14 Reasons Aiken is the pet-friendliest town to spend your dog days of summer in

It is no secret that charming Aiken is the best travel location for families with furry ones.  Don’t take it from me, but even Travelocity named Aiken the pet-friendliest city in the Southeast. So, don’t leave Fido behind! Here are fourteen reasons you'll want to bring your pooch with you on your next trip to Aiken! 

1. Dog lovers have a choice of nice pet-friendly hotels to choose from in Aiken. If you're really interested in spoiling your buddy, check out the Willcox's Pet-FriendlyPackage.

2. Join the friendly locals and have a scrumptious breakfast with your dog at New Moon Café where other happy canines start their day. New Moon Café is one of the many fine sidewalk cafés nestled in the heart of downtown Aiken for a cup of joe.

3. When strolling through the scenic downtown, there are  water bowls at every specialty shop set out for the four-legged companions. When your paws and feet need a rest, there are plenty of rocking chairs in the Alley for a rest for you too.

4. Aiken is known for its unique art galleries with equine and pet inspired themes. Own a piece of Aiken’s artwork to take home, have your dog’s portrait painted or get brave to paint your dog  yourself at the Art Nook.

5. You don’t have to own a Poodle, Papillon, or French Bulldog to dine at Pardon My French Café, but it’s the perfect nook to have lunch with your canine on the patio and enjoy the French vibe.

6. This paw friendly town has a variety of pet stores. Surprise your pooch for a shopping day at Bone-I-Fide Bakery or Downtown Dog, where your dog will get a complimentary organic heart-shaped dog cookie. Both stores offer unique finds from adorable raincoats to harnesses and collars to treats and pet food. They make their own treats and bones (the smell will even make you hungry.

7. Shopping locally with your dog is the best kind of retail therapy! Plan your trip during the Dog Days of Summer (July 31-August 6) where all of the participating shops offer sale prices for the humans and local pet treats from Downtown Dog for your pets.

8. Pet parents can get some ice-cream at Cyndi’s Sweet Shoppe while their canines snooze and people watch (and drool over your ice-cream).

9. Shower your dog with affection by taking him or her to Aiken’s most popular dog park. It’s every dog’s dream to be off the leash and in the water and meet new paw friends. Come on right now, and afterwards you can relax with your pooch at Yappy Hour.

10. In the great outdoors, hiking and walking trails makes Aiken the perfect pet destination. Dogs will enjoy exploring the Aiken State Park, Hopelands Gardens and Hitchcock Woods (with over 70 miles worth of trails). It’s sure to be a paw-pleaser!

11. The Alley Taproom is a great place to cool off and enjoy a beer while hanging out with your best friend. Take a “paw”tograph of Fido on the popular floor logo where doggies love to pose. Fido will swear it's better than the Hollywood sign!



12. Enjoy the sights and listen to live music in the city while eating dinner in The Alley. Enjoy a night at Amp The Alley or one of the other festivals going on downtown.

13. On Saturdays, walk your dog to the Aiken County Farmers Market and shop for local produce or pick up some watermelon. The  hard-working farmers will appreciate the company and welcome your furry friend with open arms.

14. Nestled in Aiken for the outdoorsy pup are gems of polo fields, scenic dirt roads, and horse farms. Book a tour at one of farms and meet the horses too.


Aiken is a charming Fido-friendly destination with the great outdoors, an abundance of canine-themed events, and culinary treats where your furry companion can enjoy a relaxing and fun environment. Make plans to visit Aiken during the Dog Days of Summer. Aiken is barking Fido’s name!