Spin the compass, and Get OUT!


Best Bets for NW Adventure

It’s no secret, the Pacific Northwest is a mecca of amazing pet-friendly places. Wherever your whims take you this summer, these wonderful, Fido-friendly hot spots are fantastic options that promise great adventure and wonderful memories.

Head East

Bennington Properties — Sunriver

The Bennington family puts the love in vacationing with your dog. With classy dog-friendly homes and lots of fun activities, you’re sure to make memories that last a lifetime. Visit Sun River and enjoy Yappy Hour snacks and beverages while your pups romp and tussle with their “vacation friends.” Check out the Pet Parade during the Day celebrations. There’s also the American Cancer Society Bark for Life. Like biking? There bike trailer rentals for the dog!

Cooper Spur Mountain Resort — Mt. Hood

Visiting Cooper Spur Mountain Resort is a cozy getaway. The pet-friendly resort has all the amenities, plus barbeque grills, picnic areas, and an on-site restaurant. All of this surrounded by the majesty of Mt. Hood National Forest.

Head West  

Idyllic Oregon Beach Houses — Tierra Del Mar

If long quiet walks away from city crowds are to your liking, this will feel like a slice of dog-loving heaven. Both the Pier St. and Guardenia St. houses live up to the idyllic name, with accommodations for pooches and nine to ten people, all just a blink from the beach in a quiet neighborhood. Enjoy walks on the beach, watching seals and winged wildlife, while your dogs romp happily alongside.

Surfsand Resort — Cannon Beach

Fireplaces. Balconies. Haystack Rock. This resort has a lot to offer pet lovers, and half the rooms are pet friendly. Surfsand throws in dog-savvy extras like pet beds, towels and sheets, dishes, doggie bags, and placemats, and tasty treats whenever your pup pops into the lobby. In the fall, the resort hosts a dog show to raise money for the Clatsop County Animal Shelter.

Head North

Tranquil-A-Tree — White Salmon, WA

What? A tree house you can take your dog to? That’s exactly what you’ll find at Tranquil-A-Tree — a dog-friendly two-story log cabin suspended in the firs. Enjoy the pleasures of taking in the nature and beauty around you, hiking and birdwatching, relaxing in the hot tub, and more.

Sou’wester — Seaview, WA

Who hasn’t seen the vintage camp trailers that look like rolling toasters and thought how cool it would be to stay in one? Sou’wester Historic Lodge and Vintage Travel Trailer Resort invites you to check that one off your bucket list — with dog in tow. Keep the vintage vibe going by borrowing the resort’s bicycles or vinyl records, or indulge in a little pampering with massage and bodywork. Attractions include miles of beach, hiking, museums, lighthouses, and funky thrift stores.


Hotel Monaco — Downtown Portland

The uber dog-friendly (dare we say dog-crazy) Hotel Monaco in the heart of downtown actually employs a Director of Pet Relations to guarantee Fido gives them two paws up. Perks include no pet fees, no weight or size restrictions, and no limit to how many furry friends can join you. And how about a nightly dog-friendly wine reception? This is a staycation you’ll surely dig.

International Rose Test Garden — Portland

What good is it to live in the City of Roses without enjoying its signature flower? Set high in the hills above the city in Washington Park above the Oregon Zoo, visits to the garden are free and boast scenic views, rose variety, scents and colors beyond the imagination. Perfect for a picnic, and all of it dog friendly.

Lucky Labrador Brewing Company — Portland

Lucky Lab is a Portland fixture with its four locations and incredible dog-centric vibe. What more would you expect with a dog breed in the name? How about philanthropy? Yep, the Lucky Lab is into that too, presenting an annual dog wash to benefit DoveLewis Emergency Animal Hospital. When looking to enjoy a brew and bite, make it your summer goal to take the pup and visit dog-loving pubs on Hawthorne, Quimby, Capital Hwy and Killingsworth.

McMenamins — everywhere

This NW favorite has locations from Seattle to Eugene and in between, and the grounds and restaurant patios of many are dog friendly. Just west of Portland, the Grand Lodge in Forest Grove boasts lush, scenic grounds, and seasonal outdoor eating.  Just east of the city is pet-friendly Edgefield, with exquisite sprawling grounds. Each location offers craft beers and unique art that tells the stories of the area. 

