitting at tables and chairs outside a coffee shop enjoying breakfast
The Morning Times
  • Plates Neighborhood Kitchen: 301 Glenwood Avenue. A great place to grab brunch in Raleigh, though dogs are only allowed in the outdoor seating area.
  • Relish: 5625 Creedmoor Road. Dogs are allowed in the outdoor seating area only.
  • Salt + Lime Cabo Grill: 6006 Falls of Neuse Road. Dogs are allowed in the outdoor seating area only.
  • The Station: 701 N. Person Street. Dogs are allowed in the outdoor seating area only.
  • Transfer Co. Food Hall: 500 E Davie Street. A huge space nestled inside a historic garage. There are plenty of food options to choose from and a huge patio where you can dine with your dogs.
  • Wilson’s Eatery: 1053 E. Whitaker Mill Road. Dogs are allowed inside and outside this dog-friendly restaurant.


People sitting outside in a beer garden drinking beer.
Lynwood Brewing
  • Crank Arm Brewing Company: 319 W. Davie Street. Dogs are welcome to sit inside or outside here.
  • Brier Creek Beer Garden: 8521 Brier Creek Parkway. They have a separate menu for dogs and a huge patio where dogs can relax.
  • Clouds Brewing Taproom: 1233 Front Street. A tap room with two sites in Raleigh, but the Front Street site has a huge outdoor patio where dogs can relax.
  • Compass Rose Brewery: 3201 Northside Drive. A dog-friendly establishment where dogs are allowed inside and out. 
  • East Bower Cider Company: 2020 Progress Ct. Dogs are welcome to sit inside or outside with their owners here.
  • Funguys Brewing: 2408 Paula Street. A craft beer brewery that allows dogs on a leash.
  • House of Hops: 6909 Glenwood Avenue. Dogs are welcome to sit inside or outside, and there are also food trucks to get snacks from.
  • Lynnwood Brewing Concern: 1053 E. Whitaker Mill Road. Dogs are welcome to sit inside or outside.
Group of people outside a brewery drinking beer
Raleigh brewing
  • Mordecai Beverage Company: 2425 Crabtree Boulevard. Features a large patio for people to sit on with their dogs.
  • Nickelpoint Brewing Co: 506 Pershing Road. A craft brewery that has a large seating area and offers dog treats.
  • Raleigh Beer Garden: 614 Glenwood Avenue. Has an outdoor area where dogs are welcome, and they have a pup menu.
  • Raleigh Brewing: 3709 Neil Street. Dogs are welcome to sit inside or outside.
  • Tap Yard Raleigh: 1610 Automotive Way. Dogs are welcome to sit inside or outside.
  • Trophy Brewing: 827 W. Morgan Street. Dogs are welcome but only on their outdoor patio.
  • Vault Craft Beer: 518 W. South Street. Has a large, covered patio where you can sit with your dog.
  • Village Draft House: 428 Daniels Street. Has a large patio where dogs are welcome.
  • Wye Hill: 201 S. Boylan Avenue. Has a large, dog-friendly patio.


people sitting at tables in front of a brewery
Whiskey Kitchen
  • Dogwood Bar & Eatery: Located at 610 Glenwood Ave. A dog-friendly bar with indoor and outdoor seating and craft cocktails.
  • The Hippo: Located on 123 E Martin Street. A quaint, cute bar that allows dogs.
  • Hunky Dory: Located on 111 Seaboard Avenue. A record store and bar combined. What better way to spend an evening than listening to vinyl with your pet?
  • Longleaf Lounge: Located on 300 N Dawson Street. A hotel with a bar that also allows pets.
  • My Way Tavern: Located at 522 St. Marys Street. This is a lively sports bar where you and your pup can watch a game or sit out on the patio. 
  • Raleigh Times Bar: Located on 14 E. Hargett Street. Dogs are allowed in the outdoor seating area.
  • Whiskey Kitchen: Located at 201 W. Martin Street. A bar and restaurant where dogs are allowed in the outdoor seating area.

Where to Find Treats, Supplies & Toys

Unleashed, the dog & cat store

Outside entrance to a pet supplies store called Unleashed.
Unleashed has several locations

Unleashed is a huge marketplace for pet treats that has been serving Raleigh since 2007. It started at the NC State Fairgrounds Marketplace and now has stores across the entire Triangle region. 

Hause of Dogs 

Hause of Dogs is a dog-focused treat shop selling puppy ice creams and baked goods. It’s a great place to meet other dog owners and treat your pooch.

