5 National Parks That Will Welcome Your Dog
Posted by Dan Hinds on 25th May 2016
This year is the 100th birthday of the US National Park System. Sadly, most US Parks do not welcome your dog beyond parking lots and a few contained areas. However, we have noted 5 parks below that do have options for you and your furry friend to enjoy the great outdoors. Our friends at GoPetFriendly.com also has a great list of dog-friendly State Parks. If you know of any other gems, feel free to share below in the comments.
Shenandoah National Park, Virginia
Just 75 miles south west of Washington D.C., Shenandoah National Park
is a great place to explore nature with the whole family – dog
included. There are over 500 miles of trail with almost all open to
pets. Whether you want to do day hikes and picnic, or camp in the
backcountry, your options are open. The 200,000-acre national park is
home to breath-taking views, cascading waterfalls, sleepy woodland areas
full of deer, songbirds and plenty of fun.
Acadia National Park, Maine
Located along the rugged coast of Maine, Arcadia National Park is a
perfect place to bring your pup. It is home to the tallest mountain on
the east coast, 100 miles of hiking trails and two beautiful dog
friendly campgrounds. As long as you keep your
dog on a leash less than 6
feet long (standard rule across national parks) you can enjoy the
trails and old carriage roads, which are also great for biking. Only
reason it’s not number one on the list: Dogs are not allowed on the
beaches, but you can see our list of the
Top 5 Dog Friendly Beaches.
Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado
The Great Sand Dunes National Park in Mosca Colorado is actually made
up of a diverse landscape of forests, grasslands, wetlands, lakes, and
tundra, but is named for its spectacular sand dunes. The park is
entirely dog friendly so you and your pup can venture through the entire
park. It’s important Fido stay on a leash since there is copious
wildlife, but feel free to run, play, dig, and splash through the dunes
and the beautiful Medano Creek.
Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
The iconic Grand Canyon National Park is a site everyone should see –
even Rover. Dogs are required to be on a leash at all times and are
allowed on all trails above the rim, Mather Campground, Desert View
Campground, Trailer Village. If you want to hike down or take a mule
below the rim, also called the inner canyon, the park has a kennel where
your pup will be taken care of during your excursion.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Great Smoky Mountains National Park is both the most visited national
park and also possibly the most dog friendly. You can
hike with your dog through the ancient mountains on the Gatlinburg and the
Oconaluftee River Trail and take in the diverse flora and fauna. Dogs
are welcome to camp and picnic, making this a destination the whole
family can enjoy together.
Make sure you are prepared for hiking with your dog by reviewing our Tips for Hiking With Your Dog & our Dog Hiking Gear Checklist
Does My Dog Need a Dog Collar or a Harness?
Trying to decide which is better for your dog—a collar or a harness? The short answer is: You may need both. It really depends on the size and temperament of your dog and what it takes to maintain safe control of him.
Why Does My Dog Bark in the Car?
A dog barking in the backseat of the car can be a real nuisance—and even a hazard—for human drivers. But for dogs, barking is a way of communicating. In order to put the kibosh on all that annoying barking, we first need to understand why our furry companion is barking to begin with.
Tips for Hiking with Your Dog
Hiking combines all of your pup’s first loves: sniffing, exploring, and spending time with his favorite person in the world—you. You won’t find a more enthusiastic hiking companion anywhere.