Alexandria with Fido

Dog-friendly vacation in Alexandria with a dose of colonial history

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Virginia is not just for Lovers…it’s for Dog Lovers too. The Old Dominion is one of a handful of states to have an official canine mascot, the American Foxhound, which dates back to the days of George Washington. Everyone knows Washington was the father of the country, but Virginia foxhunters also know he was the father of Virginia’s state dog. Washington was an avid foxhunter who also bred English Foxhounds with several larger French Staghounds he received from the Marquis de Lafayette to create a canine lineage that continues.

Exploring Alexandria With Your Dog

Explore Old Town your four-legged friend and catch the Alexandria Farmers Market in the town square. You’ll find that many merchants put out complimentary water stations for visiting canines.

To see Mount Vernon hop aboard a Potomac Canine Cruise or hop into the car to walk the grounds (also pet friendly) so your pal can sniff out his Colonial ancestors. About two miles north Mount Vernon on the George Washington Memorial Parkway, Fort Hunt National Park is a nice place to stop for a long walk. The park was originally part of George Washington’s estate, and leashed dogs are welcome at this local favorite. Virginia laws prohibit dogs from outdoor restaurant seating, you can pack a picnic to enjoy river views.

Alexandria’s Department of Recreation, Parks and Cultural Activities offers 18 off-leash areas throughout the city, including five dog parks with fenced enclosures.

Ready for evening socializing? The Kimpton’s Hotel Monaco hosts weekly Yappy Hours for local and visiting dogs. Alexandria actually boasts three Kimpton’s pet-centric boutique hotels.

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