Tips for Traveling with Dogs in Shakopee

Traveling is more fun when you bring a friend. And if that friend has fur, four legs, and a taste for treats, Shakopee, Minn., is a great place to visit! Here are our picks for the best things to do with your dog in and around Shakopee.


Bring Your Dog to the Minnesota Renaissance Festival

Elephant rides and smoked turkey legs are excellent reasons to visit the Minnesota Renaissance Festival. Here’s another: It’s super dog-friendly! Ren-Fest located in Shakopee, is only a couple minutes outside the city but it’ll feel a whole world away. You and your four-legged buddy will have plenty of historical sights and sounds to enjoy. Ren-Fest runs from late August to early October. Leashed dogs who are up on their shots are welcome on the grounds. Sorry, cat, bird, and snake owners. No other pets are allowed.


Go Off Leash at Southbridge Community Park


If jugglers and jousting tournaments aren’t your thing, you and your dog can find less- flashy fun at Southbridge Community Park. The park boasts 10 acres, two skating rinks, and plenty of off-leash space for your dogs to get their run on. Its convenient location also makes it a perfect place to stop in for a quick game of fetch. There’s a half-acre area reserved just for small breeds. Southbridge Community Park isn’t exactly wilderness, but the area’s biting and stinging bugs are still a concern for you and your dog. Make sure to bring appropriate gear, repellent, and a flea collar.

Note: The city requires all dogs over 6 months old to have a Shakopee registration tag. This tag is a must to make use of many of the area’s pet-friendly destinations, including the Southbridge dog park. Shakopee registration tags cost $25; you can order online.


Take to the Trail


What dog — and what dog owner — doesn’t love a good hike? Minnesota is the “Land of 10,000 Lakes,” and one of the best ways to see some of those lakes is via a hiking trail. Shakopee’s 920 acres of parks include more than 60 miles of trails. That’s plenty of room for you and your pooch to explore and burn off some calories. And speaking of calories …


Grab a Bark-Friendly Bite


You’ll find plenty of dog-friendly dining in this city. Familiar staples, including Culver’s, Panera, and Dairy Queen, all have convenient locations that welcome dogs. If you’re looking for more local flavor, Shakopee doesn’t disappoint. Check out O’Briens Public House for that authentic Irish feel. Their outdoor patio is also perfect for you and your fury friend to find a comfortable spot to take in the mix of old and new Shakopee. If you’d prefer a dog-friendly burger and beer, pause the pup’s paws at Shakopee Brewhall.


Dog Day at the Spa


Like their owners, pets like a little pampering from time to time. Taking your pooch to the doggy day spa gives them a treat. It also gives you the chance to kick back and focus

on your own creature comforts. Within the town of Shakopee, Doggie Doos’ Spa and Retreat provides full service dog grooming, doggie daycare, and dog, cat, and animal boarding for the southwest metro. Or, if you crave some alone time, drop off your pooch and take the next few hours for yourself. Everyone needs a break from their traveling companion from time to time, even if they are your best friend.

Janine Macallister is a veterinarian’s assistant who loves to travel and insists on taking her Siberian husky with her on all vacations. Her RV is fitted with a special seat belt harness and bed just for Dolly, who knows the rules of the road.


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