Rachel Nania and Natalie Tomlin, wtop.com
WASHINGTON - Washingtonians love their dogs.
According to a 2012 survey from the American Veterinary Medical Association, 50.3 percent of Maryland residents own a pet and 21.9 percent of D.C. residents own a pet -- and 36.5 percent of all pet owners own dogs.
That makes for a lot of fury friends in the area. And with so many things to do in and around the District, why should you leave your four-legged family member at home? Surprisingly, you don't have to.
Here are some unconventional activities you can enjoy with your dog.
Cheers! Take your hound to happy hour
After a long day of work, you socialize with your friends and unwind at happy hour. So why can't your dog do the same? Hotel Monaco in Alexandria hosts a doggy "Yappy Hour" in the hotel's courtyard on Tuesday and Thursday evenings from April through October. While you sip on something refreshing, your pup is welcomed with fresh water, doggie treats and canine companionship. Make sure you bring a leash.
Concert series: Enjoy some music with your mutt
Going to an outdoor performance is a must in D.C. And this summer, you can take your dog along, as well. The Fort Reno Summer Concert Series, held each Monday night in the summer at Fort Reno Park in Northwest D.C., is a dog-friendly live music event.
Down dog: Do yoga with your dog
You aren't the only one who needs to practice your downward dog pose. Dog yoga, otherwise known as "doga," is gaining traction across the nation and throughout the region. Pure Prana's regular doga class is no longer on the schedule, due to the relocation of the class' teacher, but dog owners interested in introducing their pups to the practice can do so through workshops and special events. In conjunction with the Washington Humane Society, Tranquil Space hosts a doga event every May in Rose Park, and studios, such as Sun & Moon in Arlington, offer workshops for yoga with your dog. Be on the lookout for more doga classes as yoga-loving dog owners catch on to this trend.
Take your dog on an espionage tour
In a city filled with secrets, why not have your dog help to sniff out the truth? While you may not be able to enjoy the company of your dog at D.C.'s Spy Museum, you can take your pup on a spy walking tour of Capitol Hill. "Paws for Spies" is a special two-hour tour from Spies of Washington Tour.
Cruise with your canine
The best view of the nation's capital and its surrounding neighborhoods is from the Potomac. Take in the beauty of the area on a river cruise with your dog. Potomac Riverboat Company offers special dog cruises, which run for 40 minutes around the Alexandria Seaport. Dogs ride free, but adults pay $15.
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