This blog delivers reasons why Chicago is THE destination for people on the daily, but we've been noticeably lacking in making its case to our quadripedal friends. Well, that ends today. With almost 700 parks, enormous green spaces and plenty of running trails, Chicago is a dog's paradise.
For the Athletic Dog: Lincoln Park
If you have a dog that loves tennis balls and Frisbees, he'll be in fetch heaven in Lincoln Park. In the park's north end, you'll find the largest dog-designated space on Montrose and Simonds, close to Montrose Harbor. This is a grassy area, perfect for tiring out even the most active of puppies. With a large, open space, you will leave happy and exhausted, a treat for you and your dog.
For the Beach Babe: Montrose Dog Beach
For dogs that can't understand why cats hate being wet, there's Montrose Beach. Featuring a sandy spot on the beach's north end dedicated to dogs, this place is a can't-miss spot for pups who want to enjoy some sun and fun on Lake Michigan.
For the Ritzy Dog: The Park at Lakeshore East
You're a canine with discerning taste. You never leave the house without your rhinestone-encrusted collar, and honestly, why should you? The Lakeshore East park just north of Randolph and east of Columbus is an oasis of doggie decadence. This doggie park has trees, a large run, and plenty of activities for you in this exclusive canine retreat. It also has a doggie drinking fountain because hydration is key for good coat care.
For the Dog That's Always Exploring: Chicago Canine Cruise
Beginning July 7 and running through September, Mercury Skyline Cruiseline invites dogs and their owners aboard for a guided cruise down the Chicago River and around Lake Michigan. The crew provides treats, water bowls and newspaper-lined bathrooms for comfortable dog environment. This tour highlights dog-friendly hotels, restaurants, dog parks and fire hydrants. If you think your pup enjoys the wind of an open passenger side window, wait until you see their face when they get a fresh air gust off of Lake Michigan.
For the Four-Legged Foodie: Joe's Bar on Weed Street
Eating outside is a Chicago summer tradition and some establishments welcome your pet. Joe's Bar on Weed Street does a weekly Doggy Happy Hour on their patio with a dog-themed film screening. Many downtown and neighborhood spots (such as Scoozi in River North, Big Star in Wicker Park, and Uncommon Ground in Lakeview) are also very welcoming, often times providing dog bowls or treats.
Dog-Friendly Chicago Quick Facts
Chicago has 18 official "Off-Leash Areas" so finding one nearby is easy. For a full list of dog parks in Chicago, click here.
Chicago has an 18-mile-long path that's anchored by parks and Lake Michigan. It's perfect for dogs. Navy Pier is also a dog-friendly and incredibly scenic place to go walking. Please note that leashes are required at both locations.
For our list of dog-friendly hotels, click here.
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