The Oregon Garden — Silverton

Imagine 80 acres of lush botanical gardens, something for everyone, and all pet friendly. A short drive to Silverton takes you to this gardener’s paradise. Enjoy photography, geocaching, and learn about sustainable farming while strolling the fabulous grounds.

Hike the ‘Hood

If you’re looking to clock some miles under your hiking boots this summer, there are plenty of dog-friendly destinations close at hand. Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge (Sellwood) has miles of paved and unpaved hiking trails with views of the native forest, wetlands, and the Willamette River. Tryon Creek State Natural Area (Terwilliger Blvd) boasts bridges, a wetland boardwalk, shelters, exhibits, wildlife, and miles of multi-surface trails. Forest Park is a gem in the city, with more than 5,000 acres of vistas, views, and hiking galore.

Head OUT

Oregon State Parks

Most Oregon parks are pet friendly. Check website for information on day facilities, campgrounds, trailheads, and more. If you have time to book well in advance, consider a dog-friendly yurt or cabin at one of 22 campgrounds. Many activities are available at various locations, including hiking, wildflower viewing, beach walks, educational talks, biking, and swimming.

Learn more



Hike the ‘Hood — PortlandOregon.gov/parks











A Portland native, Kennedy Morgan has been around dogs her entire life – from the multitude of strays near the country home of her youth to the crew she calls her own now. Vegas, her retired agility superstar (Great Dane!) has been her primary inspiration for all things dog in the last decade, including her passion for writing.


Get ready for summer’s best NW escapades


This is the time of year when clear skies and warmer temperatures invite us to explore. But after months of slower, cooler days, we and our dogs need to pace ourselves.

Age and Ability

Consider the fitness level of both you and your best friend. Those who are active, healthy and relatively young will enjoy long hikes and big treks. For others, easier, shorter excursions are just as fun and beneficial (physically and mentally).


Consider terrain, plants, wildlife, and insects. Keep dogs on leash or voice control to avoid confrontations or injuries to themselves or wildlife. Especially keep small dogs close and be watchful of possible predators. It's also important to watch for poison oak or treacherous foxtails. The latter can cause severe ear problems in dogs, and if you venture into a tick zone, treat your pet in advance and do a thorough post-activity check — of both pooch and human.


Be prepped and equipped for the conditions. Depending on age, breed, color, and coat, the same trek might warrant a coat for one pup and sunscreen for another. If your activity buddy is a Pug, Boxer, or other short-nosed (brachycephalic) breed, watch for signs of labored breathing with exertion. Remember, too: walking on hot surfaces is dangerous for dogs as their pads can easily burn. 


Most parks and recreation spots require you to have your dog on leash, so a sturdy, comfortable lead is a must. Harnesses can be nice on hikes where enthusiasm might make your dog want to pull ahead.

If you’re really venturing out, pack some essentials for the unexpected. Nobody plans on getting lost or having an injured hiking partner, but it’s wise to prepare. Before you go, consider these items for your backpack:

•    Basic first-aid kit (most vets keep a handy content checklist)

•    Water and bowl (pet supplies and outdoor retailers stock handy pack-and-carry types)

•    Snacks for you and your dog

•    Emergency phone numbers (vet, emergency contacts)

•    Waste disposal bags

•    A bed sheet or blanket (if needed to carry an injured pet)

•    Rain poncho/parka (for canines and humans)

•    Emergency blanket

•    Backpack (medium and large dogs can often carry some gear themselves and share the burden, but be careful to not overload!)

•    GPS unit

•    Dog booties (available in styles for every activity)


If your pup will be swimming, even strong swimmers benefit from a good flotation vest. For hot-weather adventures, consider a cool coat to shield the dog from the harsh rays of the sun. . Wetting the cool coat also provides effective cooling.

One more possible backpack item is a dog-specific sports drink. Water enhancers like Go Dog and Active are meant to encourage dogs to drink while replenishing electrolytes and helping with stamina and muscle recovery.

Now that you’ve got your checklist and gear ready and checked twice for summer fun, get out there and enjoy! Share your photos with us at SpotMagazineNW on Facebook. 


