Dog-friendly capitol riverfront

A Dog’s Life in Capitol Riverfront

Dog-friendly is an understatement when describing the Capitol Riverfront. From Pups in the Park at Nats Park in the summer months to On Tap’s annual Wiener 500 Dash every fall, the opportunities for canine fun are endless. We caught up with seven-year-old golden retriever Aurey, who has lived with her owner Mike in the Capitol Yards building for four years, to find out what she loves most about Capitol Riverfront.

On Tap: What’s your favorite dog park in Capitol Riverfront?
Aurey: Well, I do love our dog park in Yards Park ( It’s always busy and I make so many new friends there. However, my favorite spot is down on the “steps” that overlook the river. It’s full of families (and kids with yummy, sticky faces to lick) who want to say hello and pet me.

OT: What about your go-to walk with Mike around the neighborhood?
A: I love going to the Fairgrounds ( by Nats Park. People are so friendly and love on me, and the bartenders there even give me cups of ice to snack on. One time, a bartender gave me an old baseball he had behind the bar – it was the best! I’m also a huge fan of the boardwalk (part of the Anacostia Riverwalk). Sometimes I chase birds – it’s so much fun!

OT: What’s the best location to get doggie treats?
A: Being a golden retriever has its advantages! People always want to give me treats when I’m at Unleashed by Petco   ( for a $5 bath on Wednesday nights.

OT: What restaurants do you like to visit with Mike?
A: There are so many places with patios that get excited when I visit. I take Mike to Agua 301 (301 Water St. SE) – he loves their margaritas! I also like to take him to Willie’s Brew & Que (300 Tingey St. SE) to relax on the patio with a cold Corona Light.

OT: What dog-friendly events do you never miss? 
A: My favorites are the Wiener 500 in Yards Park every fall, and Barktoberfest – they have a van full of cats! A van full of cats to chase…I mean adopt? It’s agreat time.


dogs of on tap

Dogs of On Tap

Dogs of On Tap

On Tap is a dog-friendly office, and we’re super proud of our eclectic group of adorable pups! Without further ado, please meet the one and only dogs of On Tap.

BLUE (left)
Age: Four-and-a-half
Breed: Australian shepherd mix (a.k.a. mutt)
Owner: Theresa
Best personality trait: Loves other dogs and wants to be everyone’s best friend
Favorite activity: Riding in the back of the Jeep with his head sticking out the window
Ideal day: Going to the dog park and then sitting outside somewhere where he can lay down, relax and people-watch
Local hangout: Cantina Marina
Famous at On Tap for: Napping on the cold kitchen floor or laying on the couch with Alanna

IRIS (top right)
Age: Two-and-a-half
Breed: Boston terrier
Owner: Monica
Best personality trait: Quirky, incredibly sweet and always game for singing duets with her dad
Favorite activity:
Fetching the tennis ball, hands-down
Ideal day:
Morning cuddle session followed by a day filled with tennis balls and playing with friends
Local hangout:
Shirlington Dog Park or her grandparents’ sweet pad in Marshall, Va.
Famous at On Tap for:
Playing with her buddies Blue and Latte, and begging everyone to throw her the tennis ball

LATTE (bottom center)
Age:  Six months
Breed: Peewee puggle
Owner: Adrianne
Best personality trait: Her endearing optimism
Favorite activity: Giving kisses and snuggling up
Ideal day: Tons of activity, lots of cuddle time and plenty of treats
Local hangout: Yards Park
Famous at On Tap for: Playing with the other doggies

OLIVIA (bottom left)
Age: 4
Breed: Australian shepherd
Owner: Jenn
Best personality trait: Super snuggly and energetic
Favorite activity: Going to Great Meadow and running free
Ideal day: Waking Jenn up with many kisses and talking, going to the barn to see the horses, then hopping in the truck and going somewhere fun for a walk
Local hangout: Cantina Marina and Yards Park
Famous at On Tap for: Not being quite ready for the office

OLLIE (top center)
Age: 15 months
Breed: French bulldog/chihuahua mix
Owner: Nick C.
Best personality trait: Extremely friendly and loving
Favorite activity: Wrestling with Dad
Ideal day: Visiting his grandparents and running free in their large backyard with his favorite ball
Local hangout: Enjoying a taste from back home on the dog-friendly patio at Agua 301
Famous at On Tap for: Horseplay with the others

dog friendly dc
All photos courtesy of featured businesses

Dog-Friendly DC

It’s no secret that DC is a dog-friendly city. From Capitol Riverfront to Shirlington, there’s no shortage of love for pups in neighborhoods in and around the DMV. As summer approaches, opportunities to hang with your pooch outside of the house or your local park grow tenfold – doggie happy hours, canine-themed festivities and outdoor venues abound. On Tap caught up with some of our favorite pup-focused businesses to get their insight into the best dog-friendly events and locales in and around the city.

