Seattle is a dog-friendly city, with lots of options for outdoor activities where you can bring them along with you.
Dogs are generally welcome in all Seattle parks as long as they are on a leash.
They aren’t allowed on most athletic fields, on the beaches, or in children’s play areas in the parks in Seattle.
There are 14 fun-filled exceptions to that rule.
These off-leash parks are designed to allow your dog to run around without the restraint of a leash. Meeting other dogs off-leash is a more natural way for them to interact.
When a dog is off their leash, they learn how to socialize with other dogs through play. They also get the added benefit of exercise. Well-socialized dogs tend to be more relaxed and less aggressive.
Seattle has 14 off-leash areas for your dog.
The exact locations are available on the Seattle government website here.
- Blue Dog Pond Off-Leash Area
- Denny Park Off-Leash Area
- Dr. Jose Rizal Park Off-Leash Area
- Genesee Park Off-Leash Area
- *Golden Gardens Off-Leash Area
- I-5 Colonnade Off-Leash Area (under maintenance 2021)
- Kinnear Park Off-Leash Area
- Magnolia Manor Park Off-Leash Area
- *Magnuson Park Off-Leash Area
- Northacres Park Off-Leash Area
- Plymouth Pillars Off-Leash Area
- Regrade Park Off-Leash Area
- Westcrest Park Off-Leash Area
- Woodland Park Off-Leash Area
Don’t miss the two local favorites, which are *Golden Gardens and Magnuson Park.
Golden Gardens is a favorite because it’s right beside a beach. That makes it a friendly location for families, as both pups and children enjoy the outing.
The dog park is large, one acre, and is found in the upper northern part of the park. There’s a big area to run and play that’s covered in wood chips as well as lots of trees for shade. There are tables, seating, and a covered area for rainy days.
Magnuson is a huge park, 8.6 acres, is located on Lake Washington’s freshwater shoreline, and joy-of-joys has water access for your dogs.
It’s the only water access park for dogs within city limits.
Big guys love this park because they have lots of room to roam.
There’s a large flat area for racing around, some trails, and a couple of open areas along the way. Most of the trail is compact gravel and wheelchair accessible.
For your timid dog, this park has an area specially designed for them. It’s within the larger park, south of the main entrance kiosk. You can access it from NE 74th street. It’s clearly marked with signage and fully fenced to keep your little guys safe from the bigger dogs.
It’s the largest and most popular Seattle off-leash dog park.
There’s another outdoor option for dogs and their owners.
That’s the Washington Park Arboretum.
The Washington Park Arboretum is one of Seattle’s most beautiful parks and dogs are welcome as long as they are leashed and you pick up after them.
The park is huge. Two hundred and thirty acres of trails, gardens and picnic spots. Guided tours are available.
As well as the beautiful gardens, there are several natural areas at the Center for Urban Horticulture.
The Union Bay Natural Area and Yesler Swamp can be explored via their extensive walking trails and visitors will enjoy beautiful views of Lake Washington.
You can download the trail map at this link.
Seattle has a recent initiative to fund improvements and major maintenance issues in off-leash dog parks.
One park has been identified for major work beginning January 2021. It’s the I-5 Colonnade Dog Park.
The plan is to work on the larger river rock that has come up through the gravel walking surface.
The park is still open but certain areas will be closed during the work. Access to the Park can be done from the opposite entrance. No access at work site.
People, Dogs, and Parks Plan
Seattle worked with their community members to create a People, Dogs, and Parks Plan. They use the plan to gather input on improvements.
Here are some of the improvements they have completed and noted on their website:
- “Knocked down overgrown blackberries and thistle growth at Dr. Jose Rizal Dog Park and added self-closing gate access points throughout the Park
- Scrapped and added additional gravel at I-5 Colonnade Dog Park to minimize build up high spots
- Cleared blackberries and thistles overgrowth at Blue Dog Pond OLA
- Built a new fence around the 8.6-acre Magnuson Park OLA
- Installed a small and shy dog area along with other improvements at Genesee Park
- Installed a small and shy dog area at Woodland park along with additional improvements
- Installed an 18" block wall inside the fence along Bell Street at Regrade Park, to prevent gravel from the OLA from migrating onto the Bell Street sidewalk
- Installed a new pedestrian access gate and new vehicle access gates at Northacres Park OLA, and replaced damaged and deteriorating fencing
- Resurfaced the existing gravel path and installed new benches at the Dr. Jose Rizal Park OLA
- Installed dog agility equipment and fence repairs at Golden Gardens OLA”