Dog-Friendly Sonoma County Restaurants

Thursday, June 2nd, 2011

Dogs are welcome at Occidental's Howard's Station Cafe

Dogs are welcome at Occidental's Howard's Station Cafe

Do you dogatarian? Here in Wine Country, four-legged friends can get downright gourmet at restaurants that not only welcome dogs, but even have specialized menus for your pup. As the weather turns warmer, outside patios are the perfect spot for a nosh with man’s best friend. Want to share a toast? There are plenty of wineries that welcome dogs as well (including one that has a “Yappy Hour”). Here’s a handy list of dog-friendly spots around Sonoma County.

Howard’s Station Cafe
This Occidental breakfast and lunch institution has a pooch-approved menu that includes ham and eggs, the bow-wow burger, kibbles and gravy and even peanut-butter filled squeak toys. “Customers frequently asked for side dishes for their dogs,” said owner Terry Martin. She recently added the specialized menu of canine-friendly foods for dog-owners who are welcomed on the restaurant’s open-air front porch. “We’re a destination restaurant near the coast, and a lot of people have dogs with them,” she said. After a hiker recently showed up with a thirsty dog companion, the idea gelled and will soon expand to include frozen dog pops. Well-behaved furry companions are served their suppers in special dog bowls next to the owners’ tables. For humans, the restaurant’s specialties include eggs Benedict (with fresh eggs from the Martin’s nearby farm), doughnut milkshakes, and a hearty granola bake with fresh bananas, cream and syrup. 3611 Bohemian Highway Occidental, CA 95465 – (707) 874-2838

Not sure about dogging dining rules? In California, health department laws only permit licensed guide animals inside restaurants. However, pet-friendly restaurant owners can legally allow dogs (and other well-tempered pets) to join their owners in certain outdoor areas. Keep in mind that not everyone will be thrilled to see your drooling darling, so it’s important to be respectful of non-pet owners and make sure you animal is well-groomed and well-mannered. You are ultimately responsible for its behavior and clean-up. Keep your dog out of aisles, closely leashed and out of the path of curious children who may inadvertently poke or upset your pup.

Garden Court Cafe and Bakery
This cozy Glen Ellen eatery also has a specialized menu for doggies that includes it’s signature Bleu Plate Special (eggs, ground beef, garlic and zucchini), egg whites with ground turkey, and a Babaloo Pizza (biscuit crust with catsup, jack cheese and fresh herbs). Dog cookies and water bowls are complimentary. 13647 Arnold Dr., Glen Ellen, 935-1565. Closed Tuesdays.

Pet-Friendly Restaurants
These restaurants may not have a special menu, but welcome dogs on the patio and will often have a treat or water bowl ready for Fido.

A quiet outdoor garden is a restful downtown Healdsburg sanctuary for man and beast alike. (231 Center St., Healdsburg, 707.431.0100).

Willi’s Seafood and Raw Bar
The recently-expanded restaurant (403 Healdsburg Ave, Healdsburg, 707.433.9191) has a cozy patio that’s dog friendly. Stop in to Fideaux next door for a menagerie of squeak toys, collars, outfits and other pet-accessories for the well-heeled pet. (43 North Street, Healdsburg, 433-9935.

Five Guys Burgers and Fries
A large outdoor area makes for pet-friendly dining. The wafting smell of cooking meat is sure to drive you both wild. 2280 Mendocino Avenue, Santa Rosa, 528-2507.

Hopmonk Sebastopol
Dogs are allowed in the Beer Garden at the Sebastopol outpost of Gordon Biersch’s plucky brewpub. Keep in mind that while some dogs may dig the taste of beer, it’s probably not a good idea to share your pint. 230 Petaluma Ave,. Sebastopol, 829-7300.

Rosso Pizzeria and Wine Bar
You’ll often find a relaxing dog or two on the small patio of this Santa Rosa pizzeria. A table and chairs are set out on the sidewalk, along with a water bowl or two, to let pet parents know it’s okay to bring along their dog here. 53 Montgomery Drive, Santa Rosa, (707) 544-3221.

Share a toast with Fido: A number of wineries allow dogs on the grounds, and even into the tasting room.
Lambert Bridge Winery
(4085 W. Dry Creek Rd Healdsburg, 800.975.0555) is one of the most welcoming, hosting summertime Yappy Hours and Pizzas from 4:30-6:30pm each month. Owners indulge in wood-fired pizzas and wines while pups can sniff and mingle in the gardens.

Mutt Lynch Winery is all about dogs, from its labels to it’s welcoming stance on dogs. Owners said, “We’ll even do special events for your four legged friend – birthdays, “puppy” showers, even “Bark” Mitzvahs!” 602 Limerick Lane, Healdsburg, .942.6180. Open by appointment only.

Author: biteclub

Food Dining and Restaurants in Sonoma County and beyond, is Wine Country dining with Drive-Thru Sensibility.

