The list of where you can hang out with your dog on a day off – or even a day on – is getting longer all the time. There’s even an app for it: Flopster, which brings the UAE’s pet-loving community together, tells everyone where dogs and people can hang out together and has some great images of dogs having a great time across the emirates.
Of course there are golden rules to follow when it comes to taking your dog out in Dubai (or anywhere, really): keep them on a leash at all times, clean up after them and ensure they stay calm and quiet.
If your dog is not calm and obedient in public, work on those skills first before venturing out. Supervised dog parks are good places to do this and many have dog trainers who can offer additional assistance if required.
Once your dog is ready to socialize, check out this list of dog-friendly places you can go to in Dubai:
Restaurants and cafes in Dubai
Jumeirah Lake Tower’s Mexican street food joint Maiz Tacos is dog-friendly in Cluster C.
Bounty Beets is the latest cafe to announce that they are dog-friendly. The Le Méridien Mina Seyahi Instagram hot spot is now allowing dogs to join their owners in the outside area of Bounty Beets, and servers will even fetch a bowl of water to quench their thirst as the temperatures rise.
The Riva Beach Club held its first Doggo Movie Night in February; check their Instagram for more.
Good Burger, based in JLT Cluster C, is also dog-friendly.
Just Vegan Jumeirah is a new addition, providing doggie bowls for water and encouraging owners to bring their dog’s favorite foods from home. Marketing manager Betcy Thomas says: “We are so proud of all our furry visitors that have joined the family and food revolution.”
Kave in Al Serkal Avenue is not only a dog-friendly “upcycling café,” it also hosts workshops and actively encourages visitors to be more considerate of their impact on the planet. Follow on Instagram and Facebook.
The Back Door at the Movenpick Hotel Jumeirah Beach welcomes dogs on its outdoor terrace.
Vibe Cafe in Al Wasl welcomes dogs to their outdoor area. Follow on instagram.
Moto Rauch & Staub is one of Dubai’s perfect spots for some low-key entertainment: in addition to coffee and food, it has a barbershop, live music, weekend bbqs and motorcycle markets. It’s also incredibly pet-friendly — pets are allowed indoors too. Many of Moto’s regulars tend to be massive dog lovers, and are also very friendly towards cats.
Restaurants and cafes in Abu Dhabi
Offside Sports Lounge at Jumeirah at Saadiyat Resort is so dog-friendly it even offers a menu of treats just for your dog to snack on.
Nolu’s, the Abu Dhabi original healthy eatery – with an Afghani influence – allows dogs in it’s outdoor area at Al Bandar.
Dogs have been spotted kicking back with their owners in the outdoor areas at the Zayed Sports City pub The Sportsman’s Arms.
Jim’s Kitchen Table in Masdar City allows dogs in the outdoor area.
Dogs are welcome at the eating areas by some — definitely not all — of the city’s most popular food trucks. One of those is Park House in Reem Central Park and the other is SALT, the original food truck in Um Al Emarat Park.
Dubai’s dog-friendly outdoors
Bark Park, Dubai’s first outdoor dog park, is a desert facility on a traditional Emirati farm in Al Awir. It holds weekly Kids and Canines family days and regular saluki and desert dog runs. Annual memberships are available.
JLT has many dog-friendly cafes along its waterfront where you can stop for a refreshment and bite to eat while walking your dog.
Al Qudra Lakes allows dogs on leashes and you can stop en route at the Last Exit food truck park for some sustenance.
Sustainable City has a few dog-friendly restaurants and cafes, including Maria Bonita, Tuk Tuk and Spill the Bean, and there is an outdoor dog park within the community.
The Greens is another dog-friendly residential area with several cafes and restaurants, including Social Company at Zabeel House.
Town Square has an unsupervised, fully enclosed dog park with grass and gravel, agility equipment and lots of areas to sniff.
Hotels and clubs
V Hotel Dubai, Curio Collection by Hilton, is pet friendly and allows pets to check in with their owners, however pets are not allowed in the restaurants.
Dog-friendly activities in Dubai and Abu Dhabi
Pilates: The Animal Agency and Phoenix Rising hold regular Puppy Pilates classes for owners and their canines. The classes are suitable for smaller, well behaved dogs and are held in a variety of indoor and outdoor venues across the city. The Animal Agency also hosts mind and body classes, such as meditation and fitness, for pets and their owners. Follow The Animal Agency on Instagram and Facebook for details of upcoming sessions.
In Abu Dhabi during the winter season, Breath Yoga’s teachers helm classes at Saadiyat Island’s Pets Corner,
Saturdays from 5 to 6pm.
Kayaking: Take your dog kayaking at Hatta Dam with Hatta Kayak. Bring a doggy life jacket though, just in case.
Bowling: Refine your dog’s obedience, agility and impulse control with bowling lessons at Fetch Dubai. The sessions cost Dh100 per dog, per class and are held on Monday nights. Once the dogs have completed a session or two, they are welcome to join the league nights.
Amanda Tomlinson is an Australian journalist who has lived in the UAE for almost 11 years. She is still finding her feet in her new role as a mother to a 1-year-old boy, but believes that every misadventure is an opportunity for growth. When Amanda is not singing and dancing around the house with her son, she can be found working out with him, traveling the world with him and trying hard to get some work done.