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The Best Cities in the United States for Pet Owners

By Roommates.com, on 06/23/2020

One of the most challenging aspects of any move is the decision to bring along your current pet or to adopt or purchase a new one. We seem to have a unique connection with our pets and for some of us, that connection can be even stronger than our closest friendships.

For people without roommates or family, even a goldfish can make a big difference in their daily mood. Still many landlords do not allow pets and many environments simply don’t accommodate our animal friends. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the best cities in the country for pet owners.

Portland, Oregon

Of course! Why wouldn’t Portland be the perfect place to have an animal sidekick! The city is sprawling with dozens of unique residential neighborhoods, and even the downtown region is lightly congested and super pet friendly. In fact, Animal Planet recently named Portland the most pet-friendly city in the United States.

Many bars, restaurants, and coffee shops allow you to bring your dog or cat on the premises, and the city boasts more than 30 dog parks (the most per capita in the U.S) where your fur buddy can hang loose and get some much-needed exercise. Additionally, there are ankle-high drinking fountains around seemingly every corner so that your little furry buddies can quench their thirst!

San Diego, California

As if anyone needed another reason to love San Diego, it happens to be one of the most pet-friendly cities on the planet. There are eight pet-friendly beaches that encourage visitors to bring their animals for a little fun in the sun, and there are even dog surfing tournaments held every summer! Two of the best are Dog Beach at Open Beach, where your dog can run wild off-leash and Fiesta Island, which offers a calm stroll or a spirited hike on the plentiful sand dunes.

In addition to the gorgeous pet-friendly beaches, San Diego’s famous shopping districts are also happy to accommodate you and your four-legged friends. Seaport Village is the perfect spot to fix yourself up with a new wardrobe with your pet in tow as your style advisor. Or, if you’d rather go check out some super cool arts and crafts, grab a leash and the two of you can head down the Spanish Village Arts Center to scope out trendy and current pieces from world-famous artists.


Seattle, Washington

Starting to notice a trend? It seems as though cities on the West Coast are just more open when it comes to pets, and Seattle is no exception. In fact, there are actually more dogs than children in Seattle! Whether or not that is a good thing we’ll leave up to you to decide, but it definitely shows how much they adore their animals. There are more than 20 off-leash dog parks throughout the city, and there also seem to be more “cat people” than anywhere in the universe.

Seattle also boasts one of the first cat cafes in America. Meowtropolitan is a kitty oasis where owners can bring their cats to chill while they sip on their beloved coffee. Not only that, but the business actually hosts cats from a local shelter and patrons have the option of adopting them! Naturally, they have some deliciously silly puns for their coffee. Our favorite: The Catpuccino.

Chicago

The last city on our list finally bucks the West Coast trend and might actually surprise you. Despite being a densely-populated metropolis with less-than-pleasant sights, sounds, and smells, Chicago is definitely in the running as the most pet-friendly city in the United States. It’s in the Midwest, so the people are obviously friendly, and unlike most cities, virtually every bar will allow you to bring your dog, as long as they are well-behaved and leashed.

For people with dogs that are looking to move to Chicago, you’re in luck! There are dozens of great neighborhoods for our canine companions. In “The Loop,” which is the downtown section of Chicago, more than 70% of residential units allow dogs. And Wicker Park is one of the hippest, most progressive neighborhoods in America – a place where you and your dog can grab a slice of pizza and a beer and even catch a Cubbies game!

Overall, you can make a pet work in almost any city but if having your cuddle buddy is a priority, check these cities out first! Of course, making your pet work with your roommate is a huge part of making daily life go smoothly no matter the city. If you’re in the market for a new roommate, check out our roommate finder and be sure to run your furry friend by a potential roommate!