By Jessica Cage
When summer strikes in Chicago, it’s time for families to start planning their weekend getaways. Just don’t make the mistake of forgetting a very important member of the family this year. That furry, four-legged pal who waits for you at the end of each day needs a little vacation as well. Take the time to plan a day trip to please the entire family at the best places to take a doggy day trip near Chicago.
Cabin Nature Center Dog Park
111 S Wood Dale Road
Wood Dale, IL 60191
Open from dusk to dawn, Cabin Nature Center Dog Park offers a ton of fun for your pup. Take the leash off and let your dog stretch its legs on the mulch-covered ground. There is also agility equipment to help both you and your dog stay fit and active. After playtime, head out on the nature trail. Getting there only takes a half hour, so that leaves plenty of time for play for both you and your furry friend.
Blue Island Bark Park
2601 W. 119th St.
Blue Island, IL 60406
Price: $25 annually
Less than a half hour away from the heart of Chicago, Blue Island’s Bark Park, is the first of its kind in the area. This fenced in park allows for fun play as long as the sun is shining. From sunup to sundown, your dog can run and play with more than 200 other pups of all sizes. Download the registration form online and register at the Memorial Park Field House before you head out. Make sure your dog has all vaccinations up to date and current city dog tags before registration.
Independence Grove Dog Park
1899 W Winchester Rd
Libertyville, IL 60048
Price: $44 annually residents/$120 non-residents
This park takes a little longer to get to, at about 45 minutes, but once your pup sees the 30 acres of open land, you will know it is worth the drive. This awesome dog park opens at 6:30 a.m. to canines of all sizes. The park is separated into four areas with the Des Plaines River bordering one side. There is a pond for the pups to play in, and with all the trails and land to roam, it’s sure to have a new adventure every time you visit. Daily permits are available for $5 and $10 for anyone who doesn’t venture out there enough to purchase the annual pass.
Hound Town Dog Park
851 Illinois 176
Crystal Lake, IL 60012
Price: $30 resident/$45 non-resident
This three-acre park has keycard entry to ensure the safety of your pet. Safety is a focal point at the Hound Town Dog Park so you can unleash your hound without any additional worries of losing them. Key cards are valid for one year and are renewed with payment of the next annual fee. An additional perk along with the major fun your pooch will be having is the identification tag the park provides, so no confusion over which dog goes with what family if you’re separated.
3220 Oakton St.
Skokie, IL 60076
Price: $45 resident/ $85 non-resident
The Pooch Park is a 2.7-acre fenced in facility that allows dogs to run freely without the restrictions of a leash. There is an on-site agility area and a special section for the pups who can’t run with the big dogs. Water fountains are available for both humans and canines alike. Restrooms and parking are available for ease of access with the benefit of not having to leave all the fun for human potty breaks. Visit during Woofstock to celebrate its annual celebration that provides food, demonstrations, games and contests.