A housesitting couple taking a Siberian Husky out for a ride on the boardwalk in Santa Monica, CA

Housesitting in Santa Monica

Introduction to doing a Housesit in Santa Monica, CA

​​If you’re interested in an exciting and unique way to experience Santa Monica, look no further than housesitting! During your stay, you’ll have the chance to live in one of the most beautiful beach towns in the world while enjoying all that it has to offer. Whether you’re looking for a short-term or long-term opportunity, this guide will teach you all the spots to check out, especially if you are taking care of a dog, too. So, if you’re up for an adventure, read on to learn more about our favorite dog-friendly discoveries while housesitting in Santa Monica.

Parks & Dog Parks

Dogs are allowed in Santa Monica on most beaches, except for the areas near the Venice Pier and Santa Monica Pier, which have posted signs prohibiting dogs. Dogs are also allowed on all of the city’s sidewalks and in all of its parks. In addition, many businesses in Santa Monica welcome dogs, including restaurants, cafes, shopping centers, and hotels. As a result, Santa Monica is a very dog-friendly city, and visitors will find it easy to enjoy all that the city has to offer with their furry companions by their side. Here are some of our favorites that welcome dogs.

Virginia Avenue Park

This 9.5 acre park in the Pico neighborhood has a large fenced-in area specifically for dogs, as well as plenty of space to run around and explore. There’s also a doggy water fountain to keep your pup hydrated and to cool off on hot days.  

Douglas Park

This off-leash dog park on Wilshire Blvd has a designated dog play area that’s perfect for socializing and playing fetch. It also has a beautiful walking trail if you want to explore the rest of the park with your four-legged friend. Make sure you connect with the pet owners to see if they have frequent dog parks they visit, and if the pooch is comfortable around other dogs of a certain size.

Herb Katz Dog Park

Located at Joslyn Park in Santa Monica, this 1.25- acre fenced in dog park includes a separate small animal area for your pup to play off leash with other canines of similar size and breed. 

Clover Park

Off Ocean Park Blvd in Santa Monica, this park offers lots of space, plenty of paths, and workshop stations for both you and your pooch. It has a great view of the Santa Monica airport and is perfect for pups with lots of energy and needs space to run around. 

Tongva Park

This newly renovated park, named for the indigenous Tongva people, is an urban oasis along the ocean. It features a playground, garden, fountains, picnic areas and restrooms for humans. There is a lovely dog park area with grassy knolls, trees, and plenty of room to run around.  

Pacific Street Dog Park

Pacific Street Dog Park features an acre of off-leash area with shaded seats and human & dog water fountains. 

Santa Monica Airport Dog Park 

As its name suggests, you can watch planes take off from the Santa Monica private airport while Fido runs around. This park has 4 acres with an off-leash area. 

Outdoor Coffee Houses

While Santa Monica is full of great coffee shops, not all of them are welcoming to our furry friends. Here are some of the best dog-friendly coffee shops in Santa Monica where you and your pup can relax and enjoy a cup of joe together!

Urth Caffe

This popular European-style cafe is a great place to enjoy a cup of coffee or tea with your pup. They offer a wide selection of organic teas and coffees,, as well as pastries and health-conscious bites. The outdoor seating area is perfect for people watching with your four-legged friend.

The Daily Pup

The Daily Pup is a haven for coffee-loving dogs and their owners. They offer an extensive range of drinks and treats for both you and your dog. The chicken, turkey and sweet potato items are a favorite among our four legged friends.

Dogtown Café

Dogtown Café is the perfect place to go after a day at the beach. A quick walk from the beach this sweet spot right along Main Street in Santa Monica has rad coffee and dog treats, plus water for your pup. This cafe features a quintessential SoCal vibe with the walls adorned with skateboards, paintings of famous surfers (and their dogs), as well as vintage signs. 

Caffe Luxxe

This European-style coffee shop along Montana Avenue in Santa Monica is a great place to enjoy a high quality cup of joe with your pup. They have a wide selection of coffee and tea, as well as pastries and sandwiches. Enjoy the outdoor patio for a respite with your sweet canine friend.  


