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Best Things to Do in Scottsdale With Dogs (super dog-friendly city)

Best Things to Do in Scottsdale With Dogs (super dog-friendly city)

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Scottsdale is one of the most dog friendly cities to visit in the United States.

Heading out on holidays with your dog isn’t always the easiest thing to do, but if you’re planning a trip to the Phoenix area, Scottsdale is the perfect destination.

On our most recent trip, we enjoyed morning coffee jaunts, scenic strolls, shopping, hiking and happy hour all with our dog, Miley.

With so many things to do in Scottsdale with your dog, you won’t feel limited in where you can visit, what you can see and where you can eat.

Here’s how to plan your pet friendly trip to Scottsdale, Arizona. 

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Old Town Scottsdale 

As the heart of the city, Old Town Scottsdale is a great spot to visit and roam around, and not only are dogs allowed in this area, it’s very dog friendly.

This walkable district is lined with boutique shops, restaurants, cafes, gardens and art work.

Stroll past all the western-themed facades and look for fun photo opps among the cacti and cute buildings.

Small well-behaved dogs are allowed in most shops. 

And there’s plenty of free parking throughout Old Town. 

Recommend spot: The Merchantile of Scottsdale, best described as a real-life Etsy market that’s very dog friendly. 

Dog Friendly Restaurants in Scottsdale – Patios and Breweries

@ Brat Haus
@ Morning Squeeze

While there’s a high concentration of dog friendly patios and breweries in Old Town, you can find them all over Scottsdale.

On our most recent trip, we actually had a hard time finding restaurants patios that weren’t dog friendly.

If you’re anything like Chris and I, some of our favorite parts of a vacation is coming across a patio with a vibe for happy hour that we can share with our pup. 

Recommended spot: Brat Haus – dogs are greeted with homemade treats and there’s even a dog menu that you can order from. 

Here were some of our other favorite patios that are dog friendly in Scottsdale: 

Diego Pops

Loco Patron

Morning Squeeze 


Jojo’s Coffee

PHX Beer Co

Craft 64

The Breakfast Club

The Montauk 

The Original ChopShop


Rehab Burger Therapy 

Note: I don’t recommend Daily Dose Cafe. We tried to visit for breakfast one morning and after several days of visiting so many dog-friendly spots, this place was not, even though they advertise it. Cross this one off your list. 

Canal, Waterfront and Dog Parks

lady walking her dog in an urban park

In the heart of Old Town, the main canal waterfront has plenty of pathways and people watching areas!

It’s surrounded by dog-friendly patios (including the LDV Winery) and is a popular spot to meet others out and about with their dogs. 

Tip – from the main canal waterfront, go for a nice 3 mile walk west along the canal to O.H.S.O Eatery for a fun pet-friendly brewpub atmosphere that also serves up great brunch. 

Chaparral Dog Park has 3 large off leash areas, has plenty of shade, dog water fountains and even fun obstacles like tunnels to play around in. 

Hiking Trails

lady poses with her dog on a rocky trail in front of a large cactus
@ Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve

Miles and miles of hiking trails await you and your dog in the Scottsdale area.

Your options are endless when it comes to choosing a trail, but no matter which hike you choose, you’ll be rewarded with scenic lookouts and expansive views. 

Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve was our favorite spot for a hike with the dog. The main trailhead has washrooms, a covered shaded area and a dog water fountain.

The Gateway Trail was a perfect 2 hour loop to soak up the scenic Sonoran desert scenery, but any of the trails within the more than 3500 acres are a great choice.

Or the Lost Dog Wash trail to the Taliesin West overlook is a neat spot to catch a glimpse of the Frank Lloyd Wright architectural jewel. 

Pinnacle Peak Trail is another popular moderate hike, best known for its massive granite boulders and great views. 

An easy 10 minute adventure is the Hole in the Rock Trail at Papago Park, which is also great for kids. 

Dog Friendly Shopping Areas in Scottsdale

Scottsdale Fashion Square

Dogs are allowed inside the Scottsdale Fashion Square Mall and it’s not limited to small dogs either! On out last trip we saw several large sized poodles.

This mall is one of the most well-known attractions in Scottsdale, boasting high end luxury shopping complete with valet parking but also plenty of mid-range retailers, too.

As long as your dogs are on a leash and well behaved they are welcome.

Note that not all retailers will allow dogs in their stores, but you’re free to walk them around the mall.

Scottsdale Quarter

Sometimes referred to as the Beverly Hills of the desert, this shopping district is very pet friendly.

Throughout the year this outdoor mall partners with the Arizona Humane Society to host fun events for owners and their dogs.

Events like special shopping days during the holidays where your dog can get a photo with the Grinch and enter the ugly dog sweater contest!

After you shop til you drop, plan to grab a bite at the more than half a dozen dog-friendly restaurants on site. 

Desert Ridge Marketplace

Desert Ridge Marketplace is another large shopping district with a mix of big box stores, high end retailers, unique shops and restaurants that surround an outdoor courtyard.

This whole area is very dog friendly, including many of the patios.

There’s free live music on Friday and Saturday nights and it’s often decorated with fun lights and art displays. 

Tip – after shopping, stop in at Barrio Queen (patio is dog-friendly) for great Mexican food. Their location in Old Town is often busy, so this location is easier to get a seat! For something unique, try the nopalitos tacos made with cactus. 

Arizona Diamondbacks Ball Game

During the dog days of summer you can buy tickets to watch the Arizona Diamondbacks Baseball game with your dog!

The stadium partners with PetSmart and provides a special seating area where dogs are allowed and there’s even special concession items for your pooch. Watch the website for more information. 

For more pet friendly things to do in Scottsdale, Experience Scottsdale has put together a list of some favorite dog-friendly spots. 

Are you going to be flying with your dog? Read my guide on the best airline approved pet carriers (including the ones we tested and used).

Pet Friendly Hotels in Scottsdale – Where We Stayed

Hotel Valley Ho

palm trees at sunrise in a pink sky cast a reflection into a pool

Extremely dog friendly – no pet fees and tons of outdoor green space for the dogs.

Location – in the heart of Old Town, 5 to 10 minutes walking distance to anywhere.

Amenities – with a pool that rivals those of Las Vegas day clubs and the onsite ZuZu Bar & Restaurant, you never have to leave the hotel if you don’t want to.

Check prices and availability here.

Sonesta Suites at Gainey Ranch

Perfect for stays of a week or more – the rooms are big with full kitchens and we loved our private patio that felt like a pool cabana.

Location – in north Scottsdale, this hotel is close to the freeways if you’re planning day trips and close to shopping districts and attractions like the OdySea Aquarium, TopGolf and the Talking Stick Resort.

Happy Hour – from 5 to 6 pm there is a complimentary happy hour which includes snacks, beer and wine. Enjoy sitting on the outdoor lounge, fireside overlooking the courtyard with lit up palm trees.

Check prices and availability here.

Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Gainey Ranch

Family friendly – waterslides and a sandy beach are part of the outdoor pool area

Perfect for couples – it’s also a great resort for couples looking for a romantic getaway.

There’s a golf course nearby, a swim-up bar at the adult-only pool, gondola rides on the lake and the onsite Avania Spa (try the 30 minute Himalayan Salt Room for the ultimate detox).

Check prices and availability here.

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