Alison’s Top 3 Dog Parks in Dane County

With two energetic huskies at home, our family certainly knows the importance of taking our dogs out to run and play in wide open spaces. Thankfully, we live in one of the best places in the entire country for access to dog parks – in fact, did you know that Dane County was the first park system in the United States to develop an off-leash dog park program?! 

Each park has its own unique features and terrain; here are my top 3 favorites!

Prairie_Moraine_County_Park1.     Prairie Moraine County Park, Verona – on nearly 80 acres, this dog park is perfect if you have dogs that like to really run. It is a great location to get in some exercise as a human, too – the terrain has many different hiking paths with different levels of difficulty, and your dogs will love weaving in between the trees and up and down hills! The catch with this one is that if your dogs are known to run and not come back to check in – they can easily get lost in here as it is so huge!

Vikin_County_Park2.  Viking County Park/Dog Beach, Stoughton – on a warm, summer day, this park always tops the list for us because the dogs can take a dip in the Yahara downstream of Lake Kegonsa in between laps around the park! The terrain is nice and flat so you can always see where the dogs run to, and we often see many families playing catch with their dogs in and out of the water. Next to this park there is an additional on-lease trail along the Yahara where you will pass lots of fisherman and women, perfect for a nice day!

McFarland_Dog_Park3.  McFarland Dog Park – this one is not technically a part of the Dane County parks system, and it requires a separate pass, but it is worth it! You’ll take a boardwalk into the park from inside the gated area, and then you’ll be led by fantastic, mulched trails into the trees. This tree-lined park has plenty of shade, plus it backs up to a fantastic disc golf course. There are tunnels, ramps and other fun activities for the dogs, and if your pups get too dirty inside, there are indoor and outdoor dog wash stations (and bathrooms!). It's not too big but still has plenty of space for the dogs to roam – we love having this one so close to our house! 

Posted by Alison Crim on
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