If my dog can’t woof there, I’m not going.

Woof woof woof, woofing woofy woofed. Let me translate that for you: your dog wants to go for a walk!

With summer approaching and the weather warming up, it’s the perfect time to include your furry friend in your outdoor activities. And I’m not only talking about dog-friendly parks here; Toronto also boasts some top-notch dog-friendly restaurants, cafes and bars.

Owning a dog has many perks beyond just the love and companionship. Research shows that dogs encourage a more active lifestyle, improve social interaction skills and are even good for your heart health. Dog owners tend to have lower blood pressure levels and improved responses to stress, which are major factors in preventing cardiovascular problems.

If you’re now thinking about getting a dog, consider adopting! Adopting a pet is not only about enhancing your own life and gaining a new friend, but also about giving a second chance and saving a life.

Whether you already have a dog or are planning to get one, let me help you with some planning. We’ve listed a number of amazing dog-friendly spots in Toronto where you and your pup can have a blast. These places are truly the bark of the town for dog lovers.

So, let’s unleash the fun and let your pup have a tail-wagging good time.

Lobster Burger Bar

Located at King Street West and Simcoe Street, Lobster Burger Bar is the ultimate spot for you and your dog. Trust me, it doesn’t get more dog-friendly than this.

Not only you can bring your dog to the patio area, but this place also has a special menu dedicated to dogs. Yes, you read that right! With some pawsome options like beef, turkey and chicken, their puppy menu ensures your dog gets all the balanced nutrients they need while having a howling good time.

While you’re treating your dog, you can indulge in their signature Atlantic lobster or Angus beef. The restaurant prides itself on sourcing seafood from a tight community of Canadian fishermen on the East Coast. Their lobsters are delivered weekly from their plant on the East Coast to maintain quality control. Plus, they offer a great variety of wine and cocktail options to pair with their seafood, though these are just for you – keep them away from your pup.

At Lobster Burger Bar, you’ll enjoy amazing seafood while your dog barks with joy.

Goldstruck Coffee

“Founded by coffee lovers with a goal to show the people of Toronto what high quality coffee tastes,” Goldstruck Coffee is a haven for both coffee lovers and dog owners.

With two cozy locations – one at Richmond Street and York Street and the other in York Village – this coffee shop has earned a spot on blogTO’s list of  Best Coffee Shops.

Beyond their organic, fresh and handcrafted drinks and freshly baked goodies, Goldstruck Coffee is always ready to hand treats for visiting dog parents. While you enjoy your daily dose of caffeine, your dog is having a pawsitive experience with some tasty treats.

They even feature a “Dog lovers” highlight section on Instagram to showcase their furry visitors.

Colonel Samuel Smith Park

Picture of Colonel Samuel Smith Park.
Photo credits: Fernando Bossoes

Looking for a spot to unleash your dog after classes? Look no further than Colonel Samuel Smith Park. Paws down, this is the best on-campus spot.

Conveniently located by the Humber College Lakeshore campus – literally just a five-minute walk – this park offers everything you and your pup need for some outdoor fun. While it’s known for its outdoor skating rink available during the winter, Colonel Samuel Smith Park really comes alive in the warmer months. 

Besides being a popular spot for fishing and birdwatching, this park features an unfenced off-leash area for dogs. Plus, commercial dog walkers are welcome here too, which means your furry friend is sure to make some new buddies and enjoy some outdoor playtime with other pups.

And did I mention how close it is to the Lakeshore campus? Talk about convenience!

Campechano Taquería

This restaurant embraces unique traditions to stay true to Mexican culture and serves fresh tortillas all day long. Campechano Taquería takes immense pride in the process of nixtamalization and sources Heirloom corn from smallholder farmers in Mexico.

While all their locations welcome pets, I highly recommend visiting the Adelaide location. Imagine enjoying delicious tacos and sipping on margaritas while chilling with your puppy. Then, you can simply stroll over to St. Andrew’s Playground dog park, just a few steps away from the restaurant.

It’s a win-win for both you and your pet. Plus, the park is always barking dogs on weekends and weeknights, so your pup will definitely have a blast.

Meet Percy Shulman, Humber’s favourite therapy dog

Now that you’re aware of some of the coolest dog-friendly spots in Toronto, allow me to introduce you to the beloved furry friend you might have spotted around Humber or the University of Guelph-Humber campuses.

With his soft, brown eyes, golden fur and ability to spread love, Percy is hard to miss. He’s not just any dog; he’s a bit of a celebrity, meeting former Toronto mayor John Tory a couple of times. But Percy’s heartwarming presence is mostly seen on regular visits to hospitals, retirement residences and schools.

When he was just one and a half years old, Percy became a certified St. John Ambulance Therapy Dog. His mission? To spread joy, provide comfort and bring smiles wherever he goes.

You’ll often find Percy roaming the Humber campuses, offering students the perfect break between classes and a much-needed dose of canine companionship.

These are some of the woof-derful places that will have your dog barking for more!

If you want to discover more off-leash areas for dogs across the GTA, the City of Toronto has a map available on their website where you can find spots filtered by location. BringFido also has a list of dog-friendly hotels, restaurants, services and activities.

If you are yourself a dog owner or have a favourite spot that you like to bring your puppy along, share with us @shareignite. Who doesn’t love some adorable doggy pictures, right?

Woof woof woof!

Feature image courtesy of Anna Dudkova via Unsplash.

Are you looking for other patio recommendations? Check out five patios you cannot miss this summer!

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