Alexandria, Virginia – Historically Pet Friendly

From the Alexandria Convention & Visitors Assn ( For’s Travel Guide for Alexandria click here.

Wagging tales are a common sight in Alexandria, a city that can arguably lay claim to being among the most “dog friendly” in America. The picturesque Virginia town on the banks of the Potomac, just five miles from our nation’s capital, is canine conscientious in numerous ways: Nearly every shop in the quaint Old Town and Del Ray historic districts welcomes pooches into the store with their owners, and some encourage the four-legged shopping companions by handing out doggy treats; canine cuisine is specially prepared at the Barkley Square Gourmet Dog Bakery and Boutique (in Del Ray), and there’s a wide assortment of treats at the gourmet dog biscuit emporium, Chateaux Animaux (in Old Town); The Potomac Riverboat Company offers a Canine Cruise 40-minute tour of Alexandria’s seaport on Thursdays, May through August; and, the whimsical Hotel Monaco on King Street is well known for its “Doggy Happy Hour” – this now world-famous event is hosted every Tuesday and Thursday from 5 to 8 p.m. in the hotel’s courtyard, where complimentary gourmet doggie snacks are served with plenty of fresh water bowls for canine friends (while humans choose from a menu of delicious regional American cuisine) — The Monaco even has its own Director of Pet Relations, “Charlie” (a Bichon), and during the holidays there are visits by “Santa Paws.” Alexandria is also home to the Olde Towne School for Dogs, fondly referred to as the “Harvard for hounds.” Because the city has widespread “pooch pride” it boasts a number of off-leash parks and dog run areas, and it also maintains great curb appeal — streets are tidy and neat to keep Alexandria welcoming to all visitors.

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