Have Dog, Will Travel
Oregon is generally considered a dog-friendly state, and the Mid-Willamette Valley is no exception. In fact, Salem, Oregon, was named to Dog Fancy Magazine’s Top 40 Dog-Friendly Cities in 2010. With room to roam and plenty of pet-friendly accommodations, you’ll have a pawsitively good time exploring the area with your four-legged best friend.
In the Mid-Willamette Valley, you’ll find several pet-friendly places to stay. Many of the Best Western locations, including Best Western PLUS Mill Creek Inn, Best Western Pacific Highway Inn, Best Western Woodburn and Best Western Newberg Inn, allow up to two dogs per room.
To make pets feel extra welcome, the Phoenix Inn Suites Salem hands out doggie treat bags on arrival.
In nearby Silverton, Oregon, The Oregon Garden Resort rolls out the welcome mat for both two and four-legged guests. The resort allows dogs to accompany owners in its adjacent 80-acre botanical garden, which includes a pet-themed garden.
If you’re heading to the Detroit Lake Recreation Area, The Lodge at Detroit Lake will happily house you and your pet in one of its cozy cabins.
Two of the area’s state parks, Champoeg State Heritage Area and Silver Falls State Park, also have designated cabins or yurts that are pet-friendly. At Silver Falls State Park, pets are permitted on more than 35 miles of backcountry trails, at Upper North Falls and in the off-leash area located within the South Falls Day Use Area.
The Mid-Willamette Valley is home to a number of off-leash dog parks that you’ll want to visit during your stay. Minto-Brown Island Park is a 1,000-plus acre natural park that boasts a 30-acre off-leash area for dogs. At Keizer Rapids Park, you’ll find a three-acre, fully fenced park with a separate area for smaller dogs.
Independence, Oregon, is home to a two-acre, fenced dog park with plenty of shade trees and a water station. In McMinnville, Oregon, your canine companion can enjoy the four-acre Riverside Drive Dog Park, where pups can run off leash.
You’ll see lots of furry companions at The Salem Saturday Market in downtown Salem, where you can shop for fresh produce, flowers and other handmade and locally-grown products every Saturday from April through October.
Many of the Mid-Valley’s beautiful wineries have their own canine “ambassadors” and don’t mind if you bring your well-behaved ones into their outdoor seating and tasting areas.
At Ankeny Vineyard in South Salem, enjoy a glass of wine and a slice of wood-fired pizza on the deck along with your canine.
Airlie Winery encourages visitors to bring a picnic basket and their canine companions to enjoy a glass of wine by the pond. If your dog loves water, you may want to bring a towel or two!
Become a member of the Pinot & Puppies Club at Keeler Estate Vineyard in Amity, Oregon. The wine club add-on for $5/wine allocation gets your doggie some treats, play dates and the chance to be featured on the website. A portion of each membership goes to Homeward Bound to help other cats and dogs in Yamhill County.
If you prefer breweries, stop by Rogue Farms in Independence. Leashed dogs are always welcome to visit the working-farm, as long as they keep their paws off the free-roaming chickens and turkeys! You can even purchase a Rogue Ales & Spirits dog collar in the tasting room.
If you want to grab a bite to eat with your pup in town, McMenamins Thompson Brewery & Public House in Salem allows pets in the front yard and picnic table areas.
Also in Salem, four-legged friends are permitted on Gilgamesh Brewing’s large outdoor patio. Pringle Creek flows through the backyard of the brewery and restaurant.
In Independence, The Three Legged Dog Public House - named in memory of the owners’ beloved dog Sully – has a seating area in front of the building, where pets can hang out with their owners.
If you and your pooch find yourself in Newberg, Oregon, try Jac’s Deli & Frozen Custard. The ‘50s-style gas station-turned-restaurant offers outdoor seating for visitors and pets.