K9 Power Go Dog * k9power.com/go-dog-hydration-electrolytes-active-dog-nutritional-supplement

WaterDog *  https://www.waterdogsupplements.com/product-page/waterdog-active

Ruffwear *  ruffwear.com


A Portland native, Kennedy Morgan has been around dogs her entire life – from the multitude of strays near the country home of her youth to the crew she calls her own now. Vegas, her retired agility superstar (Great Dane!) has been her primary inspiration for all things dog in the last decade, including her passion for writing.

Wish you were here!

Nearly 100 joyful vacationing dogs entered to win a 3-day stay at Sunriver’s beautiful Bennington Properties.

Meet our top 5!

NAME:  Doc

AGE/BREED:  He just turned 10, 7/18!  He's a yellow Labrador

STOMPING GROUND:  Doc lives and plays in Molalla, right next to the beautiful Ivor Davies Walking Trail, where he can be seen practically every evening with his mom.  He also spends a lot of time at grammy's 24-acre property in Beavercreek with Willy the goat, his pal Gunner (another yellow Lab) and all the chickens

PACK:  Mom Lizzy, Dad Gared, and brother Jake (a Boxer).  Also pals Gunner, Thor (black Lab) and Kali (Blue Heeler/Aussie)

LOVES/DOESN'T LOVE:  Doc's favorite things, while complete opposites, are going on walks and sleeping on the couch (which he has taken over as his own).  He can always be seen with a toy in his mouth, but don't try to take it, he's only showing you!  He doesn't love riding in the car, but once we reach the destination it's worth it!

SPECIAL NOTES:  Doc was adopted when he was 2 1/2 years old, and he and his mom have been inseparable ever since!  (Lizzy even has his pawprint tattooed on her...talk about true love!)

NAME:  Bella

AGE/BREED:  8 years young, Boxer


PACK:  Mom, Dad and a 6-year-old, two-legged little sister

LOVES:  Peanut butter, cheese, beach walks and naps

DOESN'T LOVE:  Cats or squirrels

SPECIAL NOTES:  Bella’s muzzle and eyebrows have turned an adorable silver gray ... but she still has lots of crazy Boxer energy to spare!

NAME:  Picasso (in flight), Ashleigh, Sasha

AGE/BREED:  Picasso is 2, Ashleigh is 5 and Sasha is 9.  All are Golden Retrievers


PACK:  Dog-mom Kimberley Hickey and Dad Erik Campen; Grandpa Robert Campen, Aunt Lynne McManus, Friends Star, Remi, Rhu and Oden

PICASSO LOVES:  Any ball thrown, swimming, hiking and jumping 

DOESN'T LOVE:  Fireworks and baths

ASHLEIGH LOVES:  Swimming, hiking and anything else, as long as it’s with Daddy (Erik)

DOESN'T LOVE:  Loud noises, especially fireworks

SASHA LOVES:  FOOD, hiking, swimming and belly rubs 

DOESN'T LOVE:  The diet she’s on right now

SPECIAL NOTES:  They travel yearly to Victoria, BC, the Oregon Coast, Mt. Hood and Central Oregon.  Picasso and Ashleigh are members of and compete regionally in Cascade Dockdogs. 

All three are Trained Truffle Hunting Dogs through NW Truffle Dogs.  Sasha has won a Truffle Hunting competition.

Sasha's job is Pack leader, matriarch and mentor in all things “Golden.”  Ashleigh's job:  The sensitive one.  Picks up on others’ emotions.  Would have been a great Therapy Dog.  Picasso's job:  Athlete and Class Clown, super energetic and great sense of humor.

NAME:  Tiger - Ready to Paddle!

AGE/BREED:  5 years


PACK:  Mom LaurelAnn, Dad Stephen, sister dog Lily, and sister felines Brownie May (actual sister), Ripley, Crash, and Coco.

LOVES: Lap sitting, sleeping on your head, spooning, hearing his dad's voice, 70s music, and enjoying the outdoors

DOESN'T LOVE:  Backfiring vehicles, fireworks, or when the girls gang up on him.

