Indianapolis is way kinder to canines than it was just a decade ago—just look at the plethora of places you can now bring your pooch. Though local health codes keep dogs outside of restaurants, they’re increasingly welcome in outdoor-seating areas (call ahead if you aren’t sure). Most businesses just ask your dog be well-behaved and on a leash. Who’s ready to go for a walk?
Bars & Breweries
110 E. New York St., 317-939-6916
Your dog can lie at your feet as you tap away at the 50-plus old-school video games in this arcade/bar. They’re allowed pretty much anywhere on the premises, indoors and out. Canines also receive “wag bags” containing a treat, doggy bags, and a ball.
1125 E. Brookside Ave., 317-602-8386
Calm, friendly canine companions are allowed anywhere in the taproom, where dog-friendly snacks from neighboring City Dogs Grocery are handed out.
11671 Lantern Rd., Fishers, 317-343-0200
During the warm months, Four Day Ray, which is situated in Fishers’s Nickel Plate District, welcomes canines at its outdoor beer garden. There’s even a selection of branded toys for them—well, you—to purchase.
702 Virginia Ave., 317-653-1806
The patio is totally down with dogs during warm months. “On a good summer day, we have from five to 10 dogs there,” says founder Travis Barnes. “It can get pretty busy.” Guests can avail themselves of water and dog treats.
140 S. College Ave., 317-522-0251
You can’t bring a minor to Metazoa’s tasting room, but your pets (including brave cats) are welcome. There’s even a dog park where Fido can frolic while you sip Puppy Slumber Party stout, knowing that five percent of all Metazoa profits go to animal and wildlife causes. More exotic pets can come, too, though management asks that you call ahead before bringing your python or emu.
345 S. Bowers St., Whitestown, 317-769-3880
Treat your dog to a night on the town at this craft-beer-and-barbecue depot tucked among farms and fields northwest of downtown. Housed in the former Whitestown high school gym, the brewery welcomes pooches under the patio’s strands of twinkling lights during milder months (the taproom is human-only). So while you’re sipping a malt-and-maize Moonlite cream ale, your furry friend can kick back around the fire pit.
5547 Bonna Ave., 317-929-1297
This artsy little coffee shop sits next to the Irvington leg of the Pennsy Trail, guaranteeing that it sees its share of tired canines (and their owners). Coal Yard offers a comfy patio area for dogs, along with plenty of fresh water, dog treats, Pup Cup ice cream, and more. “We even do an ice cream cone with whipped cream and a dog biscuit on top,” says co-owner Michelle Roberts.
1101 E. 16th St., 317-550-5685
This Kennedy-King neighborhood coffee bar is famous for its luxurious latte art, but you might snap an even better Instagram shot on the 60-seat, often pet-filled patio, which boasts a pergola, umbrella-topped tables, free Wi-Fi, and concerts in the less-shivery seasons. Whether you’re bundled up for a morning run on the Monon Trail or venturing out for a sunset stroll, Coat Check Coffee’s Old Northside outpost has you covered, from a biscuit sandwich with jalapeño pepper jam to smoky drinks like the Picador, a daiquiri derivative with mezcal. Insiders know the pastry paradise also bakes buttery almond croissants that’ll ensure your pooch won’t be the only one panting.
118 S. Audubon Rd., 317-820-3662
Mug hops carry fare directly to your car, from extra-creamy mac and cheese to baskets of batter-dipped fries buried under barbecue-sauced pulled pork, though a colossal pasture-raised breaded pork tenderloin monopolizes the menu (and your mouth). The 50-seat patio is the perfect place for your dog to slurp a pup cup (a small scoop of vanilla soft-serve), and there are usually dog bones for well-mannered tail-waggers.
6523 Ferguson St., 317-252-5920
This Broad Ripple spot half a block from the Monon Trail offers canine visitors an exclusive patio where they can relax with their owners. And though there’s not a “dog menu” per se, you can get an unseasoned grilled chicken breast, burger patty, or salmon filet upon request. Servers have been known to bring treats for particularly good boys.
You can’t avail yourselves of this three-location eatery’s Pooch Menu right now, because it’s only available on the patio. But come spring, your dog can dine on chopped bacon or chicken breast for $3, or a combination of the two for $6. All meals come with a bowl of water “and a head scratch,” with a portion of the proceeds donated to local Humane Societies.
2126 S. Sherman Dr., 317-786-1638
Neon is the name of the game at this 1950s diner nestled on the city’s near-southeast side. A crew of carhops satisfies your cravings for sundaes, onion rings, and creamy homemade root beer floats—and the curbside service means you don’t have to ditch your dog before diving in.
823 Westfield Blvd., 317-259-0765
This Martha Hoover joint offers year-round dog service on its enclosed front porch. There’s no set menu, but you’re free to order custom dishes for your canine companion, including eggs or a hamburger with no bun or toppings. “It’s really whatever you want,” says one staffer. “Or whatever the dog wants.”
333 S. Delaware St., 317-624-8200
This art-infused hotel is great for human-and-hound exploring: It’s nestled amid the young-adult playscape CityWay. Upon check-in, your furry friend gets a goodie bag with a treat from Nutty Mutt Bakery—often an apple-pie bone—and a vibrant Alexander-branded bandanna (it’s luck of the draw on color, but the orange ones are especially snazzy). While the hotel charges an additional $25 for a pet-friendly room, for up to two dogs weighing up to 50 pounds, it’s a one-time fee—all the more reason to stretch your one-night getaway into a three-day vacay.
123 S. Illinois St., 317-737-1600
Fair warning: If you treat your humble hound to a weekend here, you might leave with a doggy diva. From no upcharge for pet-friendly digs to on-the-house dog beds and food-and-water bowls, the boutique hotel next door to St. Elmo Steak House checks all the boxes. If, after all that pampering, your canine gets cabin fever, there’s a grassy square only a block away.
2721 E. 86th St., 463-221-2200
The only work your pooch will be putting in at this Prohibition-chic pad will be figuring out how to lure you back down to the lobby to score another of the complimentary Milk-Bone treats sitting out for the snarfing. And owners have every incentive to capture their dogs’ most Instagrammable capering, carousing, and chowing: The two-and-a-half-year-old northside nest regularly hosts contests with prizes for the cutest canine photos (a National Dog Day giveaway last August garnered winners a free night and pet package that included an Ironworks bandanna and gourmet treat). If the hotel knows a dog will be checking in, she’ll be greeted by a personal pamper pack, which includes a water bowl and Ironworks-branded treat from Carmel’s A Dog Bakery.
Illustrations by Chantal Bennett.