Kentucky Dog-Friendly Travel Guide

corgi sticking head out a car window

Traveling with your dog can be a blast, but it can also be stressful if you don’t plan ahead. After all, unless you’ve looked into it beforehand, you can’t guarantee that everywhere you go will be dog-friendly. That’s where a dog-friendly travel guide can help. If you’re planning to take a trip to the “Bluegrass State” with your dog, use this Kentucky dog-friendly travel guide to start your research:

5 Dog-Friendly Activities in Kentucky

Sightseeing is a standard part of every trip, but not every landmark will welcome your dog. You may be able to use a doggie daycare for some things, but you also want to make sure you include experiences both you and your dog can enjoy together. Check out some of these dog-friendly activities in Kentucky to see if any of them should make it onto your trip itinerary:

1. Kentucky Horse Park

The Kentucky Horse Park is located in Lexington and it’s dog-friendly! Although your dog will not be allowed inside the restaurant or the museum buildings, they are allowed to join you on the grounds.

And, since this horse park is a working horse farm, competition facility, and educational theme park, that means there is still plenty of stuff for you and your dog to see and explore together. Your dog just needs to be leashed, in a carrying case, or crated and within your control at all times.

2. Bernheim Arboretum

Located in Clermont, the Bernheim Arboretum is a must-see for all nature lovers. The Arboretum and research forest span 14,000 acres. Although only 2,000 of these acres are open to the public, there is still plenty to see and do. Between 40 miles of trail, several exhibits, and expansive gardens, you will have more than enough to explore.

Plus, your dog is welcome to join you as long as they are leashed and under your control at all times. The only place your dog can’t go is inside the buildings. But, since most of what you want to see is outside, you won’t be missing out on much.

3. Lost River Cave

Should your travels in Kentucky bring you near Bowling Green, consider spending some time at Lost River Cave. This is the only place in Kentucky where you’ll be able to go on an underground boat tour. The best part? Your dog is welcome to join you as long as they are leashed and under your control.

In addition to a fantastic boat tour of underground caverns, there are also a lot of other activities outside of the cave. There are hiking trails that feature a waterfall and natural spring, a treasure mining station, and even a butterfly house. Your dog may not be allowed in the butterfly house, but they’re more than welcome around the grounds. You’ll even find drinking fountains for dogs along the trails.

4. Buffalo Trace Distillery

Buffalo Trace Distillery is located in Frankfort and it’s dog-friendly! It’s also the world’s most award-winning distillery – you just have to of legal drinking age to enter. Your leashed dog can join you everywhere, except for the bottling building.

You’ll have to call ahead for a tour, since times, reservation requirements, and more will vary, but there are several tours available. You can tour the grounds, take a National Historic Landmark Tour, or even take a Ghost Tour of the paranormal areas! No matter what you and your dog like to see, there’s likely something for you at Buffalo Trace Distillery.

5. Blue Moon Canoe & Kayak

If you and your pooch are into water sports, consider setting aside some time on the water with Blue Moon Canoe & Kayak. This outdoor adventure outfit is located in Louisville and offers canoe, kayak, and bike rentals as well as guided tours of the Parklands of Floyds Fork April through October. And, they’re dog-friendly! Your dog is welcome to join you on any of the rentals. A life jacket will be provided for you if you don’t have your own, but you’ll want to bring one for your dog.

3 Dog-Friendly Hotels in Kentucky

After a day full of fun and adventure, you will want to make sure you and your dog have a comfortable place to relax and rest up. Not every hotel welcomes pets, so you want to make sure you research places to stay ahead of time and book your room in advance. Here are a few dog-friendly hotels in Kentucky to jumpstart your research:

1. 21c Museum Hotel

As you’re planning your trip, if you think you’ll need a place to stay in Louisville or Lexington, consider the 21c Museum Hotel. Both of these hotels are situated in great locations. You’re welcome to bring two dogs of any size with you.

There is an additional pet fee, which is $75 per stay, but you can leave your dog unattended in your room as long as they are well-behaved. Treats, bowls, and even beds are available when you check-in and there are relief areas around the hotels for your dog.

2. Ashley Quarters Hotel

Should you need a place to stay near Florence, take a closer look at the Ashley Quarters Hotel. This hotel allows you to bring two dogs of any size with you. There is an additional pet fee, which is $15 per night with a limit of $75 per week.

Easily accessible grassy relief areas are located near the hotel for your convenience. And, you can leave your dog(s) in your room unattended as long as they are quiet and well-behaved. Plus, there are some great attractions and several parks nearby for you and your dog to explore.

3. Best Western Plus Georgetown Corporate Center Hotel

If your travels will bring you closer to Georgetown when you need a place to stay, consider booking a room at the Best Western Plus Georgetown Corporate Center Hotel. You are permitted to bring two dogs up to 80 pounds with you for your stay.

There is an additional pet fee, which is $20 per night and treats are available at check-in. You’ll have a ground floor room so that you have easy access to the grassy areas along the sides of the hotel. But, you cannot leave your dog unattended in your room.

4 Dog-Friendly Restaurants in Kentucky

When traveling with your dog, you’ll want to pack some food and snacks for you both. And, you can always stop at drive-thrus or convenience stores for some grub. But, that can get boring and it often means you miss out on the local flavor. Instead of missing out, consider stopping by these dog-friendly restaurants in Kentucky if your travels bring you nearby:

1. Keystone Bar & Grill

If you find yourself in Covington when you want something to eat, consider stopping at Keystone Bar & Grill for a meal. Not only do they have a varied menu, but they also have dog-friendly patio seating. They also offer water to your dog in a water bowl you can take home with you. Plus, they sometimes host dog brunches! Make sure you check out their events page before you go to see if they’ll be hosting one when you’ll be visiting.

2. Doodles

Doodles is a restaurant in Lexington with a menu that features comfort food using locally-sourced ingredients. They serve breakfast and lunch. Plus, their patio seating is dog-friendly and they’ll bring your dog some water for your visit. With plenty to choose from on the menu, there is something for everyone whether you’re here for breakfast, brunch, or lunch.

3. The Sage Rabbit

Also located in Lexington is The Sage Rabbit. This local favorite is chef and family-owned and serves lunch and dinner throughout the week as well as brunch on Saturdays. It’s a casual restaurant with a menu that features homemade flavor made from locally-sourced ingredients. From soups, desserts, pasta, and more, there is something on this menu for everyone. And, their covered patio is dog-friendly. Plus, your dog will get water and a treat while you eat.

4. Dizzy Whizz Drive-In

If you find yourself in Louisville and needing something to eat, you can try stopping by the Dizzy Whizz Drive-In. Since you park and eat in your car, this restaurant is inherently dog-friendly. And, if you’d rather sit outside, the patio is dog-friendly.

This is a classic drive-in that serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. They even have a dairy bar that features ice cream, shakes, and more. Whether you want the famous Whizzburger™ or something else, you’re bound to find something you like on this menu.

This Kentucky dog-friendly travel guide is a good place to start, but it certainly doesn’t cover all the dog-friendly places Kentucky has to offer. Wherever you decide to go, make sure you check ahead of time to make sure it will welcome your dog as a visitor too.

If you’re headed to another state, check out a few of the other dog-friendly travel guides available. Here’s to safe travels, happy trails, and wagging tails no matter where you and your dog choose to adventure!