SPECIAL NOTES:  Tiger (and Brownie Mae) are both Katrina rescue kittens. Our neighbor brought their pregnant mama up from New Orleans. No wonder shrimp is their favorite food!

NAME:  Lotto

AGE/BREED:  8-year-old, Shihtzu-Pekingnese mix


PACK:  Mama, Alyssa Flores; Papa, Aaron Ambos and 4-year old cousin Bella Flores (all human); and Marley, a Boston Terrier, Capone a Chihuahua, and Dexter the Dachshund

LOVES/DOESN'T LOVE:  Lotto is smart and spoiled, and loves being with his human family and canine friends.  He loves doing tricks for his treats, and is very vocal (every day he tells us stories about what happened while he was at the groomer or while we were away at work).  Lotto loves children, and is very gentle.  He also loves sunbathing; however, Lotto is not a fan of animals (especially dogs) on TV.  His mama thinks it’s because he can't play with them!  Lotto also doesn't love long vacation car rides unless he gets to hang his head out of the window

SPECIAL NOTES:  He is such a lovable boy, and our only wish is we had more of him.  Although his vocal quality (known as the Pekingnese howl) is not something we always enjoy, he just wouldn't be Lotto without it.  

Coastal hotels donate to local humane societies

Hallmark Resorts, a Spot reader fav for coastal getaways, is now donating a portion of proceeds from pet fees to Oregon Coast rescue organizations.  Both the Lincoln and Clatsop County Animal Shelters will receive five percent of monies received from pet fees at Hallmark’s Newport and Cannon Beach resort locations.  “We see the love and care that our customers bestow on their pets when they stay with us, but unfortunately not every animal receives this kind of support.  Therefore, we make this gesture on behalf of our customers who value their pets as members of their family,” says Kirby Blankenship, vp of operations for Hallmark Inns Resorts.  

The resort has been pet-friendly since it opened its doors 60 years ago.  Dogs receive their own sheet and towel, a custom water bottle for trips to the beach, a frisbee and treats.  The resorts also offer wash-down stations and pet exercise areas.  Learn more at HallmarkInns.com.

The Dog Days of Summer

Ftr-SafetyWalkinWoods (511x640).jpg

When I moved to the Northwest decades ago, a wise old vet whispered in my ear:  “Work all summer and then when everyone’s home in late August, go out and play.”  He was revealing to me this area’s worst-kept secret — late summer/early fall is the best weather in our corner of the country.  While others are getting their kids ready for school and stowing their recreational gear, those in the know are grabbing their dogs and heading out for the woods, the waves, the wind, and the warmth of the best time of year. 

If you’re one of those lured outdoors with a furry friend, use caution for the pitfalls that can be encountered . . .

. . . AT WATER’S EDGE:  If going boating on a lake or just playing near the swift undertow of the ocean surf, remember to keep an eye on Rover.  Even if he can swim, invest in a pet life vest.  If hiking along mountain streams, remember that even if they appear cool and clear they can potentially harbor parasites.  If carrying your own water is not feasible, carry a good filter and determine ahead of time where you can access safe, clean drinking water for you and your dog.

IMPORTANT NOTE:  Warmth and slow-moving water contribute to the growth of algae, some of which can be the deadly “blue-green” type.  Blue-green algae contain potent toxins that, if ingested, can affect the nervous system and liver and can be rapidly FATAL.  Symptoms include vomiting, weakness, seizures, and paralysis.  There is no antidote so the best treatment is prevention!  Do not let dogs swim in, play in, or drink standing water with algal blooms.  Avoid all stagnant water and any water with a “green film” on top.  Postings of known affected areas can be found by typing “Harmful Algae Blooms Oregon” into your search engine.

. . . FORAGING IN THE FOREST:  Close encounters with both poisonous plants and dangerous wildlife are a possibility when trekking in the deep, dark woods.  Dogs, like people, can have nasty skin reactions to poison ivy, poison oak, or stinging nettles.  Be on the lookout for these plants, and if your pet has brushed up against some malicious underbrush, remove the plant oils from his/her coat with a degreasing soap such as Dawn dishwashing detergent along with plenty of water.

