Don’t leave your very good boy behind when you’re out and about


There are plenty of dog-friendly places in Orlando that both you and your best friend will love. Here are a few of our favorite local dog hangouts ... that are also great for humans.

Go for a ride!

Wekiva Island has everything you need for the perfect day on (or just near) the water: cabanas, crystal-clear springs, cocktails and more. Even better, your dog is welcome to spend the day here with you exploring all the island has to offer. Head over on "Wekiva Wednesdays" to enjoy craft beer from local breweries (1014 Miami Springs Drive, Longwood). Or, if your pooch is even more adventurous, head to the Paddling Center at Shingle Creek for a day on the water paddleboarding, canoeing or kayaking. Cruise through the shady creek and enjoy the outdoors with your best friend. Your dog will appreciate getting to spend the day with you on the winding canals (4266 W. Vine St., Kissimmee).

Parks for the little puppers

Sometimes the big dogs at the dog park play too rough for your little guy. Luckily, there are often separate small dog areas fenced off inside where just the smaller breeds can get together and pal around – both Lake Baldwin Park Dog Park (formerly Fleet Peeples Park) and Paw Park in Sanford have them. And Park of the Americas, near the Orlando Executive Airport, has an extra nice and very large small dog area (you get what we mean there) with a covered gazebo for shade in the summer. Let your mini-pins and Yorkies off the leash to romp around with some puppers their own size.

Do you even dog, bro?

If you're just thinking about adopting a dog – and it goes without saying: Adopt, don't shop – or if you're ready to add to your pack, here's a list of places to meet furry new friends.

Orange County Animal Services

2769 Conroy Road, 407-836-3111,

Since this is the county-operated shelter, it's not just a great place to meet a new doggo – it's also the first place to check if your pet runs away or gets lost.

Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando

2727 Conroy Road, 407-351-7722,

Right across the way from OCAS, you can also check out the large Pet Alliance shelter.

Florida Little Dog Rescue Group

Contact this foster-and-adopt group if you want a pocket-size pooch.

Greyhound Pets of America of Greater Orlando

1260 S. Ronald Reagan Blvd., Longwood, 407-332-4754,

Give a happy home to a retired racing greyhound.

Central Florida Pug Rescue

If you can't get enough of those little flat faces and short little legs, contact this rescue-and-foster group.

Orlando Bully Rescue

Orlando Bullies aims not only to help find homes for abandoned and surrendered pit bulls, but also to help educate on the loyal and loving nature of this misunderstood breed.

Drink and dine with dog

Pup-friendly patios are aplenty in Orlando, but here are just a few of our faves for yappy hour or canine-and-dine. Remember, some people aren't lucky enough to have a dog of their own; this is your chance to share your well-behaved pet with those poor souls.

903 Mills Market, 903 S. Mills Ave., 407-898-4392

Burton's Thornton Park, 801 E. Washington St., 407-412-5140

Dexter's of Thornton Park, 808 E. Washington St., 407-648-2777

The Falcon Bar & Gallery, 819 E. Washington St., 407-423-3060

The Gnarly Barley, 7431 S. Orange Ave., 407-854-4999

The Greek Corner, 1600 N. Orange Ave., 407-228-0303

Jade New Asian Bistro, 2425 Edgewater Drive, 407-422-7968

The Lucky Lure, 1427 N. Orange Ave., 407-250-6949

Roque Pub, 3076 Curry Ford Road, 407-985-3778

The Wine Room, 270 S. Park Ave., Winter Park, 407-696-9463

Wop's Hops Brewing, 419 S. Sanford Ave., Sanford, 407-878-7819