If there’s anything Southern Californians love as much as being outdoors and enjoying the famously near-perfect weather, it’s doing it all with their dogs! There are so many dog-friendly things to do in and around Los Angeles, and we’d like to share some that we’ve enjoyed ourselves.
Los Angeles – and Southern California in general – is known for its casual and laid back vibe, so it makes sense that it’s one of the most dog-friendly areas as well. Be it city streets, hills or beaches, you’ll be hard-pressed to not see a pup with their human just about anywhere you look. But you already know this, because you’re here searching for places to tag along with your own pup, right? Cool, then let’s jump right into it!
Dog Beaches In And Around Los Angeles
A little over 30 miles south of Los Angeles, along the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH), is probably the most well-known dog beach in SoCal. Huntington Dog Beach lies between Seapoint Ave. and 21st Street, and is an ample, off-leash stretch of sand where you and your furry friend can run, get wet, and go crazy like no one’s watching. Or, if you’re the more laid back type, you can also just grab a spot to kick back, catch the sea breeze, and pupple-watch. That’s cool, too.
Hot Tip: A day at the beach usually results in a hefty appetite, and we’d like to recommend this perfect SoCal spot that we usually hit after the beach – Sancho’s Tacos It’s just a couple of miles south on PCH from the dog beach. Just across the street from the ocean, you can enjoy the view and their freakin’ awesome food while kicking back on their pet-friendly patio.
Hot Tip #2: If you’re looking to stay the night out in “Surf City USA,” here’s a great resource for pet-friendly hotels with oceanfront views.
Long Beach is a beautiful city within Los Angeles County and has plenty of its own mojo to offer. One of its hidden gems is Rosie’s Dog Beach. Located on Ocean Blvd. between Granada and Roycroft Avenues, there is free street parking or a metered lot. The dog beach is 4 acres worth of sand for you and your pup to rage freely.
Dog-Friendly Hiking In Los Angeles
L.A. has no shortage of hiking trails within its many hills. Most are pet-friendly and have just a few basic restrictions, such as leash laws. We recommend researching the specific area or trails you might plan to visit to be sure you’re in compliance, but here are a few of our favorites.
Runyon Canyon is one of the city’s most popular hikes. Greater Runyon Canyon Park is 160 miles of meandering trails in total, but the common Runyon hike is only between 1 and 4 miles. The entrance to Runyon Canyon Dog Park is at the top of N. Fuller Ave. in Hollywood, north of Franklin Ave. Be sure to observe signs when you enter the foot of the trail here, as there are both on and off-leash areas throughout. Parking is very difficult in this neighborhood, but you can start your hike instead from the opposite side of the hill, at the entrance off of Mulholland Drive. There is a small parking lot here, but bring your patience and be sure to read any posted signs. Whichever end you start at, you’ll see spectacular views, and even a few horses and goats if you pass a certain house along the trail.
Hiking To The Hollywood Sign With Your Dog
The Hollywood Sign is about as iconic as it gets in this town. If you and your pup are ambitious and physically able, the payoff will be unforgettable. This is a long hike, at around 6 miles total, but the views from both in front of, and especially behind the Hollywood Sign, are literally what postcards are made of. Bring plenty of water and dress comfortably, as you’ll be getting a workout. Check out our post for The Best Way To Get The Best View Of The Hollywood Sign here, and watch our 40 Questions Challenge vlog where we take you on our hike to the sign and show you the spectacular views!
Alternatively, the Mount Hollywood Trail is much less impactful and only 3 miles total, but also with some of the best views of the city as well as a great view of the Hollywood sign. You’ll find vistas from San Gabriel to the sea, and come out of it with a little more energy to spare.
Laurel Canyon Dog Park is the first officially established dog park in the city of Los Angeles. Located at 8260 Mulholland Drive in Studio City, it boats three acres of off-leash heaven for your pupper to party it up. There’s a separate area for small and timid dogs, and the park also has a shaded structure, portable restrooms, tables, benches, and an enclosed, animal-free, children’s play area adjacent to the small/timid dogs area.
