Pets at National Parks

Dog and Ranger

Thinking of taking your dog with you on a visit to a national park? You should be aware that national parks have very specific regulations regarding pets at these parks.

Most state and national parks allow pets but most require that they be restrained and some don’t allow them on the hiking trails or on the beaches. An unrestrained dog may harm the wildlife in the park. Conversely, wild animals may react aggressively to a dog they perceive as a threat. Dogs and cats retain a primitive instinct to mark their territories with scent and can spread diseases to other wildlife. On narrow trails, they may trample the vegetation. Regulations are looser for guide dogs and hearing-assistance dogs, but many parks require these animals to be registered when entering the park.

According to DogFriendly.com the best U.S. parks to take your dog to are Grand Canyon National Park, Acadia National Park, Shenandoah National Park, Yosemite National Park and North Cascades National Park. In these parks, dogs are allowed on many of the hiking trails.

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