Canada can confidently call itself a pet-friendly country, with 60% of Canadians owning either a dog or a cat. More often than not, our pets become an integral part of the family and, naturally, we want to include them in our daily activities, our outings and our travels.
Looking for the paw-fect place to take your four-legged friend for a walk, a visit or a vacation? Here are some of the most beautiful places in to visit with your dog, from coast to coast!
Stanley Park, Vancouver, BC
Yes, dogs are allowed in Vancouver's Stanley Park, but there are some rules to follow. There are several designated on-leash areas in the park, including the seawall and numerous trails. However, you'll find an off-leash area near the Brockton Oval and the tennis courts. You must keep your dog under control at all times and clean up after them, of course, as well as ensuring that dogs do not disturb or injure wildlife in the park.
It’s important to note that during summer, dogs are not permitted on certain beaches in Stanley Park, including Second Beach and Third Beach. However, there are several other dog-friendly beaches in Vancouver, including Spanish Banks, Kitsilano Beach and English Bay Beach.
There’s also WildPlay Element Parks, a park with zip lines, obstacle courses, and adventure courses that welcome dogs in Victoria and Nanaimo.
Bowmont Park, Calgary, Alberta
Known for its beautiful natural scenery, hiking and biking trails, and diverse wildlife, Bowmont Park is the place to bring your pup in Calgary. The 164-acre park is located along the Bow River and features stunning views, trails, ponds, and a river where dogs can swim and play.
The first off-leash area is located in the eastern part of the park, just west of the baseball diamond and soccer fields. This area is fully fenced and includes a small parking lot, picnic tables, and waste disposal stations.
The second off-leash area is located in the western part of the park, near the parking lot at the end of Silver Springs Gate NW. This area is not fully fenced, but it is clearly marked with signs indicating where dogs are allowed off-leash.
It's important to note that even in the off-leash areas, dog owners are still responsible for their pet's behaviour and must keep their dogs under control and supervise them at all times.
Last but not least: Banff National Park! It requires no introduction as it’s one of Canada's best-known landmarks. This beautiful national park allows dogs on designated trails and campgrounds. There are also dog-friendly accommodations in the area.
Wascana Centre, Regina, Saskatchewan
This park offers a variety of amenities and activities for dogs and their owners, including trails, open spaces, and a designated off-leash area. Use the designated off-leash area: Wascana Centre has a designated off-leash area located on the west side of the park, near the Science Centre. The off-leash area is fully fenced and includes waste disposal stations and a water source for dogs.
Discover Wascana Centre and its 11 kilometres of trails that wind through the park and offer stunning views of Wascana Lake and the surrounding area. Dogs are allowed on the trails, but must be on a leash at all times. Enjoy the other amenities, including picnic areas, playgrounds, and a marina. Dogs are welcome in these areas as long as they are on a leash and under control. There are plenty of dog-friendly spots in Regina.
Overall, Wascana Centre is a great place to visit with your dog, offering plenty of opportunities for exercise and relaxation in a beautiful natural setting.
And if you’re in Saskatoon, you can’t miss Meewasin Valley. It is pet-friendly and always bustling with people walking or playing with their pets. There are many hiking trails and scenic river valley paths to explore.
The Cranberry Flats Conservation Area is another popular place to spend time with your dog. It's located just outside of Saskatoon.
Kilcona Park, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Kilcona Park is a popular destination for pet parents, offering a variety of amenities and activities for dogs and their owners. It has a large off-leash area located near the north end of the park, just off McIvor Avenue. It is fully fenced and has separate sections for small and large dogs. A water source and waste disposal stations are also available in the off-leash area.
The dog park in this area includes agility equipment, a fenced area for small dogs and waste disposal stations. Dogs must be on a leash when entering and exiting the dog park.
More than 10 kilometres of trails wind through the park's forests, meadows and along the park's lake. Dogs are allowed on the trails, but must be leashed. The trails offer a great opportunity to explore the natural beauty of the park and get some exercise with your dog.
And honourable mention to The Forks Market! This Winnipeg attraction features outdoor markets, entertainment, and dining areas… and dogs are allowed (outside).
Millennium Trail, Whitehorse, Yukon
The Millennium Trail in Whitehorse, Yukon is a popular destination for dog owners as the trail offers a scenic route for walking, running, or biking with your furry friend.
If you decide to go, make sure to bring water for your dog to drink, especially on hot days. There are no water stations along the trail.
Dogs must be kept on a leash at all times on the Millennium Trail. This is for the safety of your dog and other trail users. There are many benches, picnic tables, and scenic viewpoints where you can take a break with your dog and enjoy the view. This scenic trail offers views of the city and surrounding mountains.
Cameron Falls, Northwest Territories
Cameron Falls Trail offers an absolutely stunning scenery. The trails offer stunning views of the Cameron Falls, as well as the surrounding forest and wildlife. You and your dog can enjoy the natural beauty of the area and take in the peaceful sounds of the waterfall.
Hiking Experience: The trail is quite moderate, which means both you and your dog can enjoy the ride. It can take as short as about 1.5 hours to complete the shortest route (3.5 km in length.)
This trail is absolutely dog-friendly, so you can bring your furry friend along for the adventure. However, it is important to keep your dog on a leash and pick up after them to help preserve the natural environment.
If you want to venture further where the off-leash is permitted, the area surrounding the Cameron Falls Trail offers a variety of outdoor recreational activities, such as fishing, canoeing, and camping. You and your dog can make a weekend of it and explore all the outdoor activities the area has to offer.
It’s truly a great place to visit with your dog for a fun outdoor adventure and an opportunity to enjoy the natural beauty of the Northwest Territories. There’s also the Yellowknife Dog Park and so many other great spots to bring your furry friend in the NWT.
