Where a person lives certainly has an effect on people and their families. But have you ever thought about how it’s affecting your dog? The dog-friendliness of a city varies widely and depends on many factors.
Several studies have been done to determine which cities in the United States are the friendliest for dogs. These studies – which were done by SmartAsset, Realtor.com, and WalletHub – took into account factors like the number of dogs parks, the number of pet friendly restaurants, number of pet caretakers in the city, and a variety of other factors to determine the top dog-friendly cities.
But the lists are all a little bit different. What’s a dog owner to do when different cities show up on different lists? Well, we did the dirty work for you! We compared the three studies – and even compared them to this list by Forbes – to determine the ULTIMATE five cities in the United States that are truly the best for dogs, and you of course!
- Las Vegas, Nevada
You might be surprised to see this city on the list. But we’ve actually featured Las Vegas as a top destination for vacationers and their dogs. So why not take the plunge and move there?
Vegas was actually the only city from all three studies that was featured in the top ten. This is because they are one of the highest ranked cities for most dog parks per capita and for most pet businesses per capita. As if that weren’t enough, it hardly rains there! No rain means no wet dog smell. And no wet dog smell means a happy dog owner!
In addition to these great assets, Red Rock Canyon National Park is less than a 30 minute drive from the Vegas strip. Take a break from the night life, and take a hike! With this great balance of outdoor adventure and quality resources, it’s no wonder Las Vegas was featured on every list.
- San Diego, California
San Diego is another city that was featured in every study, but it didn’t make WalletHub’s top ten. But don’t let that turn you off! With its great California weather, multiple beaches, and plenty of hiking spots, this city deserves to be at the top of every dog lover’s list!
In addition to the natural beauty of San Diego, there are also plenty of dog parks for you and your pup to play in. Add to that the seven dog-friendly shopping areas that feature over 1,000 pet-friendly stores, and you and your pup will never be bored!
The tricky thing about San Diego is its walkability. But even though it ranks somewhere in the middle for this, there are more than 1,000 registered dog-walkers in the San Diego area. So if you don’t have time to do the walking, another dog lover surely will!
- Scottsdale, Arizona
Scottsdale can be found in the top ten of two of the studies we looked at. The warm weather gives this city a great “outdoor friendliness” ranking. But more than that, pets here are healthy. WalletHub puts Scottsdale in the number one spot for pet health and wellness!
But life isn’t just about doctor’s appointments. You and your dog are going to want to have some fun! Scottsdale boasts plenty of boutique shops for dogs, specifically for smaller dogs. In fact, they are ranked one of the top cities for most pet businesses per capita! Many of these stores feature designer-inspired products for the fashion forward dog.
And after a day of shopping, Scottsdale offers plenty of outdoor dining, including 20 bars where your dog can join you for a drink. You and your dog will be living the high life!
- Tampa, Florida
Another city that’s featured in the top ten of two of our studies, Tampa, FL is a fantastic city for dog lovers who crave the outdoors. With plenty of sunshine to be had, you and your dog can take advantage of their many off-leash dog parks all year round. It’s also a great place to live with your pet if you’re on a budget. WalletHub puts Tampa in the number ten spot for pet owners who don’t want to dish out too much cash.
But some dog owners do like to spoil their pups. Lucky for them, Tampa has plenty to offer in that category. With numerous pet supply shops and boutiques, the dog that craves the good life will be happy in Tampa. And if you’re just shopping for yourself today, you can still bring your dog with you! Many stores in Hyde Park, an upscale, open-air shopping mall, leave water dishes out and supply dog treats for your furry shopping companion. What more could you ask for?
- Fort Collins, Denver & Colorado Springs, Colorado
Because we love our readers, we decided to make the last spot on this list a 3-for-1 deal. Every study we looked at featured a city in Colorado – but each one picked a different city! To us, that meant that most any city in Colorado was going to be dog-friendly. What fun-loving dog could turn down all that outdoor adventure? But let’s take a look at the featured three.
As expected from cities in Colorado, all three locations are highly regarded for their outdoor activities. Fort Collins has extensive hiking trails, four dog parks, an even areas where water-loving dogs can swim. Denver is noted for being fairly cold, but don’t let that stop you from playing outside! And Colorado Springs is ranked the number two city in the United States for “Outdoor Dog Friendliness.”
Denver actually boasts one dog park with a unique set up: separate areas for high energy and low energy dogs. This is ideal for social dogs who are seeking friends at their own pace. And Spring Canyon Dog Park in Fort Collins has four separate areas for dogs of different sizes.
So, did we convince you to move yet? Or perhaps now you’re thinking of taking a vacation to one of these doggy paradises? Let us know in the comments if you’ve ever been to one of these cities. We’d love to hear from you – and your dog!