Paws-itively Great Dog-Friendly Activities in Gatlinburg


If you’re a dog owner, you’re likely familiar with this stressful, pre-vacation decision: leave your furry family member at home, or bring them along where they might end up stuck in the cabin while you’re out and about. Fortunately, the Smokies (and a selection of our Smoky Mountain cabins) are pet-friendly places with plenty of activities to keep pooches and their people happy. Bring your pup to the Great Smoky Mountains and make him part of the memories! Here is our definitive list of pet-friendly activities and other doggie delights in the Smoky Mountains.

Pamper your Pup

jack russell dog relaxing and lying, in spa wellness center ,wearing a bathrobe and funny sunglasses

Take your dog shopping for a souvenir at one of several pet-friendly stores in Gatlinburg! First, spoil them at Bonediggety Barkery, a unique pet boutique featuring gifts and a bakery full of pet-approved treats.  In the chillier months, browse doggie sweaters and other gifts at Paws and Claws Pet Fashion, located at the outdoor mountain mall on the Parkway. Walk your furry buddy around The Village Shops to check out a collection of specialty stores, eateries, and galleries set in a wooded location that your pup will love. (Just be sure to check if you’ll need to tie them up outside while you browse.)

Doggie Daycare

If your doggie is ready for a vacation of his own, try one of the area’s pet daycare facilities. Your furry friend can run and play with other dogs while you check out the human-centric attractions of the Smokies. Barks and Recreation is centrally located and offers full service grooming, boarding, and daycare services. Puppies can frolic together in the indoor/outdoor play area and enjoy amenities such as orthopedic beds and optional cage-free boarding. Open most holidays and weekends, Just Fer Paws is another daycare which boasts specialized individual attention for your dog. Visiting Dollywood? If so, your pet can spend the day at Dollywood’s Doggywood daycare while you spend time in the park!

Have a Dog-Gone Good Meal

It can be ruff finding a restaurant that’s dog-friendly. Luckily, Gatlinburg offers a few fantastic dining options for everyone in the family…even the slobbery ones. Polish off a gourmet burger or steak at Howard’s Steakhouse which offers a quaint patio, which is open to pups, that overlooks a babbling stream. Another delicious option, Best Italian, has pizza, all your Italian favorite dishes, and a dog friendly porch.  If you and your family are craving a fun meal, savor a giant corn dog and snow cone at Fannie Farkle’s. This Gatlinburg institution offers sidewalk service and a vibrant arcade. Hot-diggety dog!

Explore the Outdoors with Man’s Best Friend

Looking for adventure? Get your tail wagging and get outside to enjoy the impressive nature of the Smoky Mountains. Take a hike in the Smoky Mountains National Park which features trails, such as the scenic Gatlinburg Trail and the Oconaluftee River Trail, that allow dogs. Pack a lunch because doggies are also welcome at the mountain picnic areas! Don’t want your doggie to miss the view? Take your furry friend on a scenic drive.

Need pet friendly lodgings for your mountain getaway? Fetch our portfolio of puppy-ready Smoky Mountains Vacation Rentals here!