Algonquin Provincial Park, Ontario
There is nothing quite like it… Algonquin Provincial Park, located in Southeastern Ontario, is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers. And the best part is: it’s totally dog-friendly. Dogs are allowed on designated trails and campgrounds in this stunning park. Hiking trails range from easy to challenging. You and your dog can explore the park's stunning natural beauty and enjoy the fresh air and exercise together.
The park is home to a wide range of wildlife, including moose, black bears, and beavers. You and your dog can enjoy the opportunity to observe these fascinating creatures in their natural habitat.
Algonquin Provincial Park offers many lakes and waterways that are ideal for canoeing and kayaking. You can take your dog with you for a scenic paddle on the water.
You and your dog can even spend the night under the stars and enjoy the tranquility of the park's natural surroundings with the many dog-friendly campgrounds.
Algonquin Provincial Park has a designated dog beach where your furry friend can splash around and swim in the water. A great way to cool off on a hot summer day and bond with your pup.
And if ever you’re downtown Toronto, you can always visit High Park with your doggo. This large park in Toronto is a must and offers an off-leash dog area, trails, and a pond for dogs to swim in.
Sylvia Grinnell Park, Iqaluit, Nunavut
If you’re ever in Iqaluit, the Sylvia Grinnell Territorial Park offers hiking trails and a river where dogs can swim. You can take in the many scenic views of the city and bay. Truly beautiful.
The park also offers picnic areas and many benches where you can take a break from hiking and enjoy a peaceful moment in nature. As well as a range of activities for both exercise and relaxation for both you and your furry friend.
Overall, it’s a great destination for an outdoor adventure with your dog. Nunavut is a very pet-friendly province.
Signal Hill, St. John’s, Newfoundland
Located in St. John’s Newfoundland, Signal Hill National Historic Site allows dogs on designated trails in this popular historic site. It offers stunning views of the coastline and St. John's harbour.
On both the North Head Trail and the Signal Hill Trail, dogs must be kept on a leash at all times. These trails are perfect for you and your dog to enjoy a scenic walk while taking in the beautiful views.
Plus, Signal Hill is an important historic and strategic landmark, in both military and communications history. Bring your dog to explore the site and learn about its rich history.
Visiting Signal Hill with your dog is a great opportunity for socialization. Your dog can interact with other dogs on the trail, which can help to improve their social skills and confidence.
Mont Royal Park, Montreal, Quebec
Quebec is known to offer many great destinations for outdoor adventure and city exploration with your dog. Montreal just started welcoming dogs in the subway. Whether you're looking for scenic hiking trails, historic attractions, or pet-friendly accommodations and restaurants, Quebec has something to offer you and your furry friend.
Mont Royal Park is a large park in Montreal at the top of, you guessed it, Mont Royal! It has an off-leash dog area, a pond and some scenic trails. You can enjoy many impromptu picnic areas or cross a few Mounties. Sundays are all about music with the famous Tam-Tams du Mont-Royal during the summer months.
If you decide to explore outside of Montreal, Mont-Tremblant National Park is located in the Laurentians and offers many outdoor activities, including hiking, camping, and swimming. Dogs are welcome on the trails but must be kept on a leash.
There is also the Parc du Bic, located directly on the St. Lawrence River, offering stunning views of the coast and a range of outdoor activities, including hiking, camping, and kayaking. Dogs are welcome on the trails but must be kept on a leash.
There is also the beautiful Old Quebec, an historic district in Quebec city with many dog-friendly hotels. This area offers a range of pet-friendly accommodations, restaurants, and shops. You and your dog can enjoy exploring the charming streets and historic buildings.
Irving Nature Park, Saint John, New Brunswick
Irving Nature Park is a coastal park in Saint John that features a designated dog-friendly trail where your FFF (favourite furry friend) can run free and off-leash while you enjoy the natural beauty of the surroundings.
There’s also a gorgeous beach area where your dog can play in the water chasing sticks, and other amenities such as picnic areas, hiking trails, and wildlife viewing areas, making it a great place for a day trip with your dog. Overall, Irving Nature Park is a beautiful and well-maintained park that offers plenty of opportunities for outdoor recreation and relaxation, making it a perfect place to visit with your furry friend.
Cabot Trail, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia
The Cabot Trail is a scenic drive in Cape Breton Island, that passes through forests, mountains and offers the most beautiful coastline views. Dogs are allowed on some of the hiking trails in the area, and on many of the scenic drives and overlooks, including the Cabot Trail.
One of the best places along the trail to bring your pup is Ingonish Beach. This beautiful sandy beach is pet-friendly, so your dog can run and play in the sand and water.
Or you can explore Cheticamp River, a great place to go for a swim with your dog on a hot summer day. The river has many dog-friendly areas where you can swim and play with your furry friend.
If you end up near Halifax, you definitely need to stop by Point Pleasant Park, a large park that has it all: trails, beaches, and an off-leash dog area.
Confederation Trail, Prince Edward Island
The Confederation Trail is a 449 km trail that welcomes dogs and runs across the whole island. And it’s dog-friendly. You can walk or bike along the trail. Dogs must be kept on a leash, and owners should be prepared to clean up after their pets.
The Confederation Trail passes through so many beautiful coves, beaches, towns and villages. Just the perfect opportunity for you and your dog to explore and experience the local culture and the great food of PEI. Many restaurants and coffee shops welcome dogs.
So much more to explore
Canada is huge, and these are just a few of the places you can visit with your dog as a family. So, if none of these pet-friendly places are on your itinerary, a quick online search will help you find the perfect place to go on a date with your best friend.
You can also find and join dog groups on Facebook and ask pet owners in your area where they like to bring their pups! Or check your local city hall website to find one in your area.
And don’t forget to bring a hearty snack for your pup, wherever you go.