Jacksonville is more than just a bustling big city with beautiful oceanfront views. It’s home to thousands of dog lovers and has several active chapters of the American Kennel Club, including the Dog Fanciers Association, the Collie Club, and the Toy Dog Club. With all the advocacy in the community, it’s no surprise that pets are welcome all over, including at eateries, popular area attractions, parks, events, and festivals. There are even numerous senior living communities in the area that are pet-friendly and offer comfortable living arrangements for retirees and their furry family members.
Jacksonville has hundreds of communities specifically for seniors in and around the city. Some cater to retirees who want to live an independent and active lifestyle while others provide more in-depth care options for seniors who need the additional help with daily medical needs. No matter what you’re searching for, there are top-rated communities that welcome your pet into their family.
A great example is Brookdale Atrium Way. Their extensive campus is designed to allow seniors to age in place and to provide you with whatever care you’ll need along the way. They have apartments where seniors can live independently in a vacation property type setting, enjoying amenities like housekeeping and laundry services, transportation around town, and restaurant-style dining. Brookdale also offers assisted living, skilled nursing, rehabilitative care, and respite care options should you need them over time. Their independent living apartments are pet-friendly, and their beautifully landscaped campus complete with walking paths, a courtyard and garden, porches, and screened lanais are a perfect place to take your dog for a leisurely stroll. Additional amenities include perks like an onsite cafe and bistro, a fishing pond, billiards, a fitness center, arts and crafts studio, and a campus theater to give you lots of entertainment options without ever needing to leave the community.
Jacksonville has great weather year-round, which makes it easy to enjoy a bite to eat with your dog. Many of the city’s hundreds of restaurants welcome pets on their outdoor patio areas, and some even offer extra perks for your pup. If you’re craving a sweet treat, stop by Bruster’s Real Ice Cream on San Jose Blvd. While you enjoy a scoop of your favorite, your dog can enjoy one of their complimentary doggy sundaes complete with crumbled dog bone treats on top. If you’re craving something more substantial, check out Uptown Kitchen and Bar in historic Springfield. What was once one of the best breakfast joints in town got a makeover a few years back, and now offers delicious southern-style food for breakfast, lunch, brunch, and dinner. Their spacious outdoor patio is pet-friendly, and servers will bring a bowl of water for your dog upon request.
There are events and festivals happening all the time in Jacksonville, and many of them are pet-focused. One area favorite every February is the Pawdi Gras Pet Parade and Festival. A fundraiser for First Coast No More Homeless Pets, the annual event features contests, a parade, live music, and dozens of vendors and has upwards of 5,000 people and their pets who come out to celebrate.
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