10 Great Places To Bring Dogs In New York City

Dog | © Jeff Ro/Flickr
Dog | © Jeff Ro/Flickr
Photo of Taylor Haacke
13 December 2016

Owning a dog in New York City is no walk in the park (even when it’s exactly that); you love your dog, and the last thing you want is for your furry pal to stay cooped up in a tiny one bedroom apartment all day. The good news is that with the warmer weather comes countless local activities for you to partake in with your canine companion.

Central Park

If you live in Manhattan, you know that Central Park is a great spot for any and all occasions. But did you know that designated spots in the park allow you to let your dog off the leash before 9 am and after 9 pm? There are 23 areas around Central Park for your dog to dig, sniff, roll, and run around without the confines of a leash – a great way to grab some fresh air and kickstart your day with your better half.

Happy Dog | ©Soroush Javadi/flickr

Prospect Park Dog Beach

Yes, summer is great. It means longer days, warmer afternoons, and a lot of outdoor fun. But don’t let your four-legged friend fry in the heat – take them to Prospect Park’s Dog Beach, where they can go for a dip or a swim with other furry pals. It’s a great place for both you and your pup to mingle.

Dog | ©EmmyMik/flickr

SPOT Canine Club

Why not spoil your pooch? SPOT Canine Club is a facility that caters to even the grubbiest of dogs and sends them off looking and feeling their best. Pamper your dog with a ‘buff and puff’ (a doggy blowout) and some delicious treats at their dog bakery, which even includes dog ice cream. Treat yourself to some edible human cakes too so that your dog won’t be the only thing to leave happier.

Dog | ©chifei Liao/flickr

Bark In The Park

Sports Center
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Labrador Pup
Labrador Pup | © Marc Smith/Flickr
Nothing says ‘summer’ quite like baseball season, so why not bring your best bud along? Each year, the Brooklyn Cyclones host Bark in the Park, and this year it will be held on August 14th. From 2 pm until 5 pm, they have a pet adoption for those seeking a new canine companion. They also offer dog licensing and an ‘Emergency Preparedness Clinic’ in case you and your four-legged friend are caught in an emergency situation. Next is a pre-game parade around the field for you and your pooch. There will also be special performances by canine performers from Pawstars.

School For The Dogs

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Jekku Before He Had A Name
Jekku Before He Had A Name | © Petteri Sulonen/Flickr
Who says that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks? At School For The Dogs, everyone will leave learning something new. Attend Puppy Kindergarten, Prep School, and Secondary School. They also have a great ‘Puppy Playtime’ for your pooch to socialize with some new friends. Older dogs are welcome as well – they offer behavioral classes to help dogs feel more comfortable and less threatened on those pesky NYC sidewalks and classes to teach pups not to freak out on skaters. They even have ‘Breed Meetups’ so that dog owners can make some life-long human friends of their own.


This rehabilitation center catering to canines is a great place for you to bond with your pal. Located in Tribeca, Water4Dogs allows you to swim around with your pooch for up to one hour. Not only is this a one-of-a-kind experience, but it’s also a great way for you to help and bond with your puppy. If your dog is in need of a little TLC, Water4Dogs offers dry and hydro-therapy.

Dogs Swimming | © Gloria/Flickr


Keep the spirit of your pet alive forever with a photo session from your favorite ‘petographer.’ Photographer Jim Dratfield will immortalize your pooch and capture their true spirit and nature. This project is very personal to him as he was inspired by the photos that he took of his late dog Kuma. Shaina Fishman also offers portrait sessions for pets. She can take breathtaking close-ups and full-body images, forever immortalizing your best friend.

The Shy One | © Petteri Sulonen/Flickr

Shake Shack

Restaurant, Bar, American, Fast Food, $$$
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No, this isn’t a typo. Shake Shack, the one located in Madison Square Park, was opened in 2004 and became a staple NYC tradition shortly thereafter. Bring your furry friend along this time because there is something awaiting the both of you. As you delve face-first into a delicious burger and some mouthwatering fries, treat your pooch to a ‘Pooch-ini’: a chilled doggy-treat, coated in peanut butter with dog-friendly vanilla custard.

Running Paws Athletic Club

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Emotion motion
Emotion motion | © Jelly Dude/Flickr
As much as you want to, you can’t spend 24/7 with your puppy pal. Instead of leaving them behind, drop them off at Running Paws Athletic Club. New York’s premium doggy fitness center is the perfect place for your pooch to exercise and make friends. If you’re worried about your little guy being harassed by bigger dogs, fear not: the club consists of two dog runs, one for the larger and energetic and one for the more timid (and for the senior pups as well). You also won’t have to worry about any mean bullies at this club as all dogs are tested for aggression.

Inwood Hill Park Trail

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Dog | © Denis789/Flickr
It’s time for you and your furry friend to get some exercise. Forget that you’re in Manhattan for a moment and walk the two-mile hike in Inwood Hill Park. It will take about one hour to complete, and Fido will thank you. This is the only natural park on Manhattan Island. It’s a great place to take your dog and forget about the fast-paced streets that surround you.

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