Dog Friendly Activities in Illinois

Don’t leave Fido in the hotel room when you’re on vacation. Get out and play! No matter where you’re headed in Illinois, we can point you towards the nearest off-leash dog park, the most popular dog beach, a really great hiking trail, and lots of other places to play with Fido.

Pet Friendly Montrose Dog Beach
Montrose Dog Beach The Montrose Dog Beach is Chicago's first legal off-leash beach. Located on the Northwest corner of Montrose Beach, this area is fenced and offers free dog waste bags and a dog-wash area. Montrose Dog Beach is open during all regular Chicago Park District hours, but morning hours are the most popular. Montrose Dog Beach is free, but DFA tags are required for all dogs, and those cost $5. See Details
Pet Friendly Gangsters and Ghosts Tours
Gangsters and Ghosts Tours 'Gangsters and Ghosts Tours' is a pet-friendly Airbnb Experience hosted by Stevie. You and Fido will venture out on a historically-based walking tour of Chicago's Loop Vice District, highlighting the gangsters, their crimes and deals, and ghost stories of the area's past. The experience lasts 2 hours and can accommodate up to 20 guests of all ages. Rates start at $27 per person. See Details
Whalon Lake Dog Park The Forest Preserve District of Will County's 8-acre fenced Whalon Lake Dog Park provides an exercise area where dogs can run free. The Dog Park also features a smaller 2.5-acre park for dogs under 30 pounds. A shelter and benches provide comfort for the canines' human companions. A permit is required for use of the Dog Park. Other amenities at Whalon Lake include multi-purpose trails, picnic shelters, and access to an 80-acre lake for boating and fishing. See Details
Prairie Wolf Dog Park This is a 44-acre, off-leash area that's fully fenced and includes a pond. There are always lots of dogs here to play with as well. See Details
Mercury's Canine Cruise *** Call ahead to find out about any temporary restrictions due to COVID-19. *** Dogs on boats? Yes! Bring your pooch on a leash and enjoy quality time with your dog while cruising on Chicago's waterways. Sit back, relax and soak in the city as you enjoy a lively narration of Chicago’s rich history and architectural marvels with dog-friendly highlights. Keep your dog on your lap, in a seat or on the deck. The dog cruise boat offers plenty of safe outdoor seating, water bowls and a special newspaper-lined restroom for your pet. Enjoy a great day out of doors with your favorite companion. Reserve your tickets online or at the ticket office, open daily at 8:30am. Tickets available online or dockside day-of. Adults: $37; Kids 5-15: $16; Kids under 5 are free; Dogs: $8; Groups of 20 or more, call (312) 332-1368.​ See Details
Katherine Legge Memorial Lodge Dog Park Your pet is welcome to run and play off-leash during designated hours at this fenced dog park, which includes a large grassy area with a small stream. See Details
Green Valley Forest Preserve There are actually 2 dog parks here. There is a large area for big dogs and a smaller separate area for small dogs. You have to have a permit to take your dog to these areas. There is water and a nice shaded bench. See Details
Shawnee National Forest The Shawnee National Forest covers more than 270,000 acres in parts of ten counties in southern Illinois. The National Forest Service and Illinois Department of Natural Resources maintain dozens of natural areas for recreational use and several wilderness areas. From the 90 foot Pomona Natural Bridge to the remains of a Mississippian Native American village at Millstone Bluff, there are hundreds of miles of hiking trails to choose from. Trails range in length from the 150+ mile River to River Trail that runs between Battery Rock on the Ohio River and Devil's Backbone on the Mississippi River, to the easy one-fourth mile Observation Trail at Garden of the Gods. Dogs must be leashed at all times. See Details
Moraine Dog Beach and Park To visit Moraine Dog Beach & Park you must register at Heller Nature Center, 2821 Ridge Road, with proof of license and rabies vaccination. See Details
Beck Lake Dog Park This massive, 44-acre fenced dog park includes wide open fields, trails, drinking fountains, training enclosures, and even a swimming pond. Annual membership and key fob are required. See Details
Nordstrom Nordstrom welcomes dogs of any size inside. See Details
Belmont Harbor Beach Belmont Harbor has a small fenced beach for dogs. You can bring Fido with you to enjoy the sand and have a paddle. This pet-friendly area is popular among visitors to the area who want to enjoy a beach with their dog. See Details
Mayslake Forest Preserve Dog Park This large, fenced off-leash dog park is renowned for its friendly community of pet-owners. Includes covered picnic tables, mulch ground cover, and portable restroom. See Details
Batavia Bark Park Batavia Bark Park features three acres of fully-fenced space for you pup to enjoy. Other features include a pavilion, shade trees, and a small beach area. This is a free dog park and no permit for use is needed. See Details
Winnemac Park Pets are welcome to play on-leash at this Chicago park packed with fun recreational facilities. See Details
Rural King Rural King is dog friendly! Leashed pets are allowed inside this store selling farm supplies, home goods, and hunting gear plus the cashiers give treats at the register. Rural King also offers reasonable prices on many dog products. Rural King has a dog-friendly sign on the door letting folks know dogs are welcome. See Details
Valley Line Trail (Skokie Line Trail) The Valley Line Trail (Skokie Line Trail) is one of 1600 rail-trails supported by Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, a nonprofit organization that is working to create a nationwide network of trails from former rail lines and connecting corridors. Previously an unused railroad corridor, this "rail-trail" is now a great place to walk Fido in Chicago! The map below shows a parking area with convenient access to the Valley Line Trail (Skokie Line Trail). Rails-to-Trails Conservancy has generously provided map data for this trail to Bring Fido for informational purposes only. For more detailed trail information, please visit TrailLink.com. See Details
SpringBrook Prairie Dog Park Dogs with valid Forest Preserve District permits can enjoy Springbrook Prairie’s off-leash area at the 83rd Street trailhead. Owners must have their dogs’ permits in their possession when in the off-leash area. Applications for annual and daily permits are available through Visitor Services at (630) 933-7248 weekdays between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. Rules for the off-leash area are posted at the preserve. Dogs must be on leashes no greater than 10 feet in length in all other areas of the preserve, including the parking lots See Details
The Chi-Town Showdown Scavenger Hunt 'The Chi-Town Showdown Scavenger Hunt' is a pet-friendly Airbnb Experience hosted by Kat & Alan. Discover Chicago on a scavenger hunt with your pooch. First, receive instructions and warm up for the event. Then, depart with your dog on a tour of the sights and sounds of Chi-town. Take part in fun activities and complete clues along the way. The experience lasts 2 hours and can accommodate up to 30 guests of all ages. Rates start at $22 per person. See Details
Challenger Playlot Dog Park at Gill Park Dogs will love to run and play off-leash at this fenced dog-friendly area inside Challenger Playlot Park. See Details
Grant Park Dog Park Bring your pet to play off-leash in this 18,000 square-foot fenced dog park in Chicago's famous Grant Park. You will need to get yourself a permit to use the park and have the required vaccinations to do this. See Details
Wiggly Field This public dog park boasts a fenced-in area, doggie water fountains, waste bags, and a double gate to prevent escapes. Wiggly Field is located within Noethling Playlot Park, so there's plenty of places to explore nearby too. See Details
Starved Rock State Park Starved Rock State Park is full of hiking trails that wind through canyons, amazing views, and waterfalls. Leashed dogs are welcome to hike through the park as well as 2 of the net by parks in the area. There's fishing, bbq, pavilions, and playgrounds. See Details
White Oak Park This park includes a beautiful 1-mile paved trail around a lake where you're likely to spot all sorts of birds. Pets are welcome if leashed, though bring water. See Details