WOLVES AND COUGARS AND BEARS, OH MY!  While chances are slim for your pet to encounter these dangerous animals, they are likely to engage a more bloodthirsty (albeit smaller) creature:  the tick.  Every year, thousands of dogs are infected with dangerous tick–transmitted diseases such as ehrlichia and Lyme disease, and diagnoses are increasing annually.  To prevent these pests from spreading their “poison,” apply a flea and tick repellent recommended by your veterinarian, and reapply if your dog is immersed in water.

. . . WALKING IN FIELDS OF GOLD:  Hiking in the grasslands and canyons of the eastern part of our state offers a visual pleasure different from our local emerald scenery — along with different hazards.  When in high desert areas with rocky outcroppings, keep your animals close.  Keeping pets on leash isn’t binding a free spirit; it’s an act of concern that could save your pet’s life.  If hiking through “snake country” is a favorite activity, snake avoidance/aversion training can be worthy insurance in protecting your buddy from snake bite. 

OTHER ENCOUNTERS FAR A FIELD TO AVOID — also of the prickly kind — include porcupines (pulling quills from a furry face is painful and no fun), and foxtails (arrow-shaped grass seeds aka “awns”) can find their way in between toes, into eyes or ears, and can even embed anywhere along a dog’s soft body.  After walking through tall, dry grass, examine your dog closely and remove grass awns with tweezers. 

. . . OR JUST TRAIPSING DOWN YOUR GARDEN PATH:  Even the well-worn spaces in your own corner of the world can pose hazards to your hound.  Leaves and other yard debris build up, retain moisture, and with warm Indian Summer days, provide perfect conditions for mushrooms and mold toxins.  Dogs are delighted to find decaying material . . . but can come away severely ill with vomiting and tremors.  Toxic and non-toxic mushrooms can grow side-by-side; approximately 50-100 of the thousands of species that grow in the United States are toxic.  Signs of mushroom toxicity can range from mild vomiting and diarrhea to abdominal pain and, in severe cases, fatal liver failure.  The best way to avoid grief in the garden is to keep your yard free of “toadstools,” and remove leaves and dying plant material before they pile up.

Go forth into the glory that is fall in Pacific Northwest . . . and take care with your canine to avoid the fleas, fungus and other dangers still among us.

“. . . methinks the changeful glories,
The sport, the harvest cheer,
Make the autumnal season
The brightest of the year. “


Pawsful of fun and sand at Doggie Olympic Games


June 28 and 29, dogs and their human companions will take to the sand in Long Beach, WA for two days of fun and challenging competition.  This year’s Olympic games will kick off with an opening ceremony and lighting of the Olympic flame, and then the real fun begins!  Festivities include events such as Babe Ruth Obedience Baseball, the Luciano Pavarotti Commemorative Sing Off, Nadia Comaneci agility trials, and the always popular Peanut Butter Lick.  Pawprint-shaped medals will be awarded to top dogs in each event.  Various contests have entry fees; the games are free to those who want to cheer on the action.  Learn more at DoggieOlympicGames.com.

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles


Traveling Safely with your Pet  

For many people hitting the road this summer, the dilemma is not which sight to see but whether to take along their four-legged family members.  With all due respect to well-traveled iguanas, rabbits, or canaries, this question most often involves cats and dogs.  Before taking Fido or Fluffy along for the ride, ask yourself:

* Are both the mode of travel and the ultimate destination something your pet would enjoy?

* Is the destination pet-friendly?  For example, many wilderness sites can be downright hostile to companion animals. 

* Do you have room for the pet to travel comfortably?

* Does your pet get motion sickness (find out before starting a long trip!)?

Remember, an unhappy traveling companion of any kind can take the vacation out of a trip.

If you do decide to bring your buddy, plan ahead.  If traveling by air, contact the airline carrier weeks ahead for required health certificates and specifications for the pet carrier.

If the open road appeals to you, here are some helpful tips to prevent heartbreak when your co-pilot goes along for the ride:

Pets should not ride in the front seat of vehicles with airbags.  Airbags were designed for the safety of adult humans, and they can critically injure or kill an animal.

Pets should be restrained at all times inside moving vehicles.  An unrestrained pet can distract the driver, and in the event of an accident, become critically injured, potentially become a dangerous projectile, and/or escape from a vehicle.

Pets should never ride unrestrained on the outside of a vehicle, such as in the bed of a pickup. 

Pets can be restrained comfortably in a variety of ways:  inside carriers or behind vehicle barriers, or secured with pet seats, pet seat belts, or pet harnesses.  The safest place to secure your dog is in the middle of the back seat. 


Pets should not be left unattended inside vehicles for any length of time.  Changes in air temperature inside the vehicle, unattended food, and tasty tempting car upholstery all pose dangers to your pet. 

Pets should not ride with their heads outside vehicle windows.  Flying debris can damage their eyes, ears, face, or neck.

Keep an airtight container of pet food, a sealed jug of water, and a pet first aid kit inside your vehicle in case of emergencies.  Inside the kit, keep a copy of your pet’s medical record, your veterinarian’s phone number, and a recent photo.

Your pet should carry proper identification at all times (microchip, I.D. tag, or tattoo) when traveling by car. 

Traveling in an automobile from point A to point B should be comfortable, enjoyable, and above all, SAFE for all passengers, including our furry friends.


Bend named Dog-Friendliest City


Thanks to its abundance of dog-friendly businesses, restaurants, off-leash parks and recreation opportunities, Bend, Oregon has been named this year’s DogTown USA by Dog Fancy magazine.  Along with national recognition, the title comes with a hefty supply of donated dog food for the Humane Society of Central Oregon, and $5000 cash for DogPAC, a nonprofit dedicated to improving and expanding Bend’s off-leash play areas.  Doug La Placa, CEO of Visit Bend, said, “It’s an honor to have Bend recognized for all the hard work locals have done to make the city welcoming for dogs and their owners.”

Tillamook - lap up the cream of the coast!


Mention Tillamook and the image that pops into the minds of many Northwesterners is a block of perfectly orange cheese.  This coastal town is known for the cheese and ice cream factory that bears its name, but also for its virtually empty beaches, rolling sand dunes, historic lighthouses, salty sea towns and even a WWII blimp hangar turned museum.  Families with dogs needn’t leave the pups behind, as there’s plenty for furry ones, too . . . except the cheese factory.  But you can take cone to the car.



Tillamook is a fairly large Oceanside city, so there’s a decent array of restaurants and supermarkets for stocking a perfect picnic.  For those who like to splurge, there are more elegant eateries such as Roseanna’s CaféKendra’s Kitchen, and Pacific Restaurant.  For something off the beaten path, try La Tea Da for a quaint lunch or tea.  Mid-priced fare is also plentiful, with the Divine Burger Bistro (boasting gluten-free buns and Portobello mushroom burgers), Fat Dog PizzaRodeo Steakhouse & Grill (yes there’s sawdust on the floor), and the Blue Heron French Cheese Company offering wine tasting, deli sandwiches . . . and cheese.



In addition to the joys of simple beach play, this area boasts excellent hiking trails.  Munson Creek Falls, one of Oregon’s largest waterfalls at 266-feet, is just a half-mile stroll from the trailhead.  A longer 7-mile upper trail hike is just as magnificent, and gives even the four-legged a good jaunt.  The Kings Mountain Trail is a bit more challenging, but very worthwhile.  The nearly 2800-foot climb over three miles takes one to the spectacular view from the summit.  Another favorite activity here is kayaking, which is no surprise given the Tillamook County Water Trail has over 200 miles of estuaries, rivers and sloughs to explore.  In fact, the Kayak Tillamook rental company may allow your pup to sail along with you during private tours on some of the calmer lakes and sloughs.



Like most large cities along the Oregon coast, Tillamook has a sprawling feel; its shops and retail centers stretch along Highway 101.  Downtown Tillamook recently welcomed the newly renovated 2nd Street Public Market, an historic 1918 warehouse that was once home to the Tillamook County Creamery Association.  The Market offers clothing, crafts and handmade goods stores as well as a few restaurants. 



For home-away-from-home comfort where well-behaved dogs are always welcome, the Idyllic Beach Houses offer two cozy rentals (see Idyllic Home Away from Home).  Dog-friendly hotels and motels are abundant in this area, including the Inn at Pacific CityEdgewater Ocean Front CabinsSea Haven Motel and Guest House, and the Inn at Cape Kiwanda.  For a B & B atmosphere try Cape Lookout or the Powder Creek Ranch, both of which welcome dogs.



