Ask Ali

Got a question about doggie life in Minneapolis or St. Paul? Odds are excellent that someone has already Asked Ali. Peruse these FAQs and see for yourself.

  • Q: What is Sidewalk Dog anyway?

    A: is THE online resource for all things dog in the Twin Cities. Looking for a dog park? We're here to help. Wanna find a dog-friendly restaurant patio? We've got that, too. Need a groomer? This is where you’ll find options. If you have a dog and you live in the Twin Cities, we're your peeps. (Got it? Good!)

  • Q. What's your favorite dog-friendly patio?

    A. This is very hard to answer. There are so many fabulous ones! A few at the top of my list include Lucia's, Barbette, Tin Fish and Sea Salt. Check out the reviews in our Directory to see what other readers think!

  • Q. Are you doing that Sushi with Your Poochie event again?

    A. How could we not? It's our signature event! Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter for more info and definitely stay tuned to our website, Facebook and Twitter pages for dates.

  • Q. I'd like a free Dogs Welcome decal for my business. How can I get one?

    A. So glad you asked. Click here.

  • Q. I've got an awesome dog-friendly business to tell you about! What's the best way to do that?

    A. We love hearing about dog-friendly businesses! Tell us via email us at Once we input your recommendation in our Directory, we hope you'll come back and review it.

  • Q. Are there any indoor dog parks?

    A. Sadly, no. We would love it if there were indoor parks (we live in Minnesota for dog’s sake) so if you hear of any, please let us know.

  • Q. Is there anywhere I can walk my dog indoors in the winter?

    A. If you're wondering about a mall, not that we know of. Here are some other suggestions: Playgroups (look up trainers in our Directory), and events (always check our Events page for things like Dog Day at the Dome, etc.).

  • Q: So, do you gals advocate any/all dogs going anywhere and everywhere?

    A: We really don't! We're all about responsible dog parenting here at Sidewalk Dog. Some people aren’t comfortable around dogs, some environments aren’t set up to accommodate them, and some dogs aren’t at their best around new people or unfamiliar situations. If your dog needs help with manners, behavior or socialization, take a look at the trainers in our Directory. And please only bring your dog to a dog-friendly event if you know she’ll be happy to be there!

  • Q. I know of a dog-friendly event and want to share it with your readers. Will you list it?

    A. Chances are good that, yes, we will! Submit your event here.

  • Q. I'm looking for a dog-friendly apartment. Know of any?

    A. More and more apartments are building their own off-leash play areas, such as dog-friendly Stone Arch Apartments in NE Minneapolis. (Want more options? Hopefully, our Dog-Friendly Housing section in the Directory will soon be filling up.) Please note: when contacting a potential dog-friendly landlord, be sure to inquire about breed restrictions and ask if they have a special potty area… Or better yet, an off-leash play area for your pup to romp.

  • Q. Can I bring my dog on the city bus and light rail?

    A. According to the Metro Transit website, if you have a service dog, he is welcome to be at your side on the bus and train. Other dogs (and all pets, for that matter) need to be kept in carriers.

  • Q. Can you give me the scoop on licenses and permits in Minneapolis and St. Paul?

    A. Sure! Here goes: Minneapolis requires all dogs be licensed, and they require a yearly permit for off-leash park use. Even if you don’t live in Minneapolis, if you want to use a city-sanctioned off-leash park there, you need a permit. Check this site for more details: St. Paul also requires that all dogs be licensed. Go to: for details. As for suburban dog park requirements, some want your dog to have a permit and some don’t care. To be on the safe side and avoid being fined, check with the specific park you wish to visit.

  • Q. My sister lives in ___ and would love to see Sidewalk Dog in her city. Do you have plans to launch in other markets?

    A. Yes, we do. Feel free to put us in touch with your sister if she wants to talk more about the happening dog scene where she lives, or how could be a part of it.

  • Q. I have an idea for a pet-related business and would love to get your thoughts on it. Does Sidewalk Dog do consulting?

    A. We sure do! Please zip us a note at for more information on our consult work.

  • Q. How did you get the idea for Sidewalk Dog?

    A. From a lovable lemon named Luc.

  • Q. Are you guys hiring?

    A. Not currently, but we always like to know about talented people who want to share their gifts! Who knows what the future might bring? Send us your resume and let us know what you'd like to do for us. And don't forget to tell us about your dog!

  • Q. I have a story idea. Should I tell you what it is or should I keep it a secret?

    A. Tell us! Drop us a note at

  • Q. How can I help you guys be even more awesome?

    A. You are so nice to ask! The kindest, most helpful thing anyone can do for us is spread the word. Tell your friends about Sidewalk Dog and support our advertisers. (And tell them you saw them on!)