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Pet Friendly Des Moines, IA

If you’re joining the influx of young professionals and families relocating to Des Moines,A dog running with a frisbee in its mouth there are many places that will welcome your pet. Discover the dog friendly restaurants, parks and trails for you and your furry friend to enjoy in Iowa’s capitol.  


Almost 30 Des Moines dining establishments welcome dogs. We’ve highlighted a few below to give you an idea of how you can enjoy the city with your pup.

Start the day at Friedrichs Coffee Roasters, a small batch Artesian roaster that creates award-winning coffee. The University Avenue location welcomes well-behaved dogs at their outdoor seating.

Gazali’s is a dog friendly counter-service Mediterranean restaurant in the Drake neighborhood of Des Moines. Enjoy falafel, gyros, Baklava and more outside with your pup at a few select dog friendly patio tables. The owners have been said to greet pets with love and affection and if you’re lucky, may even create a special treat for your pet. Gazali’s gets 5 bones on BringFido.

For dessert with your pooch, head over to Snookies Malt Shop. The local staple serves up sundaes, ice cream, shakes and slushies. This neighborhood favorite is popular with families and dog owners, especially in the summer. They advertise a free puppy ice cream cone, so your best friend can enjoy a cool treat in the heat as well.

Dog Friendly Activities, Parks and Trails

In the warm months, head over to the Downtown Farmers’ Market. This popular Saturday morning event welcomes dogs of all sizes. It hosts around 300 vendors from 50 counties in the state. Enjoy handcrafted baked goods, fresh local produce, and live music with your leashed pet.

Des Moines has three dog parks. Pets should be leashed until they enter the facility and a permit is required to enter all dog parks in Des Moines with a $20 annual fee. You can earn a free permit by becoming a Dog Park Ambassador volunteer. Ewing Dog Park is a fenced in area near downtown Des Moines for pups of all sizes. It is 8.5 acres with 1 acre set aside for pooches under twenty pounds. It’s filled with grass and trees and has a shelter. Riverwalk Park has 4 acres fenced off for dogs with a 5-foot-tall architectural fence. This park has two fenced unleashing areas, picnic tables and dog waste station. And finally, Des Moines’ Reno Memorial Dog Park has a 3.5-acre fenced grass area for dogs to run and play.

The Clive Greenbelt Trail begins in the nearby suburb of Clibe and is very popular for locals looking to take Fido for a walk. It’s a 7.9 mile asphalt and concrete trail that will take you and your pet through parks and lush tree lined greenways. The Gay Lea Wilson Trail is also based in a nearby Des Moines suburb and is popular with those wanting to get outside with their pooch. It’s a 20.9 miles paved trail that connects several towns and natural landscapes.  

Categories: Family Moves: Kids & Pets