You don’t hear much talk about waterfalls in L.A., which probably why this next suggestion flys under the radar. Escondido Falls is a hidden gem in Malibu that will make you forget you’re anywhere near a city. When flowing strong (most likely early in the year) it’s one of SoCal’s finest waterfalls. It’s got a lower tier that’s easier to get to at around 50 feet, and the upper tier is around 150 feet tall and absolutely STUNNING! The hike through Escondido Canyon Park is just under 4 miles round trip (from PCH) and worth every step. It’s a bit steep, so make sure your pup can handle it. And who knows, maybe he/she will get a little doggie bath up there!
The trails of Westridge-Canyonback Wilderness Park don’t just offer you and your pup incredible views of downtown L.A. and the ocean, but the park sometimes also provides mutt mitts along some of the trails for paw-protection! The park can be accessed either from the West L.A. side, at the end of Westridge Road, or from the San Fernando Valley side in Encino, at San Vicente Mountain Park.
All this wilderness-y stuff is making us and our two mutts pretty thirsty. Let’s check out some city stuff…
Dog-Friendly Things To Do In The City
If city activities are more your vibe, there’s plenty to do and see right inside The Grove, in the heart of L.A. You’ll find plenty of reasonably priced parking in the structure along with hours of strolling, window shopping, and people watching. As for food and drink, you and pup have loads of options. Restaurant patios are dog-friendly, and The Farmers Market provides loads more options in a more casual walkup setting. Our favorite spot is the Dog Bakery! This super fun shop is full of fresh-baked, healthy, and cute doggie treats. From cookies to buns to whatever else they might concoct, your pup won’t know what to sniff first!
The Morrison was voted “Top Pet-Friendly Restaurant In L.A.” by the L.A. Times. With locations in Atwater Village and Burbank (plus an O.C. location in Huntington Beach), it’s known for its signature crafted burgers and cocktails, large beer and whiskey selection, and their patio dining offers a dog menu! “Where’s the Beef,” “Cock-a-Doodle-Do,” and the “Frankenweinie” are all served in cute doggie dishes with paw & bone designs. And if you’re like us and don’t feed your pups human food, no worries! You can still enjoy food, drinks, and the patio atmosphere with your pup by your side.
Abbot Kinney Blvd. In Venice
Abbot Kinney in Venice is mega dog-friendly! This boho chic-vibed, mile-long road near Venice Beach is lined with boutiques, restaurants, and galleries. They feature one-of-a-kind local goods as well as internationally recognized brands. Just about every establishment more than welcomes dogs, and your pup won’t have to walk more than a few feet for their next drink of water. There is tons of cute stuff (and dogs) to check out, while you enjoy the sea breeze, sun, and whatever else you might decide to pick up along the way.
Beverly Gardens Park In Beverly Hills
Beverly Gardens Park is one of the most photographed spots in the city. It’s an approximately two-mile linear park featuring the world famous, forty-foot long Beverly Hills sign. The sign is illuminated and has a water feature along with a variety of flora that sets off the surrounding garden area. The park has a fountain on either end – the Wilshire Electric and the Doheny – and also features a cactus garden, a rose garden, arbors, and a decomposed granite jogging and walking path.
We saved this one for last because it combines 3 of our favorite things; coffee, dogs, and a good cause. Muddy Paw Coffee supports local animal shelters and their slogan is “have a cup, save a pup!” Both of our pups are rescue dogs, so we’re all about this. They’ve got 2 locations; Silver Lake and Eagle Rock. Both have private patios, and the Eagle Rock spot has a dog park, too! You can also buy some coffee, tea, or other cool stuff from their online store to help support the local, independent charities they contribute to nationwide.
We hope we’ve given you some cool and fun ideas here to have a great hang with your best friend. If there’s anything you know about that we haven’t included, please let us know in the comments. We’re always looking for new ideas ourselves!
More Los Angeles
Looking for more hikes, things to do, and places to stay with your dog in Los Angeles? We got you: