I'd never considered that day-tripping isn't always possible when you have to leave your best friend at home, until I adopted Cooper. A day-trip didn't take much of a plan "BC" (Before Cooper); I'd head out without considering how long I'd be gone--sometimes it would be a last-minute decision to even spend the night, but "AC" changed all that. Heading out without Cooper would be like going to the prom in last year's dress--it is simply not done.
Coastal Maine, all things considered, is a great place to take your dog. Maine law prevents you from taking a dog into a restaurant unless it is a Service, Therapy or Emotional Support dog, but allows them in an outside dining area--that's a grey area that is up to the restaurant owner, but many shoppes, attractions and destinations are happy to welcome Fido.
Maine State Parks are all open to dogs on leashes, and Camden Hills State Park is a great destination. Mt. Battie is the main attraction and you can choose to hike it or drive to the top where there is a stone tower for 360-degree views of Penobscot Bay and Camden, which sits at the base. Dogs love the open space, shade and gentle breezes as much as owners admire the views. As common sense dictates, never leave your dog unattended and clean up after it. There are plenty of trash receptacles, but bring your own bag (BYOB).
You can take your dog on sailing trips aboard the Lively Lady II or the Schooner Olad at the public wharf downtown, Merryspring Nature Park on Conway Road or book shopping at the Owl & Turtle Bookstore and stay at the beautiful Lord Camden Inn, the Camden Riverhouse, the Grand Harbor Inn, or the Country Inn. Full water dishes can be found in front of many of the shops on Main Street, which is a very dog-friendly destination in itself. Leashed dogs are always welcome on ferry boats that go to outlying island communities.
My first summer trip will be to Camden, and for the first time since he was adopted, Cooper will be going with me. I can hardly wait until he sees the ducks at the Library park!