Dogs are the ultimate faithful companions, and when venturing out to discover new places, it's reassuring to find destinations where our furry friends are welcome. Ithaca and Tompkins County in New York are known for being very dog-friendly, making this area a must-visit for pet owners. With this in mind, we've crafted a detailed guide to the best pet-friendly spots in Ithaca, perfect for locals and visitors alike. Explore with your furry friend and make unforgettable memories together!

Explore Downtown Ithaca with Your Pet

Ithaca Commons

Downtown Ithaca Commons, or simply “The Commons,” is a bustling district with plenty of shops, restaurants, and bars where you and your leashed furry companion are welcome. 

If you’re looking for the perfect souvenir to take home, stop by Sunny Days of Ithaca. The shop specializes in crafts and gifts from New York artisans, including photography, local music, postcards, maple syrup, and custom gift baskets. Or grab your next favorite read at Odyssey Book Store. Brought the whole family with you? Alphabet Soup is sure to delight children of all ages with its wide variety of toys and games. 

Dewitt Mall, one of the many historic buildings in the downtown area, is home to numerous small locally-owned shops including the famous Moosewood restaurant, which offers dog-friendly covered outdoor seating. Visitors will find four dog waste bag stations along the pedestrian walkway, for a more convenient and enjoyable stroll.

A Taste of Aurora St. 

Ithaca is a food lover's paradise, but one street stands out amongst the rest–Aurora St. Hailed by some as the city’s food mecca, the district boasts a number of pet-friendly restaurants and bars including Red’s Place, whose eclectic menu includes shareable plates, gluten-free options, along with hearty lunches such as crab cakes, lamb burgers, and Cuban sandwiches. 

Other downtown restaurants to check out with outdoor seating: 

Grab a Drink with Fido

Raise a paw to a perfect evening out with your furry companion! Ithaca’s many pet-friendly watering holes add an extra layer of fun to your social outings. From cozy neighborhood pubs to trendy rooftop bars, there's no shortage of spots where you and your four-legged friend can unwind together.

If an ice-cold beer is what you’re craving, look no further than Liquid State Brewing or Personal Best Brewing. Both breweries offer outdoor seating for you and your pet, and craft beers that will delight the palate.

Wine enthusiasts will be happy to know that family-owned Cellar d'Or and Six Mile Creek Winery and Vineyard both allow leashed dogs, as do most Cayuga Lake Wine Trail member wineries.

In the mood for a small bite or cider flight? Stop by South Hill Cider for delicious options and gorgeous views overlooking the city.


The “Ruff” Outdoors

Embrace the natural beauty of Ithaca, with your furry friend by your side! Nestled in the heart of the Finger Lakes region, this charming city offers a plethora of outdoor adventures that are just as enjoyable for your pet as they are for you. All four Ithaca-area NY state parks allows dogs on a leash.

A repurposed railroad area, the South Hill Recreation Way provides opportunities for running, bicycling, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and of course dog-walking. Along this trail you will also see art murals. Leash up your four-legged friend to explore these beautiful trails, and discover the many creek crossings and small gorges along the way.

Explore the Cayuga Waterfront Trail with your pup by your side. Cass Park is a direct connection to this trail and features plenty of open fields and even an enclosed dog park.

Other trails to explore include the East Ithaca Recreation Way and Black Diamond Trail.


Animal-Friendly Things to Do Near Ithaca

If you enjoy the calming ways of a small town, visit Trumansburg or Dryden! These small towns boast amazing restaurants, shops, artist studios, and plenty more.

Bring your pup with you to the Trumansburg Farmers Market, nestled in the beautiful Village Park. Or cool off with a frozen treat at Trimmer's Ice Cream.

Just outside Dryden on your way into Ithaca, you will find Hopshire Farm and Brewery. Hopshire is a family-owned establishment that boasts its vast outdoor areas and its “green” indoor space.

Pet-Friendly Hotels In and Near Ithaca, NY

When traveling with pets, often visitors struggle finding accommodations that allow them. Luckily for you, there are several hotels and campgrounds that are pet-friendly throughout Ithaca including:

  • Grayhaven Motel: This quaint motel offers affordable and pet-friendly accommodations. Some rooms even have kitchens and wood-paneled walls, giving you a cozy place to relax with your pet after a long day of exploring Ithaca.

  • Ithaca by Firelight Camps: If you're looking for a more unique and rustic experience, consider staying at Firelight Camps. This campground offers a variety of pet-friendly accommodations, including canvas tents, cabins, and Airstreams. Firelight Camps is also a great place to connect with nature and enjoy all that Ithaca has to offer outdoors.

  • La Tourelle Hotel & Spa: If you're looking for a luxurious and pet-friendly place to stay, look no further than La Tourelle Hotel & Spa. This upscale hotel offers a variety of amenities, including a farm-to-table bistro, a spa, and a pet-friendly policy. Your furry friend will be treated like royalty at La Tourelle!

  • Canopy by Hilton Ithaca Downtown: This modern hotel is located in the heart of downtown Ithaca. It features pet-friendly rooms, a rooftop bar, and a fitness center.