Santa Monica is truly the perfect place to take your furry friend on a hike.  With miles of trails and parks located throughout the city, there’s no shortage of places for you and your pup to explore. Here are some of our favorite dog friendly hiking trails located in Santa Monica. So pack up your gear and bring your four-legged friend along for some fun!

The Mishe Mokwa Trail

This is a great hike for those who want to take their dog (on leash) on an adventure. This 2-mile path leads you through beautiful landscapes with diverse scenery including oak trees and sandstone rocks that reach over 3100 feet in height. You can follow markers along this easy route so there’s no need to worry about getting lost or becoming overheated by the sun during summertime hours – just make sure they’ve got plenty of water.  

The Solstice Canyon Loop 

This 3-mile hike is family friendly and has a few short, moderately difficult portions. Your pooch is welcome as long as they are on leash. You will see a beautiful babbling creek as well as a quaint waterfall with lush vegetation all along the way.  The elevation gain is about 800 feet and it features panoramic ocean views.

Will Rogers State Park

This historical state park includes trails that offer amazing views of Los Angeles and plenty of space for your pup to run around (though they must be on leash during the hike). It’s the starting point for one of the most difficult hikes in Santa Monica, Rustic Canyon Trail. If you’re looking for a more family-friendly hike with your leashed dog, Inspiration Point is a moderate 5.7 mi roundtrip hike on dirt that includes rock stairs and exposed roots, and has a mild elevation gain of just over 300 ft.  This Santa Monica hiking trail also allows visitors to see the Will Rogers ranch house and panoramic view of the surrounding Los Angeles area.

Although it is open year-round, be sure to check conditions before embarking, as the quality of the trail varies with the weather.

Outdoor Restaurants

Santa Monica is a beach town with a lot to offer visitors and locals alike. The sunny weather, the laid-back atmosphere, and the wealth of things to do make it a great destination for housesitters with pups. There are dozens of restaurants that welcome dogs on their patios, and many of them even offer special menus for four-legged diners. In no particular order, here are some of the best dog-friendly restaurants in Santa Monica.

Ashland Hills

Located along Main Street, this trendy beachside biergarten has delicious food and pet-friendly facilities. The open beer and wine bar on a reclaimed wood deck is surrounded by citrus trees and your pooch is welcome to join you while you eat. There is a menu specifically for dogs including full meals and pup-friendly ice-cream.   

Rosti Tuscan Kitchen

The mouth-watering smells of fresh herbs and garden vegetables fill the air as you walk into this inviting restaurant on Montana Ave. The menu features many vegan options, along with gluten free ones for those who need it! You can enjoy your meal on the patio where pets are more than welcome

The Albright

Head to The Albright on the Santa Monica Pier for some seafood that’ll make your mouth water. We love the grilled oysters, Dungeness crab and lobster, and the outdoor seating area is dog-friendly with plenty of water bowls. This is a local favorite since 1977 offering quality food in a family friendly setting.

The Misfit Bar

This hip gastropub located in downtown Santa Monica features creative comfort food, healthy fare, as well as handcrafted cocktails. Dogs are most welcome at outdoor tables.

Blue Plate Taco 

Located on Ocean Drive in the Shore Hotel, Blue Plate Taco offers casual Mexican fare with views of the Pacific ocean. This eatery offers a beach vibe where your dog can join you on the patio to take in the ocean views while you enjoy a locavore meal.  

Other Dog Friendly Adventures

The Santa Monica Pier is a great place for you and your furry friend to get some fresh air and enjoy some time away from the hustle of city life. A leash will ensure that they stay safe while exploring this renowned landmark, which offers an array of activities. The Third Street Promenade is also a great place to take your dog on any given day. Whether you’re window shopping or looking for some food, there are plenty of things to explore for both you and your canine friend. There are plenty of outdoor cafes and the atmosphere is always lively and fun.  


Santa Monica is a fun and adventurous city to explore with a dog. There are plenty of parks, restaurants, and shops that allow dogs inside. Housesitting in Santa Monica provides the perfect opportunity to get to know this wonderful city while taking care of your furry friend. Come join us in Southern California!