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Portsmouth, New Hampshire is the port city on the seacoast at the mouth of the Piscataqua River that divides Maine from New Hampshire. It is the nation's third oldest city, founded in 1623. Today, it is a metropolitan hub for surrounding communities and is often on lists of best places to live. 

Located 10 miles south of Portsmouth in Stratham is the New Hampshire Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA). This non-profit society services over 121 communities in the Seacoast region. The mission of the organization is to save the lives of companion animals through rescue, rehabilitation, and adoptions, to eliminate animal cruelty and to advance the highest standards of animal welfare. The organization takes in over 2500 animals every year in their open admission and no-time-limit facility while they take every step to work toward a finding every animal a fur-ever home. 

There are a range of dog training classes - from puppies to older dogs. Through their Humane Education program, more than 8000 children a year are trained to show compassion toward animals. They investigate 600-800 cruelty or neglect cases a year. Since 1872, they have been coordinating with others to fight cruelty to animals, with a range of organizations and legislators. 

They are constantly working to extend their foundation through donations, community participation, fundraising events, and working with volunteers. Medical care includes spay and neutering and rabies clinics. They maintain the Rolling Hills Pet Cemetery as a place for owners to memorialize their beloved companions.

Upcoming Dog Friendly Events in Portsmouth

  • Admission $35.00
    Month February
    Duration 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM

    #1 Doggie Paddle Plunge

    Ready, set, run - splash, brrrrrr...and shake it off - all to help save lives for the New Hampshire SPCA at the Doggie Paddle Plunge! You can "freeze your tail off" for the sake of dogs at this February plunge into the Atlantic Ocean off of the seacoast of the nearby New Castle Great Island Common, just 3 miles from Portsmouth. If you don't like getting wet and cold, you can opt to be a virtual plunger. While you are off the leash for your great plunge, your pooch must wait on the beach.
    Dog friendly event?
  • Admission FREE!
    Duration Year-Round

    #2 South Mill Dog Pond Park

    This park has a double fenced area where dogs of all sizes can go off leash to play together. There is also an unfenced area at the west end of the pond where dogs can have more space to run and have adventures off the leash. Take your pooch down Pleasant Street and you will find the pond in the middle of the park. The pond has a natural beauty that you and your best friend can take in as you enjoy your time together. The Pierce Island nearby is a special treat but check the status of construction as this may impact your access with a pet.
    Dog friendly event?
  • Admission FREE!
    Duration Hours dependent u...

    #3 "Bone" Appetit and Shop 'til You Drop

    Portsmouth is a dog-friendly city with 20 restaurants where you can dine with your pet at outdoor tables. Hot Diggity Dawg! The range of food and libations is incredible - from gourmet restaurants to craft beer to Irish pub fare and beyond - there are plenty of choices for the foodie with Fido. You can wander from the waterfront to downtown, taking in the charming brick architecture.  The city is so dog-friendly that you will find many shops that welcome four-legged visitors as well. Some are even known for offering a treat and water bowl to your dog while you shop or enjoy your meal!
    Dog friendly event?
  • Admission $25.00
    Month June
    Duration 10:00 am - 3:00 pm

    #4 Paws Walk

    Known as the "furriest event in New Hampshire,  the Paws Walk is a fund-raising event for the New Hampshire Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The two-mile walk is held in June at the Stratham Hill Park. The event brings out over 2000 people and hundreds of dogs! More than just a walk in the "bark", the day is a celebration with vendors, food, demonstrations, and contests.  The build-a-pet-house contest brings out creative housing for hounds! If you raise $25.00, you will get a t-shirt. It's a fun day for a great "paws".
    Dog friendly event?
  • Admission $15.00
    Duration Thursdays and Sat...

    #5 Portsmouth Harbour Trail Tour

    The Portsmouth Harbour Trail Tour is a dog-friendly guided walk through 400 years of history! The tour will retrace the legends of the Sons of Liberty, the early merchants, beer barons, privateers, Royale Governors and legends of the waterfront. Guides will take you past the historic homes, trademark tugboats and working waterfront, Market Square with pet-friendly shops and scenic Prescott Park. This tour has been rated as "Best of New England Editor's Choice".
    Dog friendly event?
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