Favorite Dog-Friendly Summer Events

Sarah H.B. Cook, Special Events Manager at the Washington Humane Society: The Bark Ball (on Saturday, June 11) benefiting the Washington Humane Society/Washington Animal Rescue League because it’s the only black-tie event where DC’s movers and shakers can bring their four-legged friends as their guests.

Toni Woods, CEO of Anytime K9, LLC (dog-walking, pet-sitting and training services): I love [On Tap’s] Running of the Chihuahuas as it is the cutest event of the year. Day of the Dog (on Saturday, May 7) is great because it is held in the fenced-in historical Congressional Cemetery and has food trucks provided by yours truly, Anytime K9.

Terry McLaurin, Social Media & Marketing Director at Wagtime (pet spa and boutique): Our top three dog-friendly events would be the [Day of the Dog], [On Tap’s] Running of the Chihuahuas and Pups in the Park (runs April through October). We look forward to being a part of these events. They’re always a fun time for everyone!

Best Doggie Happy Hours

Kelly Kundrat, Outreach and Communications Manager at Metro Mutts DC (pet supplies and services): There are so many to choose from! There are quite a few pet-friendly restaurants near us on H Street. We love happy hours at Driftwood Kitchen [and] TD Burger.

Kristina Robertson, President of Barkley Square Pets (pet-sitting and dog-walking service): Yappy Hour at Mad Fox in Falls Church, Va., hosted by yours truly.

Anytime K9’s Toni Woods: We throw a yappie hour monthly at various apartment buildings around the city. We provide beverages as treats for the dogs while giving them information about our services.

Washington Humane’s Sarah Cook: Cantina Marina’s yappy hour by Nationals Park. These yappy hours run from May 16 to September 19 on every third Monday each month. [They’re] the perfect way to enjoy the weather by the water with your pup!

Top Outdoor Hangouts

Metro Mutts’ Kelly Kundrat: I love Lincoln Park! It is located in the heart of Capitol Hill, and has a great walking trail around its perimeter and throughout.

Barkley Square’s Kristina Robertson: Shirlington Dog Park.

Wagtime’s Terry McLaurin: We always take our dogs to Rock Creek Park. There are so many different trails – it’s an adventure for you and your pups. Not to mention some of the local dog parks in Shaw!

Anytime K9’s Toni Woods: A great unofficial dog park in DC is Lincoln Park in Capitol Hill. It’s a daily meeting place for dogs to get to know each other and share treats, toys and games of fetch.

Washington Humane’s Sarah Cook: I love spending time on the Mall with my pup! There’s always other wiggly tails to meet and greet while you’re out there.

Perks of Being a Dog in the DMV

Washington Humane’s Sarah Cook: With so many outdoor parks including the Mall, Rock Creek Park, the Arboretum and many dog parks throughout the city, it’s obvious that DC is a dog-friendly town! Whether they’re chasing Frisbees in the dog park, or licking ice cream by the Capitol building – it’s obvious that DC loves DC animals!

Anytime K9’s Toni Woods: DC is a great city for dogs because of all of the green space! Unlike in many large cities, parks are everywhere and it’s not hard to find a nice spot to hang out or take care of business.

Metro Mutts’ Kelly Kundrat: We love seeing the unique ways large pet-friendly residential buildings incorporate dog-friendly spaces into their designs. We’re seeing more and more rooftop or courtyard dog parks, as well as pet spas.

Check out information below on each of these dog-friendly businesses.  

Anytime K9, LLC: 1232 9th St. NW, DC and 900 M St. SE, DC;
Barkley Square Pets: 211 N. Union St. Ste. 100, Alexandria, VA and 105 N. Virginia Ave. Ste. 101, Falls Church, VA;
Metro Mutts DC: 508 H St. NE, DC and 407 8th St. SE, DC;
Wagtime: 1232 9th St. NW, DC and 900 M St. SE, DC;
Washington Humane Society:
Various locations around DC;

All photos courtesy of featured businesses