35 summer pleasures to share with your canine best buddy
by Nicole Sours Larson
10:07 AM, Tuesday, June 28
Now that summer is in full swing, it’s time to kick back, relax and share some special San Diego delights with your urban dog. But where can you go that’s dog-friendly? With the whole city to explore, check out this list for happy canine adventures and activities.

  1. Bring a Frisbee, ball or stick and romp with your dog on everyone’s favorite, Dog Beach in Ocean Beach.  
  2. Follow up with a cleansing splash at the Dog Beach Dog Wash or your favorite neighborhood dog wash or grooming salon.
  3. Take your dog skateboarding along the Embarcadero or your local beachfront boardwalk.
  4. Teach your dog to surf and compete in the next doggy-duo surf competition, even if you have to start your own.
  5. Take in the Sunday afternoon and Monday night organ concerts at the Spreckels Organ Pavilion, or any of the free neighborhood outdoor summer concert series where well-mannered dogs are always welcome.
  6. Bring your pooch for Happy Hour at the dog-friendly Sunset Patio at the San Diego Wine & Culinary Center, where every Wednesday night from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., City Dog co-hosts a “mix and mingle” for dogs and their humans to socialize, quaff wine and dine while their canine companions enjoy doggy activities.
  7. Sling a hammock on your balcony, patio or lawn and curl up with your dog and a good book or catch a few zzzs.
  8. Pack your dog’s favorite water bowl, don your best walking boots and set out to explore the hidden paths and canyons of Balboa Park. Pick up a map of trails at the visitors center or a book detailing the park’s history at the Museum of San Diego History. While you’re in the park, stop to sniff the roses in the formal rose garden and admire the succulents in the well-tended cactus garden, too.
  9. Rent or borrow a kayak for the day and take your dog kayaking in Mission Bay or along the ocean near La Jolla.
  10. Train with your dog to run a half-marathon together.
  11. Take in a baseball game together at the Park in the Park at Petco Park.
  12. Cool down together from the summer heat in the enchanting and dog-friendly Dancing Water Fountain, next to Tin Fish Restaurant at Fifth Avenue and the trolley tracks next to Harbor Drive in the Gaslamp.
  13. Get up early and explore with your dog some of the 27 miles of boardwalk surrounding Mission Bay Park’s sandy bays.
  14. Sail your radio-controlled boat in Mission Bay’s Model Boat Basin, or bring your pooch to watch while others launch their miniature yachts.
  15. Ride the funicular together to the top of the Convention Center block, then race each other to the bottom of the long staircase.
  16. Invite your dog along (leash, basket or backpack preferred) when you take a trial twirl on a self-propelled Segway, available for rent at the Promenade in Pacific Beach and at other locations around the city.
  17. Watch fishermen land their catch at Crystal Pier in Pacific Beach or at the Ocean Beach Pier.
  18. Take a stroll with your furry friend along the North Embarcadero and watch a cruise ship come into port. Look at the city’s dazzling collection of museum ships before touring the latest set of Urban Trees “planted” along the seawalls, courtesy of the Port District’s Public Art Program.
  19. Ride the Coronado Ferry together and share an ice cream (not chocolate) at Ferry Landing.
  20. Bicycle together through the city, with your dog running beside you or riding in a special basket on your bike.
  21. Take in an evening outdoor film together at the Catamaran Hotel, San Diego Museum of Art or other outdoor venue, with your buddy at your feet or in your lap.
  22. Swim together off Fiesta Island or frolic in the ocean, jumping waves.
  23. Linger over the sunset at La Jolla Cove or Sunset Cliffs.
  24. Play catch with your dog at your local leash-free dog park.
  25. Buy your dog a special treat at your favorite doggy bakery.
  26. Bring your dog’s leash and explore a new city neighborhood together.
  27. Rent a sailboat and let your dog teach you to sail in San Diego Bay or Mission Bay.
  28. Go for a run with your dog around Shelter or Harbor islands.
  29. Take your leashed and well-behaved dog shopping at a pet-friendly shopping center, such as Fashion Valley or Otay Lakes, or take your dog along on your daily round of errands.
  30. Go to an evening urban car show together and let your dog absorb all the new smells while you admire all the classic wheels.
  31. Rent or borrow a snazzy chariot and go cruisin’ together to observe and impress the world while sussing out new friends and checking out potential mates.
  32. Bring your pampered pooch (invite your sweetie, too!) along on a tour of the town aboard a horse-drawn carriage ride, leaving from Seaport Village.
  33. Shop for new doggy duds and paraphernalia at your favorite pet boutique and let your dog pick out new toys and treats at your favorite doggy den.
  34. Sit for a joint portrait or caricature at the Embarcadero Gardens near Seaport Village.
  35. Romp and roll in the grass together at Spanish Landing along San Diego Bay or at your favorite park.

When you’re all done, grab a cool drink and a big bowl of water and congratulate yourselves on all the new worlds you’ve discovered and explored!

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