Philadelphia’s brotherly love naturally extends to its dogs. Just like humans, dogs need time to revive, rejuvenate and restore energy levels, and Philadelphia is just the place to do it. When your four-legged companion needs a reward or a pick-me-up, treat your friend to a perfect dog day afternoon filled with playing, preening and pampering, right here in Philly.
Schuylkill River Dog Park Run
2500 Lombard St.
Philadelphia, PA 19127
Start your pet’s day with sun, fun, fresh air and a run in the park. The Schuylkill River Dog Park offers dogs and owners a safe, shady respite from the grime and grind of the city. Sponsored by the Friends of the Schuylkill River Park, this off-leash dog park has been in operation since 1997. It features a newly resurfaced run area for dogs to romp, enhanced lighting and a water fountain, as well as park benches for owners to sit and relax. And don’t fret about smaller pets. The park provides a special area solely for tinier pups.
Related: Best Dog Parks
You Dirty Dog Do-It-Yourself Dog Wash
926 N. 3rd St.
Philadelphia, PA 19123
Price: $15 to $20
Hours: Mon – by appointment; Tues – closed; Wed to Fri – 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sat and Sun –8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
A frolic in the park can get your dog seriously dirty. That’s where Philadelphia’s first coin-operated, do-it-yourself dog wash comes in. Simply don a complimentary apron, slip tokens into the K9000 automated washing machine, and get ready for a wash–and bonding experience with your favorite canine. With the turn of a dial, your dirty dog will receive a shampoo, a flea and tick treatment, conditioning, a rinse and a blow dry, all for less than $20.
Just Dogs! Gourmet
1804 Chestnut St.
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Hours: Mon to Sat – 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sun – noon to 5 p.m.
At this point in the day, your canine deserves some tasty doggie delights. Head to Just Dogs! Gourmet. Founded in 2002, the shop carries treats and confections that are all hand-made using natural, human-grade ingredients. Your pooch can munch on snacks including cheddar cheese pretzels, peppermint bones and chicken fingers, or enjoy a more substantial yappy meal with a Tailhouse Burger, cheddar cheese fries and a toy. While at the shop, dog lovers may purchase breed-loving mugs, magnet pads, greeting cards and pins, too.
The Bark Avenue Boutique
107 N. Aberdeen Ave.
Wayne, PA 19086
Hours: Mon to Sat – 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Opened in 2010, The Bark Avenue Boutique resembles more of an upscale Manhattan clothing store than a place to primp your pup. While the shop is located 19 miles outside of Center City Philadelphia, it’s worth the trip. The doggie paradise specializes in unique, one-of-a-kind outfits, bedding, toys, collars and artwork. You can find everything from leashes made with Lilly Pulitzer fabric to pink high-top sneakers for your BFF. Canine strollers, crates, gates and car accessories, as well as breed jewelry and mugs for dog lovers, are included in the boutique’s ever-changing inventory.
The Piazza at Schmidts
1050 N. Hancock St.
Philadelphia, PA 19123
Hours: daily – courtyard open 24/7
Now that your canine looks dapper and contemporary, take a stroll through The Piazza at Schmidts. One of the trendiest places in Philadelphia, The Piazza is just a fun spot to take Fido. The 80,000-square-foot, open-air plaza features beautiful landscaping, shops, restaurants, a huge stage and a 40-foot LED screen that broadcasts movies and local sporting events. It hosts dog adoption days and pet expos regularly as well. In the spring and summer months, dozens of canines and their owners can make friends in the 30,000-square-foot, hand-paved, Italian-style courtyard.
Wag Whole Animal Gym
611 S. 2nd St.
Philadelphia, PA 19147
Price: Call for fees
Hours: Mon, Tues, Thurs and Fri – 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Wed – 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sat – 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., Sun – closed
For a great way to finish up the perfect day, take a swim at Philadelphia’s first veterinary rehabilitation center. The facility offers acupuncture, private gym time, laser and ultrasound treatments, but man’s best friend will love the 30-minute aquatic sessions featuring an underwater treadmill and water jets. Perfect for older dogs that can’t handle running around with the young pups anymore, Wag Whole Animal Gym’s swim sessions will make your dog’s day.