When and where to take your furry friends 

Dog Days at the Beach

Your best friend needs a vacation, too

Jonathan Boncek

Your best friend needs a vacation, too

Folly Beach Dogs aren't allowed on the beach at Folly between May 1 and Sept. 30 from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. During all other hours, they can run on the sand and frolic in the surf, but they must be leashed. However, certain exemptions exist for members of the Folly Island Dog Owners Club. For more information, visit follyfido.com.

Sullivan's Island Sullivan's welcomes dogs, whether you're local or visiting, as long as you have a dog permit. These permits are mandatory, and you can snag one at Sullivan's Island Town Hall (2050-B Middle St., 843-883-3198). For residents, they're $25, and for visitors, they're $35. But not so fast, dawg. Just because you've got a permit doesn't mean you can take Rex to the beach any ole time you like. Dogs can roam off-leash from 5-10 a.m. from May 1-Sept. 30 . From 6 p.m.-5 a.m., they must be leashed, but no dogs are allowed on the beach from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

Isle of Palms Over on the IOP, your precious pup can run around off leash April 1 through Sept. 14, but only from 5-8 a.m. Dogs are welcome at all other times, but they must be on a leash. And while all IOP residents must have a license for their dogs, visitors do not.

Dog-friendly dining

For hungry Folly Beachers, dogs are welcome at the Lost Dog Café (106 W. Huron Ave., 843-588-9669). Lost Dog is open for breakfast and lunch, and they serve shrimp and grits, breakfast burritos, french toast, biscuits and gravy, salads, and more. The covered patio offers plenty of shade for Clifford to get a big red cool down. Woody's Pizza (39 Center St., 843-588-0088) is another dog-friendly Folly spot, and they're open for lunch and dinner. They have a large variety of salads, subs, and pizza, and the outdoor dining atmosphere is a great spot for Spot.

If you've got your dog in tow and you're hungry on Sullivan's, Poe's Tavern (2210 Middle St., 843-883-0083) is a good place for you. They're known for their frightfully good burgers with Edgar Allan Poe-inspired names, but good luck getting outdoor dining in the summer — it's a local favorite and always packed. Dunleavy's Pub (2213 Middle St., 843-883-9646) is another dog-friendly place, and they have great patio dining, too.

For many, Morgan Creek Grill (80 41st Ave., 843-886-8980) is Isle of Palm's premier dog-friendly eatery. They're located just five minutes from Wild Dunes, and they're open for brunch, lunch, dinner, and happy hour.

For in-town dog-friendly dining, check out Red's Ice House on Shem Creek (98 Church St., 843-388-0003), Parson Jack's in West Ashley (3417-G Shelby Ray Court, 843-769-7775), Dog and Duck in Mt. Pleasant (1117 Park West Blvd., 843-388-6127 and 624 Long Point Road, 843-881-3056), and Fuel in downtown (211 Rutledge Ave., 843-737-5959).

Dog-friendly Lodging

On Folly Beach, there are tons of places to stay that welcome pets (for a fee, of course). As far as hotels go, check out Tides (1 Center St., 843-588-6464). They allow up to two dogs per room for a fee of $85. A little research revealed that your best bet is to rent a private property if you're dead set on bringing Fido; they're more accommodating to your pet's needs, but most still charge fees anywhere from $50-$150.

The lodging for pupsters on Sullivan's is more restricted, mostly because there aren't really any hotels. Some private rentals, whether houses or condos, accept dogs, but there aren't as many dog-friendly places to rent.

As far as dog-friendly lodging goes, Isle of Palms is just as good, if not better, than Folly. Wild Dunes (5757 Palm Blvd., 888-778-1876) allows up to two dogs for a fee of $75, and there are endless private rentals that allow pets. Again, it's up to the owner of the property, so when you're planning a vacation, ask your agent to help you find that perfect dog-friendly home away from home.

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