One Tank Trip: Spend a full day with your dog in St. Pete

- Sometimes you want to go out and spend the day with your best friend, and if that friend happens to be Fido, there are plenty of places rolling out the red carpet for both of you.

This One Tank Trip isn’t just about one spot, but rather an area with several spots where you can spend a day with your pooch. While the Tampa Bay area overall can be quite welcoming to pets (WalletHub ranked Tampa number six in the nation on pet-friendliness this year), this trip takes us to St. Petersburg.

The first stop is Kenwood Dog Park on 20th Street North near I-275. It’s a city park with a small-dog pen and large-dog pen, picnic tables, shade, and a dog wash. Running underneath the I-275 overpass, the park is quite spacious and is a surprising use of green space. It could be a great spot to work up a thirst before heading to one of the nearby dog-friendly businesses.

Next up, and just minutes away is The Dog Bar, located at 2300 Central Avenue, in the Grand Central District of downtown. This human bar/dog park is a membership-based establishment for people 21-years-old and up. It charges $40 a year for the first dog and $20 a year per additional dog, and members say the fun is worth the price.

“We provide a good cocktail and a tired dog,” said Fred Metzler, owner of The Dog Bar. “Those are the services we offer.”

People are invited to sit back and relax with a cold drink from the bar or partake in some bar games like cornhole, skee-ball, and ping pong. However, most patrons seem to amuse themselves by meeting and greeting new dogs and watching their furbabies make new friends too.

“In the very beginning, a number of people would say this is my happy place,” Metzler said. “That was really nice. Then it became, ‘I hope this is what heaven looks like.’”

“Generally, the interaction with the other dogs, the physicality of it, the mental stimulation, so many dogs in one place, sends them home tired.”

If your pup works up an appetite, you might take them down the street to Ferg’s, located at 1320 Central Avenue in the Edge District. Once just for the two-legged sports fans, the bar recently expanded its clientele to four-legged friends, who are welcome on the patio while leashed or unleashed in the pens. 

Ferg’s Dog Park & Grill offers a “dog chow” menu and two enclosures with seating and a shady tree canopy. 

“You see people bringing dogs, and the dogs start playing and then the people are very happy,” said Mark Ferguson, owner of Ferg’s. “It’s like having a child.”

Ferguson says the dog chow is made on site, and there are a few options.

“We ground up chicken or beef, put in rice, spinach, peas, anything we have extra of and it’s always fresh,” Ferguson said. “You can buy it here, and the dogs can eat it here or take it home.”

Ferg’s also has dog-friendly ice cream. Those places are just a start, but are, by no means, the only options for Rover.

Other dog-friendly places/activities nearby:

“Yappy Hour” at Pinellas Ale Works (PAW)
1962 1st Avenue S.
St. Petersburg, FL 33712

3 Daughter’s Brewing
222 22nd St. S.
St Petersburg, FL 33712

Cage Brewing 
2001 1st Avenue South
St. Petersburg 33712

“Count Barkula’s Ball” at St. Pete Brewing Co.
544 1st Avenue North
Saint Petersburg, Florida 33701

Fort De Soto Dog Beach
3500 Pinellas Bayway S.,
Tierra Verde, FL 33715

Picnic Island Beach Dog Park (across the bridge)
7409 Picnic Island Blvd.
Tampa, FL 33616

Dog Day at the Rays
Tropicana Field
1 Tropicana Dr., St. Petersburg, FL 33705
NoteCheck during regular season to see which day the Rays are holding this event

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