Dogs need regular exercise and socialization with other dogs and humans to be at their happiest, and one way to give your dog both at once is by taking them to the dog park. Here in Ottawa, we’re lucky to be spoiled with a wide range of parks that suit every need, allowing dogs young and old, adventurous and reserved, friendly and shy to have a great time. I’ve been exploring a lot of different places in and around Ottawa with my own dog, and with the dogs of clients, and I combined that experience with suggestions from a number of people in the city to create this list of your best options. Enjoy!
BEST OFF LEASH DOG PARKS IN OTTAWA
For many owners and their dogs, nothing beats a great off leash dog park for a fun day out. Whether you’re looking for a big open space to play fetch, some sand to dig in, forested trees to explore or water to cool down in on those hot summer days, you’ll find what you’re looking for here in Ottawa. Off leash dog parks can be a great way to give your pup some freedom to burn off some energy, while you enjoy the beauty of nature. We’ve built up a list of the best off leash dog parks in Ottawa for you to enjoy. For a comprehensive list made by the city check out their website and the easier to use Google maps made by reddit user /u/SergeantAlPowell.
1. CONROY PIT
Conroy Rd and Hunt Club,
Ottawa, Ontario K1T 3S4
This is one of the first places I checked out when I moved here and I find it’s a great place to go dog walking in Ottawa. It’s not so much a dog park as many different interwinding trails. There’s one large path that loops around and it takes around 30 minutes to do the loop but I love following my dogs lead and going a different way each time. Dogs are used to following us when on leash around the city so it’s nice for them to make the decisions about what smell to chase. Google maps will take you to a small parking lot (NCC Greenbelt P17) but there is also access from a residential area and Athans Park (just make sure to leash your dog up at this entrance because this part is on leash only), keep heading North West from these entrances and you’ll find the off leash part through the gorgeous forest paths.
2. BRUCE PIT
175 Cedarview Rd,
Nepean, ON K2H 6A5
This is a very popular dog park in Ottawa and for good reason. There is a large parking lot and a couple of different entrances to start your walk. The main entrance has a large garbage, an outhouse and a community board that usually hosts a lot of lost keys, boots, collars and tags. If you keep following the main entrance you come to a large opening which has benches, some plastic chairs, and some communal water dishes and bottles. If you have some time and come here often, feel free to bring one home, fill it up and bring it back next time you’re at the park. Keep walking past the large, open area and it forks into a couple of different routes through some tree shaded areas, some sandy areas that dogs like to dig in and the occasional puddle in the summer. There used to be a fence that separated the off leash and on leash areas but unfortunately a tornado destroyed much of the on leash forested area. There have been countless volunteers and NCC employees working to clean the park up and it is still one of the best places to take your pup. Thank you to all who helped and are continuing to help.
3. AYLMER DOG PARK
250 Avenue du Bois-Franc,
Gatineau, QC J9J 2E4
While not technically Ottawa, this dog park is across the river in Quebec, but definitely worth the drive. Located near the Boucher Forest, this dog park is full of great pups and people. There’s one gravel loop around a little sunken grassy area for the dogs to roam and play. The loop generally takes about 10-15 mins to do but most people walk it a couple of times, stop and socialize with other dog people or duck into the forest for some exploring. There’s plenty of garbages, benches and some clean water to cool off in the summer.
4. DAVID BARTLETT PARK IN MANOTICK
5201 McLean Crescent,
Manotick, ON K4M 1G2
From their website: David Bartlett Park is 35 acres of beautiful green space located less than 30 minutes from downtown Ottawa in the Village of Manotick, Ontario. The park is designated as an Off-Leash facility by the City of Ottawa. The Park offers a large area of open space, perfect for dogs of all sizes to play, wrestle, or practice their retrieving skills with balls or sticks; trails for those who are less inclined to socialize (no judgment here); and water access for the swimmers among us. Bordered by the Rideau River, residential homes and the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority, the Park offers something for every dog – and dog walker – to enjoy.
5. STANLEY PARK (IN OTTAWA!)
183 Stanley Ave,
Ottawa, ON K1M 1P2
Someone laughed and told me this was in Vancouver when I suggested they check “Stanley Park” out, but there’s also one in Ottawa! It’s a small park and there’s some construction going on but in the summer there’s access to the water for the pups to cool down and splash around. Maybe you’ll get lucky and see some swans there too. There’s lots of parking on Stanley Ave or in the residential streets North East of the park. It also leads to great walking trails along the River. Head North West from the park to walk along the pretty Union Street bridge to both Maple Island and Green Island. From there you can walk to Bordeleau Park, which brings us to the next off-leash area.
6. BORDELEAU PARK
349 Bruyère St
Ottawa, ON K1N 5G9
Although this park is close to King Edward, if you have a water-loving dog, they won’t want to head towards the busy street because they’ll be too busy swimming in the Rideau River. There’s street parking on Cathart that runs along the park but please make sure your pup has great recall or keep them on leash until you reach the walking path parallel to the river to avoid squirrel chasing towards King Edward.
