Pet Friendly Music Festivals for You and Your Pup

The season is well underway, and we went searching for pet friendly music festivals that you and your pooch can enjoy together. We wish we could tell you that some of the major festivals are pet friendly, but unfortunately they are not (one website made a point of saying “even tiny, tiny dogs” were not allowed), though we can understand why. These festivals are often a mass of humanity and, coupled with the really loud music, probably not a safe or enjoyable experience for your dog.

pet-friendly Ashe County Bluegrass & Old Time Fiddlers Convention in Jefferson, North Carolina
You and your pup can enjoy music and dancing at the pet-friendly Ashe County Bluegrass & Old Time Fiddlers Convention in Jefferson, North Carolina

We were delighted to find, however, that many bluegrass and fiddler conventions are pet friendly. These are wonderful local multi-day get togethers that offer campsites and often include dancing, as well as tons of music (and the opportunity to sit in, if you’re a player). Coming up in July is the 49th Annual Ashe County Bluegrass & Old Time Fiddlers Convention in Jefferson, North Carolina, which this year will also showcase the work of local luthiers. In August don’t miss the 29th Annual Appalachian String Band Music Festival, a five-day gathering in Clifftop, West Virginia. There will be banjo and fiddle contests, storytelling, flatfoot dancing and square dancing, yoga, and nonstop music. September brings the Rockbridge Mountain Music & Dance Festival in Buena Vista, Virginia, and Old Time Weekend in Brunswick, Maryland.

These pet-friendly music festivals ask that you keep your pup on a 6-foot leash, not leave them unattended, and pick up after them. These are all open-air festivals, so consider bringing a canopy to keep you and your pet cool when the sun is beating down. Also, make sure you both stay hydrated: Don’t forget to bring a water bowl and several gallons of water.

dog in hippie costume at pet-friendly music festival
Second place winner of the Hippie Dog Costume Contest at pet-friendly Woofstock in 2017

An alternative to these pet-friendly music festivals are the multitude of dog-centric festivals around the country, many of which benefit local rescue groups or SPCAs. In August there is Woofstock on The Branford Green in Branford, Connecticut, which along with live music includes a Woofwalk and Hippie Dog Costume Contest. In September there is DoggieStock in North Bend, Washington and Woofstock Dog Festival in Hudson, Massachusetts. And in October don’t miss Barktoberfest in Kansas City, Kansas. That includes live music, puppet theater for the kids, a Dog & Jog 5K, free micro-chipping, doggy yoga, a Weiner Dog Race, and Doggy Fashion Show. And wherever you travel, make sure you rely on to find pet-friendly hotels and other lodgings that will welcome you all with open arms.

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