It's summer: time for al fresco dining.

For those with pooches, this can mean special feelings of guilt. Not only are you leaving the house, you're leaving to do something that a dog would totally dig - eating, around lots of people, who also are eating.

Because, when you're a dog, the only thing better than making your owner feel bad for selfishly enjoying a meal is visiting that guilt upon an entire patio full of diners.

Luckily, the Colorado Springs area has a wealth of restaurants and pubs with dog-friendly policies. In fact, most spots with patio, porch or sidewalk seating allow diners to bring their pooches, but be forewarned: Outdoor seating is limited and tables fill up quickly.

Here are a few:

- Nosh, at 121 S. Tejon St., welcomes pet-accompanied diners on its back patio, where you'll find seating for about 32 people at eight tables.

- The Ritz, 15 S. Tejon St., allows pets on its front patio, with seven tables and seating for 31.

- Smiley's Bakery & Cafe, 323 N. Tejon St. welcomes dogs at tables on the front patio, where there's seating for 12.

- Cheyenne Mountain Resort's Mountain View Restaurant, 3225 Broadmoor Valley Road, allows diners with dogs on its patio and deck, which seat up to 60 people.

- Tapateria, 2607 W. Colorado Ave., and its sister restaurant, Pizzeria Rustica, at 2527 W. Colorado Ave., have dog-friendly patios. Tapateria has seating for about 30; Pizzeria Rustica, for 53.

- Front Range Barbeque, 2330 W. Colorado Ave., welcomes diners with dogs both on its front porch, where there's seating for eight, and on its large, covered patio dining area, where there's seating for 63.

- The Stagecoach Inn, 702 Manitou Ave., Manitou Springs. This bar and restaurant allows pets on its veranda, which has seating for about 16 people.


Contact Stephanie Earls: 636-0364