This Daycare is Perfect for People Who Love their Dogs — and Love Convenience

Picking a daycare and boarding facility can be stressful: Will your dog be safe? Loved? And have fun, too? We’re here to help with a series highlighting the pup-lovingest daycares and boarding facilities in the Twin Cities and beyond.

Downtown Dogs
Busy pet parents, rejoice: Downtown Dogs is a convenience-lover’s dream. It’s easily accessible to and from downtown Minneapolis, and they have one of the widest ranges of pick-up and drop-off hours we’ve seen. Pair these features with their “dogs are free to be dogs” attitude, and you’ve got one great spot for Spot.

Give The Doggies What They (And You) Want
Let’s start with that location: Downtown Dogs is one block South of International Market Square near the Farmers Market, and it couldn’t be easier to swing in and out if you’re near Minnie. Their hours (open before 7 am on weekdays and until 9 pm daily) make life easy for the hectic lives of us humans. Sweetening the deal: no advanced registration is required for daycare.

Once your pup is checked in, he’ll enjoy spending time with the people of Downtown Dogs. The place is packed with serious dog lovers, highly trained with over 50 years of combined experience. “We specialize in having nurturing, energetic staff. We all take the time to connect with your pet, because we take care of each dog as if she’s our own. This is more than just a job to us,” owner Ralph Bernstein tells us. Their spacious, open-air playrooms are pawfect for a day of romping, and you can watch it all go down on webcams.

Downtown Dogs prides itself on being a steward of not just your pets, but the greater community. This includes environmentally friendly practices (think cushy floor mats made of recycled tires that would otherwise wind up in landfills), community engagement (like volunteering on boards for the City of Minneapolis and allying with the LGBT community), and donating to and volunteering with local rescues. “By supporting Downtown Dogs you are doing so much more than helping your own dog. You are helping homeless dogs, the environment, and your local economy,” Ralph says.


Big play spaces, happy faces.

The Hooman Perspective
The reviews are in: Norma T. writes, “[We were] impressed at how well they cared for our Border Collie, Zoe. She did not eat some of her food, so they called and offered to give her wet food — she got her appetite back. [It’s] clean and there’s plenty of room for dogs to play. One of their employees knew we were worried about Zoe not eating, so she went far and beyond to take a video and pics to send to our family to reassure us. Thank you Downtown Dogs, we now found our forever place to send Zoe and feel good about going on vacation.”

Another reviewer, Arianna P., says, ” Absolutely LOVE Downtown Dogs and so do Bart and Daisy. Bart has separation anxiety and cannot stay home alone, so I am so lucky to have a place where I can take him and know that he will have fun and be in good hands. I also love that they have a separate area for the less rambunctious dogs so my little senior Daisy can just sit and observe when she goes to daycare with Bart. Amazing staff — amazing place!”

"I heard you like convenience." - Truman

“I heard you like convenience.” – Truman, Downtown Dogs client

The Quick Sniff

  • Contact info: Downtown Dogs, 612-374-3647, email
  • Location: 821 2nd Ave N, Minneapolis (map)
  • Hours: M-F 6:45am-9pm; Sa-Su 8am-9pm
  • Starting rate (daycare): $30
  • Starting rate (boarding): $32
  • Advanced reservations required: Reservations are required for boarding but not daycare
  • Breed restrictions: No 
  • Spay/neuter required: Yes
  • Test day required: No, but it is recommended
  • Amenities: Air conditioning, dog beds in kennels, foster dogs accepted, hourly pricing, one-on-one cuddle time, indoor play area, report cards, separate play areas for dogs of different temperaments, webcams, webcam phone app
  • Services: Bathing, grooming
  • Nonprofit ruv: Downtown Dogs is a proud supporter of Underdog Rescue, Upper Midwest Great Dane Rescue, and more.

Your dog will be yapping with happiness when he hears you’re headed to Downtown Dogs. (Don’t forget to tell ’em Sidewalk Dog sent you!)

IMG_0074This spotlight was sponsored by Downtown Dogs, one of the pup-lovingest spots in town. Current and former customers are encouraged to submit reviews via their Sidewalk Dog directory listing. (Know or own a daycare or boarding biz we should feature? Doo tell!) 

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