7. BREWER POND DOG PARK
100 Brewer Way,
Ottawa, ON K1S 5T1
South East of the baseball diamonds at Brewer’s park, going towards the river, there is a small area where dogs are allowed off leash. It’s a beautiful area, with access to swimming in the pond or in the Rideau River. Bronson Avenue is fairly close so make sure your pup has good recall. While you’re there, check out the really cool street art at House of Paint under the Bronson Bridge, north of the Rideau River.
8. APOLLO CRATER PARK
600 Apollo Way
Ottawa, ON, CA, K1E 3E85
I think this may be named after an impact crater on the moon, the bowl-shaped cavity in the ground is grassed where dogs can wrestle around, or follow their humans around the path that circles it. There are some trees to provide some shaded areas here as well. Look at how happy that dog is to be there!
9. QUEEN JULIANA PARK
870 Carling Ave,
Ottawa, ON K1A 0Z2
For some reason, this doesn’t show up in any searches, or even the official City of Ottawa Dog Park Map but this one is right by my place so I go here often. The signs say it’s off leash and it is never busy. The only thing is the park is sandwiched between 2 busy roads so your dog must have excellent recall. I would encourage the city to put a fence near the roads but the lot is set to become a new hospital in the next 5 years. As a bonus though, you can cross Prince of Wales Drive south of this park and take a stroll in the Arboretum (which will be featured in our on-leash dog walking blog).
BEST FENCED DOG PARKS IN OTTAWA
Having your dog off-leash is a great way to exercise and socialize your dog, but for some owners, it can be quite nerve-racking to be in an open area without fences! If your dog is not great at coming to you when you call them or they are still young and learning, fenced dog parks can be a great place to work on recall without worrying about your dog taking off. Here are the best fenced dog parks in and around Ottawa, Ontario.
1. SHEFFORD ROAD DOG PARK
849 Shefford Rd,
Gloucester, Ontario K1J 8H9
Ottawa’s newest fenced dog park – it’s partially grass and partially gravel and seems to be well maintained. It’s behind the Blair Animal Hospital so if anything happens to your pouch, you have easy access to help! The park also has a special waste receptacle, which sees waste slide down a chute and into the ground, to cut down on smell and to prevent overflowing.
2. HAMPTON PARK DOG RUN
512 Island Park Dr,
Ottawa, Ontario K1Y 0B4￼
Just off of Island Park Dr, there is a fully fenced portion of the *fully off-leash area of Hampton Park. If you park off of Island Park Dr, you can walk towards the 417 Hwy to reach the fenced in area of the dog park, or you can park at Pet Value (1309 Carling Ave) and walk under the 417 to access the dog run. Once you are feeling good about Fido’s recall, try them in the *off-leash open area of Hampton Park. The treed area is very nice, and it provides a lot of shade during those hot summer days!
*Edit: It has come to my attention that the open area in Hampton Park is in fact not off-leash. Please keep this in mind for other dog owners that may be trying to walk their reactive/fearful dog on leash.
3. ROCKLAND DOG PARK
746 Poupart Rd,
Rockland, Ontario K4K 1K9￼
This dog park is about a half hour drive East from downtown Ottawa but it’s worth the drive! It is much larger compared to other dog parks in the city and it’s gorgeous. It is also amazing if you want to go for a long backcountry walk in the woods with your furry friend. There should be so many more places like this built into the vision of cities.
4. LANSDOWNE DOG PARK
1525 Princess Patricia Way
Ottawa, Ontario K1S 3W7
Lansdowne Dog Park is a small but beautiful park close to the Rideau canal and the many shops and restaurants of Lansdowne. It’s very well kept and seems like there is an endless supply of water for the pups on a hot day. Head here on Sunday’s year-round for the Lansdowne Farmers Market at Aberdeen square and you can browse vendors that grow, make, and bake everything that they offer from within 100 km of the City of Ottawa. You can get your favourite local grains, meats, cheeses, fruits and veggies, locally produced baked goods and sweets, as well as exceptional artisan crafts and jewelry year round at our Lansdowne location. Most importantly, dogs are welcome!
Parking along Bank Street is available, free of charge, on Sundays. Underground parking is $1.50/30 minutes.
5. JACK PURCELL DOG PARK
320 Jack Purcell Lane
Ottawa, Ontario K2P 2J5￼
This is a small, fenced downtown dog park where you can almost always find a handful of dogs playing. It provides a safe place for dogs to run around and play with each other. It has some shade, benches and a fountain which includes a water bowl for dogs. The ground is covered with fine gravel that is easy on paws and helps keep the park clean.
This isn’t a great place if you just want to play with your own dog, though, since three or four dogs are likely to dash for any ball you throw.
