Headed toward the beach? If your dogs could talk, they’d express their adoration for Astoria and Warrenton, two nearby burgs ranking high among the Oregon Coast’s four-legged-friendly areas. Parks, beaches, hotels, cafes and even an outdoor market? Woof-woof!
When you pair a pastry chef with a self-taught ice cream whiz, you get Frite & Scoop, a bustling ice cream shop on Astoria’s lovely six-mile-long Riverwalk, which seems custom-built for leashed dogs to accompany their humans. Frite & Scoop sells house-made dog cookies made of pumpkin, oats and peanut butter, donating the proceeds to Clatsop Animal Assistance.
Also on the Riverwalk, dogs are more than welcome on the waterfront patio at Astoria Brewing Company, a paw-pular spot serving craft beer along with chowder, burgers, sandwiches and seafood. No wet-dog stink, though — the patio is only open during dry weather. Other beery options include Fort George Brewery & Public House and Rogue Ales Public House, the latter offering a canine food menu.
Of the nearly 20 dog-friendly restaurants in Astoria, some of the town’s tastiest day-and-night grub-and-grog is found at Astoria Coffeehouse & Bistro, located a block from the Riverwalk. Craving some authentic fish-and-chips? Across from the Columbia River Maritime Museum is Bowpicker, a converted, landlocked fishing boat selling beer-battered albacore — and Fido can help you finish it.
Dogs love to tour the Astoria Sunday Market, which features up to 200 vendors each Sunday from May through mid-October. The market celebrates its 18th season in 2018. Just about everything you can think of can be found at the market, including many other potential pals for your pooch.
Take off your pup’s leash at the fully fenced Warrenton Dog Park in Eben H. Carruthers Memorial Park, which has separate areas for large and small dogs. Waste bags and fresh water are provided, all with a great view of the Columbia River and the Astoria–Megler Bridge.
Time to turn in? There’s never a pet fee at good ol’ Motel 6, but if you seek a little more swank, doggie-up at the classic Astoria Riverwalk Inn or the romantic Cannery Pier Hotel & Spa, which provides a dog-welcoming basket of pet treats along with a comfy dog bed and water dish — and even doggie baggies!
And, of course, we can’t forget the miles of great ocean beaches and the dog paradise that is Fort Stevens State Park, a 4,300-acre piece of living history that offers camping, beach access, lake swimming, trails and a military museum.
Remember, practice good dog-handler etiquette: Keep your dog leashed with a leash no longer than 6 feet; pick up after your dog’s business; and prevent your dog from approaching other dogs or people who don’t want such an encounter. Follow these quick tips, and you’ll get a tail wagging welcome wherever you go.
Story by Michael H. Kew
Photo by Greg Robeson