When the weather is nice (which, in lucky states like Hawaii, is pretty much all the time), it’s natural for people to want to spend time outdoors soaking up the sun and breathing in some fresh air. Nothing makes you feel more alive than enjoying the beauty of Mother Nature after spending way too much time indoors.
Well, just think about how our dogs must feel! Especially those that have been cooped up in the house all winter, only going outside for a quick walk around the block a couple times each day. For those pet owners who live in an apartment and don’t have the luxury of letting their pup frolic around in a spacious backyard this spring, Apartment Guide has compiled the following list of cities around the country that have amazing dog parks.
Coastal dwellers may argue whether a Midwestern lake (even a massive one!) constitutes a beach, but the dogs of Chicago couldn’t care less. Folks in this city love their time by the water and that might even go double for its four-legged residents.
Montrose Dog Beach was the city’s first legal off-leash dog beach (the other is Belmont Harbor) and gives pups and their owners plenty of space to run, dig, swim, fetch and get gloriously sandy with no fear of bringing that sand back to their respective apartments (well, not the pups, at least).
Dedicated dog-washing stations ensure that visitors can bathe their best friends before heading out to explore other fun parts of the Windy City. Most love to camp out and stay awhile —particularly when the weather is agreeable — so feel free to bring a beach or camping chair and your pup’s favorite waterproof fetch toy (as long as he or she doesn’t mind sharing!).
Nampa: Amity Dog Park
Six rolling acres make for loads of nature-infused fun at this Nampa haven for Idahoan pet owners, especially those with older dogs. Amity Dog Park’s small-dog area also welcomes senior pups who may find the rough play of the young guns a bit much for their weary bones. They’re welcome to watch the whippersnappers through the fence and remember their salad days with no fear of getting sucked into the otherwise-fun fray.
Fully fenced and loaded with expansive field-like areas, walking trails, access to drinking water and even a swimming pond, pups here love to interact with other dogs and humans, but even those who prefer space can find it. The park is so big that even when “crowded,” it never feels that way.
Welcome to Hawaii, our nation’s only rabies-free state and home of Honolulu’s Hawaii Kai Dog Park, where mountain views, ocean views, bright sun and a few shady benches are enjoyed by all who come.
Separate sections for large and small dogs (small is defined as 18 pounds and under) help to keep the play safe for everyone, and those with long-legged runners will absolutely love the wide-open space for their best friends to burn off pent-up energy.
Lots of parking means no circling for a spot, and there’s lots of fresh water to cool off play-spent pups after time in the sun.
Johns Creek: Newtown Dream Dog Park
This Atlanta-area one-acre property is one of the prettiest and most fantastical in the nation.
You’ll find Instagram-worthy photo ops as your dog crosses the bone bridge or runs through the fire hydrant-shaped sprinkler. They’ll be running around on wonderfully sanitary dog-friendly turf, as well, with loads of agility-building obstacles to navigate. If you’re in the Atlanta-area, it’s worth taking the trip with your furry friends up to Johns Creek for this dog park.
Think the humans are the only folks who laissez les bon temps rouler in New Orleans? Hardly! And the dogs at NOLA City Bark don’t even need a ball to do it.
This 4.6-acre park is a haven for canines in need of social time and exercise, with lots of room to roam. Lots of fresh water and washing stations to get Rover clean before packing him into the car make this expansive space a favorite for Crescent City dog lovers, who also love to socialize while keeping one eye on their pets for safety.
Read the complete list from Apartment Guide here.