The entrances to the dog run are on Frank Street between Elgin and Metcalfe. Note that Frank Street is one-way westbound, so enter it from Elgin Street.
6. RIDEAU VIEW PARK
(not to be confused with Rideauview Park)
814 Earl Armstrong Rd
Gloucester, Ontario K1X 1H7
Next to Ottawa Fire Station 37, this dog park has parking right in front for easy access. It has a treed area next to it to provide some morning shade. Although it’s a bit small, it has nice green grass for the pups to play. I couldn’t find any Instagram pics to share with you, so if you have been here or go here, send the link to your Instagram post to [email protected] to be featured in the blog!
7. LEMIEUX ISLAND
1 Onigam St,
Ottawa, Ontario K1Y 2C4
Lemieux Island is a small island in the middle of the Ottawa River in the National Capital Region of Canada. The island lies between Gatineau, Quebec and Ottawa, Ontario. Although it is not technically fenced in, we decided to include it anyway since it’s an island so it’s pretty secure. It also has tons of river access for those who love to swim or wade in just to cool off. It’s quite large with shady spots for a nice afternoon in the sun!
8. FERGUSON FOREST DOG PARK
275 Highway 44
Kemptville, Ontario K0G 1J0
The Ferguson Forest Dog Park is about 40 minutes from Ottawa but like Rockland Dog Park it is definitely worth the drive. The attractive grass and forested area provides park patrons and their dogs with a large fenced area. The off-leash dog park includes an area designated for small dogs and an extensive forested area with lots of shade. You will find a safe facility to exercise your furry friends, as well as socialize with other dog owners. Dogs will enjoy frolicking with their owners and their dog friends in a place built just for them! Donations for the dog park are always welcome and appreciated. All donations that are received are used for important park activities – infrastructure creation and maintenance, promotion, and administration. More info can be found on their website here.
9. PARC CANIN DOG PARK
550 Notre Dame St,
Russell, Ontario K4R 1E5
Looks like this one is pretty far out of the city but it’s only 30-40mins from downtown off of HWY 417. This is a beautiful, well-kept park with a small canopy to provide some shade. It also has a water fountain for a refreshing drink for hot pooches! It is quiet, surrounded by trees, and has close access to bike and walking paths! Please note on their website of a couple of rules pertaining to this park, especially “Pinch (prong), choke and spike collars are not allowed in the dog park.” I love that they have this rule, I think it should be countrywide! Thanks to Dawnie Chartier and u/WinterSon for letting me know about this one!
10. CARP COUNTRY CANINES PLAY PARK
112 Delaney Dr.
Carp, Ontario K0A 1L0￼
This park has a really interesting concept, especially for people that have reactive dogs! On their website they say “[it was] created to eliminate the concerns associated with taking your dog to a public off-leash area. [They] provide a 2 acre fully fenced play area for private use. This means you get the whole space all to yourself during your reserved time slot. Amenities include fresh water, waste disposal, agility style obstacles, shade, shelter and swim area (coming summer 2018). In the Play Park there are no surprise encounters with unknown dogs so you can rest assured that you and your dog will be safe!”
30 minutes – $16.00
1 hour – $26.00
1 hour 30 minutes – $32.00
Thanks to Samurdhi Gunawardena (and her dog @sylar.the.malamute) for her comment on Facebook telling us about this gem!
11. TECH WALL DOG PARK
551-575 Laurier Ave W,
Ottawa, Ontario K1R 5Y9
Probably one of the coolest looking backgrounds (it’s an art graffiti wall), but it’s also probably the smallest park on our list. Great for Instagram dogs though! It has a mix of grass and concrete, trees surround it for some shade and it’s perfect if this is on your way to work or errands or if you live nearby! Thanks to u/SingingSky on Reddit for this one!
12. MCNABB PARK
180 Percy St
Ottawa, Ontario K1R 6E5￼
Did someone say pool?? There’s a wading pool at this park that allows dogs but I can’t seem to find anything official. @sheepadoodle_rosie told me that it’s open to dogs for the last hour on Tuesday summer evenings! I’m going to check it out next week and confirm!
There are a couple of other restrictions for use of this fenced park because it’s a schoolyard: No dogs allowed in the park from 7:00 am-6:30 pm (M-F), dogs on leash 7:00 am-6:30 pm (Sat, Sun) but dogs may be off leash any other time. Thanks to u/RestMyChemistry on Reddit for pointing this one out and to @sheepadoodle_rosie for confirming the info!
PROFESSIONAL DOG WALKING SERVICE
With all these great options around Ottawa, your dog should have no problem staying happy and healthy. If however, you’d like to give your dog some extra exercise and play, we would be more than happy to help! We offer professional dog walking services with a few different options, from group walks to private walks, and would be happy to add your dog to our pack after a free initial meet and greet.
To learn more, check out our Dog Walking Services.