If vacation planning has you looking for beach destinations where you can enjoy some fun and sun with your four-legged friend, The Beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel in Southwest Florida welcomes dogs with open paws! Bon Appétit!
Big Blue Brewing: Big Blue is that friend with the "My dog is smarter than your honor student" bumper sticker on their car. Here dogs are presented with bowls of water and special doggo menus of fresh, ear-scratchingly good food. The icing on the pupcake? Proceeds from that menu benefit local no-kill shelters, so everyone leaves with tails wagging.
The Island Cow: If belly rubs were currency, dogs here would be rich. The Island Cow's staff doesn't just tolerate dogs, they love them (and then carefully wash their hands). If only the menu were as honed in. Fortunately, breakfast is solid, as are most of the seafood dishes. And if Bosco's happy, shouldn't we all be?
Bonita Bill's: Turns out, humans aren't the only ones who bask in the glory of waterfront dining. Bonita Bill's is a super casual place (lots of fried menu items and domestic beers). But it's a place that's as kind to your pupper as its views are to your senses.
Rumrunners: This upscale restaurant accepts dogs of all kinds — little purse-sized fellas and big, unwieldy ones that knock their heads on the tables in impossibly adorable ways. They're treated as the two-legged clientele are, with respect and plenty to drink. But where they get head pats, we get the stellar creations of Chef Todd Johnson. Fair enough trade.
Blue Pointe Oyster Bar: Call ahead, tell the host there will be a dog with you, and you'll be seated on the patio with a bowl of ice water awaiting your pup. That's service. On the human side, the briny oysters, uber-fresh seafood and bracing martinis are just as excellent.
McGregor Cafe: I once sat here as patrons and servers alike helped calm a dog that had escaped from a nearby home. They brought it water and treats and secured it to one of the patio tables. By the time the owner came, the dog was in la-la land, living its best life. I think it knew exactly what it was doing.
Other restaurants in the area that welcome dogs include: Bistro 41, and Ford’s Garage in Fort Myers; Pinchers Crab Shack, and Survey Cafe in Bonita Springs. Sanibel and Captiva also have many choices for dining with you pup; George & Wendy’s Sanibel Seafood Grille, Keylime Bistro, Pinocchio’s Original Italian Ice Cream, Cantina Captiva, RC Otter’s Island Eats, Sanibel Deli & Coffee Factory, The Pecking Order Fried Chicken, Cip’s Place, Mucky Duck Restaurant, Schnapper’s Hots, Over Easy Café, Blue Giraffe Island Dining, Geppetto’s Beach Foodies, and the Green Flash Restaurant. You can also visit BringFido to find more restaurants that welcome your furry companions.