Salmon disease is a potentially fatal condition that has affected some dogs who ingested raw fish from Northwest inlets, streams, rivers and coastal waters.  Not just limited to salmon, the organism Neorickettsia helmonthoeca has been found in trout, sturgeon, sculpin, lamprey, and others.  The best prevention is to keep your dog leashed so she can’t get into something out of view.  If you suspect your pup has gotten into something potentially dangerous, contact your vet immediately – the disease is treatable if caught in time.  Symptoms may not appear for even a week, but can include fever, vomiting, diarrhea, nasal or eye discharge and depression.

Idyllic Home Away From Home


Tucked slightly off the beaten path of Highway 101 near the sea-weathered town of Pacific City, the Idyllic Beach House rental properties truly are idyllic for visitors seeking the comforts and convenience of home away from home.  The best part for families traveling with canine kin?  Pawed travelers are not only welcomed, but pampered with many dog-friendly features.

The two homes, long ago named “Idyllic Beach Houses,” are both fully equipped, each with a few unique amenities.  Guardenia House, for example, has a lovely fireplace, a detached “kid’s bunkhouse,” and master bedroom with vaulted ceiling, skylights and floor-to-ceiling picture windows overlooking a dense Sitka spruce forest. 

The two-story Pier Street House offers two adjoining bedrooms, a kid’s room, and a pull-out bed in the living room for larger groups.  This property has the bonus of a doggie door that pops into the laundry room – perfect for wiping off sandy paws.  While both properties are just a block from the beach, Pier Street House is closer, with beach access just a few steps away.

Newcomers to the Northwest may not be as familiar with Pacific City as with the more populated and attraction-laden towns of Newport, Lincoln City or Cannon Beach.  But for many, the quieter atmosphere, proximity to several state parks, and relatively empty beaches make the Pacific City area a favorite.  Surrounded by Bob Straub and Cape Kiwanda State parks, the Sand Lake Dunes and the Nestucca Bay National Wildlife Refuge, beachcombers, cyclists and hikers don’t lack for adventure here.  And if a night on the town is desired, it’s an easy 20-minute drive.


Exploring the “Three Capes Road Scenic Drive” is a perfect way to experience some of the hidden gems of this area.  The 40-mile loop starts in Pacific City and cruises through the funky little towns of Netarts, Oceanside, and what remains of Bay Ocean.  Once dreamed to be a western Atlantic City, unfortunately Bay Ocean was built on a land spit that over time returned to the sea. 

Dogs and humans both can stretch their legs at various points along the way, visiting the “Octopus Tree” and the “shortest lighthouse in Oregon” at Cape Meares Lighthouse & Wildlife Preserve.  Cape Lookout State Park offers a 2.5-mile trek to the beach, and Whalen Island County Park is a favorite with birdwatchers.  A great ending spot is back where you started — Cape Kiwanda in Pacific City. 

Kiwanda is the perfect place to seek starfish and seals, grab a bite and a brew at the award-winning Pelican Pub and Brewery, and of course, challenge your cohorts to a race up the massive 200-ft. sand dune and have a look around before getting your little kid on and running back down, full speed ahead. 


Of course, you may want to forget the car, grab the dogs, and just explore the coast on foot.  The beach houses’ locale grants this wish easily, and, according to the entries in the guest journal, the two-mile walk up the beach and to the estuary is a favorite with families with dogs (it’s fun to find the “traced paw” pictures of sleeping dogs drawn on the journal pages).  It seems this trek is guaranteed to send even the most active dog to dreamland at day’s end.

The beach house proprietors provide plenty of reading and gaming materials, plus booklets of dining and entertainment suggestions.  For those who love just lazing around, playing board games, reading or watching movies while soup simmers in the kitchen and the dog slumbers happily . . . you can do that, too.  The possibilities are endless, and isn’t that the best part of a getaway?

To learn more or reserve an Idyllic Beach House, visit IdyllicBeachHouse.com, call 503-662-5420, or email SusyW@IdyllicBeachHouse.com.