Pet Supplies Plus

Pet Supplies Plus is a shop you may have heard of since it’s a chain, but each shop has its own franchise so you shouldn’t dismiss it if you love supporting local businesses. This is a great place to pick up toys, treats, and other essential pet items.

Phydeaux Pet Supply

Phydeaux Pet Supply is another pet store that has everything your pet could want or need. They often have regular deals on their website, so be sure to check it out to see what’s good value.

Pet Mania

Pet Mania was the first pet store to open in Raleigh and opened its doors in February 1988. It’s a great place to find dog food and treats if you run out, plus they do home delivery in the Raleigh area.

Pet Daycare Services

If you’re in Raleigh for a day or a weekend with your pet but need some time away from them for a little bit, it can be hard leaving them alone in an Airbnb where they’re not familiar with the home or their surroundings.

Fortunately, there are some excellent pet-sitting services and daycare centers for dogs where you can put your dog for a day and feel comfortable knowing they are looked after and cared for while you’re busy exploring.

Dog Gone Happy

Dog Gone Happy is one of the top daycare centers for dogs in Raleigh and is owned and operated by veterinary professionals, so you know your pooch is in good hands.

They have a huge 10,000 sq feet, climate-controlled space where your dog can run around and play. They also have separate areas for dogs of different sizes, so no need to worry about your chihuahua being squished by a Great Dane!

They provide toys, and relaxing areas, and have trained staff around all the time. They have both indoor and outdoor places for them to play, and best of all, no cages!

Pup’s Day Out

For basic boarding or daycare for your dogs, Pup’s Day Out is a highly rated establishment. They are committed to giving all dogs love and attention and have a huge space where your dog can play with other dogs. 

Suite Paws Pet Resort & Spa

Pool surrounded by a fence at a pet resort.
Image credit:

If your fur baby is in need of some pampering, then Suite Paws Pet Resort and Spa is the place to send them. They have a doggie daycare center, as well as an overnight boarding service for dogs and cats.

This Raleigh pet resort offers doggie grooming, and they also have a pool for dogs who love swimming. They can run around in their outdoor yard with their new furry friends, as well as be played with by a team of passionate staff. Suite Paws Pet Resort & Spa was the Winner of Indy’s Best of the Triangle in 2023!

Where To Stay in Raleigh With Pets

Finding pet-friendly accommodation in Raleigh NC doesn’t need to be a challenge! The good news is many pet-friendly hotels, motels, and apartment rentals allow animals. Here are some of our favorites:

Aloft Raleigh

Two chairs looking at a BellTower.
Across from NC State University

If you’re looking for a hotel that offers the homely comforts of home, then Aloft Raleigh is a top choice. 

It’s located near NC State University, where there are lots of green spaces and parks for your pooch to do their business on, as well as having lots of indoor space for them to walk around in.

You are only allowed to bring one pet with you, and there is a fee of $75 per stay for up to 3 nights. Any additional nights are $15 per night. Pets can weigh no more than 40.0lbs.

Hilton Raleigh North Hills

The Hilton in North Hills is a 3* hotel with basic but comfortable rooms and is only a few miles out of downtown in the bustling North Hills neighborhood.

Pets are allowed for a $75 per night fee, and they mustn’t weigh more than 75 lbs. You can also only book a 1st-floor room, so be sure to book in advance to ensure you don’t miss out.

Hampton Inn & Suites Raleigh Midtown

The Hampton Inn & Suites is another mid-range hotel that allows pets for a $75.00 fee. If you stay four nights though, it only costs $125.00, saving you $175! You can bring a cat or dog only.

Dog Laws & Regulations in Raleigh

Before you pack up your furry friends and head off, here are some important things to know about Raleigh with pets:

  • You cannot tether your dog for more than 3 hours in a 24-hour period. This includes tying their leash to a pole or chain outside a shop. See more about tethering laws here.
  • If you need to tether your dog, the leash needs to be a minimum of 10 feet and weigh less than 10% of your dog’s body weight.
  • Puppies need to be on a leash.
  • All dogs and cats need to be on a leash within city limits, except for dog parks.
  • You need to make sure your dog has adequate food, water, and shelter, so when booking a place to stay, ensure they have a place indoors to stay. It cannot be under stairs, in cardboard boxes, or in outside buildings such as sheds. It’s illegal to keep animals outside in North Carolina.
  • Dogs, cats, and ferrets must be vaccinated against rabies.
  • All poop needs to be scooped. See poop laws.

Adoption Centers in Raleigh

Podcast on Pet-Friendly Raleigh

We recorded a podcast where we discussed all of the above points, plus shared more stories and insights from our own personal journey of adopting our kittens. Listen to our podcasts here.

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