(Updated for 2016 – I’ve been informed Spice Kitchen is no longer dog friendly)
It was a tough job, but someone had to do it. I spent the summer scouring the Cleveland patio scene searching for the best dog-friendly patios. That’s how dedicated I am to you, my fellow Cleveland dog and patio lovers.
I made a list at the start of the summer of some of the patios I’d heard to be the most dog friendly and I ended up making it to pretty much all of the places. I also found a few new ones along the way. It’s definitely an exciting time in the Cleveland dining and drinking scene, and a lot of new dog-friendly places are sprouting up in Cleveland.
Before I get into the patios, I encourage you to read this if you are considering taking your dog out. I’ve heard some bad stories lately and I would hate for Cleveland’s dog-friendly patio scene to get a bad name: http://dogsinthecle.com/dog-friendly-patio-etiquette/
Here are some things I take into consideration to determine what makes a good dog-friendly patio:
1) How much space is there for you and your dog. Will you feel cramped or in other people’s way?
2) How comfortable do I feel hanging out with my dog? Are people, including the staff at the bar/restaurant, welcoming of the dog, or are they annoyed?
3) Do they accommodate the dog as well? Provide water, attention, treats maybe?
Of course it’s not a requirement that they fawn over my dog or give him treats, but it’s a nice bonus (Hunter asked me to add that part).
The List (in no particular order)
11310 Juniper Rd.
This Cleveland Heights favorite has a laid-back patio perfect for hanging out with your dog. The bar allows dogs inside and out, and the inside of the bar opens up to the front and back patios for easy access. The back patio is especially fun for dogs who love to dig in mulch!
1859 W. 25th St.
This bar has a large dog-friendly patio that runs alongside and behind the bar (it also has an outdoor bar where you can get drinks as well). They provide dog bowls and I usually see at least one other dog any time I visit, so this a well known spot to take your dog. I always feel comfortable taking Hunter here. And the really good burgers don’t hurt either.
Clifton Wine Bar
10427 Clifton Ave.
This wine bar is one of my favorite spots in Lakewood. I love their food and their patio is spacious and very welcoming of dogs. I never think twice about bringing my dog here. The staff is always very excited about dog visitors and provides water bowls.
6605 Detroit Ave.
This restaurant is so dog friendly, they host a weekly “Bow Wow Brunch” for people to bring their dogs and enjoy brunch on their patio. Even without catering to dogs with their own brunch, I’d love this patio. It’s one of the prettiest in Cleveland and the patio has a lot of space for you and your dog.
Platform Brewing Company
4125 Lorain Ave.
This is one of my favorite bars in Cleveland, and not just because it’s dog friendly. The beer is good, the atmosphere is laid back and they bring in fun food vendors so you can sample different local Cleveland places. The patio is a great place to hang out with your dog, and there are always at least a few others dogs out there. Last summer they even hosted a dog show, so you know they really love dogs!
12387 Cedar Rd.
This one makes the list mainly because last summer the restaurant did a renovation and built two patios, one specifically designed to allow people to bring their dogs with them. The spacious patio is very welcoming of dogs and it’s definitely worth a stop if you’re an eastsider looking for good dog-friendly patio.
2927 Bridge Ave.
Not only is Heck’s known for their burgers, but they also have a great, casual patio perfect for hanging out with your dog. When I called to ask if they were dog friendly, the woman who answered said, “Yes, we love dogs!” so I felt pretty comfortable that my dog would be welcome here.
2373 Professor Ave.
No dog-friendly list would be complete without mentioning Edison’s. This Tremont bar is probably one of the most well known dog-friendly places in Cleveland. They even have it on their sign. You’re pretty likely to run into at least one dog every time you visit. Dogs are allowed out on the spacious patio, as well as inside the bar.
806 Literary Rd.
This patio might be one of my favorites on the list. I love Barrio and was so excited when I discovered their beautiful Tremont patio is dog friendly (I have been told the Lakewood Barrio patio is NOT dog friendly). There is plenty of room on their patio to hang out with your dog and enjoy some delicious tacos. The staff is also really great with dogs. Hunter’s water bowl was never empty.
1404 W. 29th St.
This new addition to the “Hingetown” (Ohio City) scene has a decent-sized dog-friendly patio. This patio was especially impressive to me for how well the staff treated my dog. Multiple people brought him water and fawned over him. This actually might be Hunter’s favorite patio on the list.
These are a couple of patios I either didn’t get to, or haven’t been yet with my dog, although I’ve heard they are all great dog friendly patios.
2800 Whiskey Island Drive
Felice Urban Cafe
12502 Larchmere Blvd.
1875 Merwin Ave.
What is you and your dog’s favorite patio?