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  1. I stopped at Miramar Estates with my dogs and was told that you had to be in the wine club to sit on their patio with your dog…regardless of the fact that the patio was completely empty at the time…

  2. Corksin Forestville has a beautiful patio that allows dogs. Also, Peter Lowell’s in Sebastopol. Very pretty patio. Both places have wonderful food. Additionally, You can taste the wonderful wines of Russian River Wines in the Corks tasting room that is adjacent to the restaurant.

  3. The Taco Grande on Center St. has a small table outside and serves customers there,food is delicious and your dog is welcome, very nice family!

  4. Marimar Estate Vineyards and Winery in Sebastopol invites dogs for tastings as well as Tapas on the patio.

  5. Will any of these restaurants let me bring my cat? Honestly people it’s so 1986 OC to take your dog to a restaurant.

  6. Two outside tables/patio at the Rincoln Valley Shopping Center.
    There love DOGS

  7. Visit Donnis and Marc Topel at their fabulous (Topel) tasting room in Healdsburg! They are dog-friendly, too and serve some lovely wines. Casual, friendly atmosphere and a great place to make friends, take your guests…or just hang out for a while and enjoy some to-notch wine with your four-legged friends.

  8. Healdsburger has outdoor seating and Great Burgers. Dogs are welcome!
    48 Healdsburg Avenue, Healdsburg

  9. Gag me with a bone!

  10. Singletree Inn in Healdsburg welcomes dogs on the patio. Be sure to have some coleslaw while you’re there.

  11. GroundChuck you better not visit Italy, I don’t have any dogs but I saw lots of them in restaurants there, and for the best part they were better behaved than some adults or children.

  12. I’d rather have dogs in restaurants than many people I see….Thanks for the list. Now I need a dog.

  13. Gee, groundChuck, too bad we don’t know what you look like, so we could avoid you if we happen to see you out in public.

  14. It’s interesting that you mention Hopmonk in your article. We have biked out there from Santa Rosa with our dog hoping to relax with a beer before the ride home, and been turned away from bringing our dog into the courtyard. We were, of course, really disappointed.

    Maybe the management has changed their tune. Good for us and our pups when we ride out this summer.

  15. Slice of Life in Sebastopol (next to Whole Foods) has a couple outside tables and they welcome dogs. Great vegetarian food too!

  16. This is a great list. Some new places to try.Thank you somuch for bringing up this subject.
    NOTE: Just because a restaurant has a patio doesn’t mean they allow dogs. I assumed this and tried to take my dog ot Flavor’s outdoor patio and was definitely told to go away. I sent them an email and made a call to get clarification from managemnt and never recieved a reply. So if we go downtown, we usually sit outside at La Vera.

  17. Thanks for putting together list of places to AVOID. I swear, people with dogs are the new smokers!

  18. What’s a Henweigh?

  19. Denny’s in Windsor has a great outside patio that allows dogs, they even provide a water bowl for the four legged diners! Patio is very accommodating and shady. The owners are supporters of Wine Country Greyhound Adoption and can often be seen with the greyhounds on the patio!

  20. Viola’s cafe in Montgomery village has a water bowl & a place to eat outside with your pet.

  21. Flying Goat coffee shop on the Healdsburg Square offers outdoor seating, a water bowl, and home-made doggie treats for $1.

  22. The Garden Grill right right outside of Guerneville on 116 has a dog friendly patio

  23. Bistro Des Copains in Occidental has welcomed dogs on the terrace since the day we opened. We have guests who only sit on the terrace throughout the year so they can have their dogs with them.

  24. Yogurtdale Blvd, a frozen yogurt shop in Cloverdale, welcomes pups to their outdoor seating area with a bowl of water and sometimes a treat. I love stopping by there on a warm day after walking around town.

  25. On the Windsor Town Green, KC’s Downtown Grill welcomes pets on their patio, as does Patterson’s Pub. On the winery side, one of the dog-friendly ones that we like is Arista.

  26. RV parks got the message a long time ago, more and more motels are doing the same by allowing dogs (both make some extra change with the deal), and now restaurants in America.
    A restaurant that allows dogs automatically appeals to me. They have won me over by that policy alone. The food and service would have to be truly awful for me not to change my opinion.
    I tend to favor other dog friendly events as well, like the Bodega Bay Fishermans Festival where dogs add a lot to the atsmophere.
    Yes, there are sometimes misbehaving dogs. The same could be said of some children as well, but both are part of the family, and it is a pleasant experience to go to “entire” family friendly restaurants.
    I have printed this list, and will be going to the dog friendly restaurants in our area.

  27. Sunflower Caffe, Sonoma. Great food, outdoor dining in a nice garden to the rear, and the same people watching as the Swiss Hotel mentioned earlier in front…

  28. Great input. Keep ’em coming.

  29. Charlie’s Restaurant off Shiloh at the Windsor Golf Club is very Dog Friendly on our patio.

  30. The Swiss Hotel (outside) in Sonoma is a great place for your dog—water bowls and dog biscuits. You can’t beat the people watching either. Always a great burger too.

  31. Larson Family Winery in Sonoma is dog-friendly and even has 3 labs that will greet and entertain you-Pete, Bubba and Sunny. Laid-back, room to roam and perfect for your pet. I actually saw a local woman who had brought her love bird (in a little cage) with her!

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