by Dog Friendly KW| UPDATED January 2024
Dog Friendly KW has spent the past few years learning about the countless dog friendly places you can visit with your pup across Waterloo Region. With three cities and four townships sprawling the region, there are endless activities for you and your dog to enjoy.
New for Winter 2024, we’ve created Waterloo Region’s first dedicated pet attraction called Sniffscape! This pop-up enrichment experience for pups takes dogs and their owners through separate rooms to allow dogs to experience structured enrichment activities in a safe and comfortable environment, while engaging all fives senses.
Sniffscape is just one of the great places that welcomes your pet (and their 2-legged family members!) in Waterloo Region. From patios to outdoor adventures – here’s how to spend 36 hours in the Waterloo Region with your dog (or dogs!)
If you’re from out of town, you’ll likely want to get settled in at your dog friendly accommodations. We recommend the Courtyard Marriott in St. Jacobs. They are not only incredibly dog friendly, but are located close to Highway 7/8 with many amenities close by to make your stay incredibly simple.
Once you’ve checked into your hotel you’ll be starving, so head to Uptown Waterloo to Beertown Public House for dinner. Beertown is a local fan favourite because they have a dog friendly patio, a huge line up of incredible craft beers, and a wide variety of options for vegans, vegetarians, gluten free folks and omnivores alike!
If you’ve still got some energy after your dinner, take a stroll in Uptown Waterloo and visit some of the dog friendly shops like Harmony or Words Worth Books. If you’re not much of a shopper, walk over to Waterloo Park to enjoy a stroll around the pond.
Rise and shine! You’ve got a big day ahead of you – feed your dog their breakfast and get ready to head Downtown Kitchener. Start your day at Cafe Pyrus, the original vegetarian and vegan cafe in town for breakfast and coffee. Cafe Pyrus has a great dog friendly patio located on King St right in the heart of downtown. They love when fur-legged visit, and if you ask nicely, they’ll even bring your order out to you since your pup can’t go inside. We highly recommend the breakfast griller!
Once you’re full of delicious eats, you won’t want to miss the Downtown Kitchener Art Walk. This self-guided walk is a collaboration between the Downtown Kitchener BIA and the Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery. Download the digital guide to your phone and get ready to take some pooch-perfect pictures with pieces created by local artists! Be sure to show off your pup using the hashtag #DTKartwalk .
Saturday Afternoon & Evening
If you’re anything like us, all you want after a long walk is a beer! Head up to Elmira to visit Rural Roots Brewing Company which is dog friendly inside and out! Pair your pint with a tasty snack off their small (but delicious) snack menu. They also sell popcorn by donation with proceeds going to Woolwich Community Services.
By now, you and your pooch are probably due for a rest. Head back to the Courtyard to get some rest and freshen up for a stroll around the Village of St. Jacobs and dinner!
Since your hotel is so perfectly situated near the Village of St. Jacobs, head into the village for a walk through the most dog friendly village in Waterloo Region. St. Jacobs is full of dog friendly options, and many businesses have signs on the door inviting your pooch in. You’ll want to make sure you stop by Living Fresh (our favourite) and Spoil The Dog Bakery (soon to be your dog’s favourite). Be sure to check business hours to avoid disappointment.
Once you have worked up an appetite, head for dinner at no other than The Village Biergarten. The Biergarten has a beautiful patio that is completely dog friendly. Their menu includes options for anyone with dietary restrictions and they serve up amazing drinks. By now, you and your pooch are wiped! Grab some beers from Block Three Brewing to enjoy from your hotel room before falling into a deep slumber.
Take your time getting up this morning – yesterday was a big day! Once you are ready to start your day, check out of your hotel and head off to scenic Downtown Galt in Cambridge. By now, you are probably well overdue for some caffeine and breakfast. Hang out at the dog friendly patio at Monigram Coffee Roasters and enjoy a light breakfast and a local brew (coffee brew of course).
Now that you are fully caffeinated, it’s time to walk around beautiful downtown Galt. Explore along the river and marvel at the European-esque architecture of this beautiful area of Cambridge.
Fun fact: this area is so picturesque, it’s been used to shoot a number of films and TV series, including The Handmaid’s Tale. Be sure to snap some cute pics of your pooch and tag #GaltLove.
Before you start to make your way home, you won’t want to miss the chance to stop at the Old Galt Bottle Shop – a dog friendly, craft beer bottle shop. Enjoy a brew on their patio or grab some bottles to take home! As you make your way back to the highway, stop by the Sheave Tower in Blair for a short walk to see this local monument – and of course, take more pictures of your pup!
And there you have it! An action packed weekend in Waterloo Region for you and your four-legged best friend! Be sure to tag @dogfriendlykw in all of your posts so we can see you out on your adventures with your pup and don’t forget to check out the Dog Friendly KW Business guide at www.dogfriendlykw.com for more places to visit with your pup!
Mackenzie Drinkwater and Justine Sparling are the humans behind Dog Friendly KW. Friends for almost twenty years, these two love to scout out new places to take their three dogs (Willa, Alydar and Marshall) on adventures.