Humber College Public Relations Student – Kristen Scollard
There are so many great spots in Toronto to venture out with your dog. No matter what part of the city you live in, you are sure to find a good park nearby. Determining a good park may not always be about the size or greenery, but more about the safety and accessibility of the park. The bylaws here in Toronto expect many parks to have rules outlined to have your dog leashed at all times, with designated areas or some parks even having time restrictions or unclear boundaries. However, the very best parks cater to both the pet and their owner.
Listed below are some of the best dog parks based on conveniences including, washrooms, poop n’ scoop areas/bags, fencing, off-leash areas, seating, walking trails, parking and whether it is accessible through subway or streetcar.
Allan Gardens- 121 Carlton Street
This park opened in fall 2008 and has an improved off-leash area with fencing surrounding the fully enclosed space. They have manicured shrubs and even a dog-themed sculpture. This park also features benches, adequate disposal facilities, 24-hour access and is also accessible by streetcar or subway route.
High Park- 1873 Bloor St. W.
High Park is the city’s largest with plenty of the best strolling opportunities. The well-marked trails are also part of the designated off-leash area. There is plenty of seating, nearby washrooms and a drinking fountain for pets. The park also features disposal facilities, parking, 24 hour access and accessibility through subway or streetcar routes.
PawsWay – 245 Queens Quay W.
Canada’s first pets-allowed indoor eatery makes this park one of the most popular amoung dog owners. Not only can your dog dine with you, it also offers 3700 square feet of indoor off-leash area. With winter walking being miserable most of the time, PawsWay both you and your pet some warmth for cold paws and fingers. This park also features washrooms, fencing, disposal facilities, walking trails, 24-hour access and accessibility through streetcar and subway routes.
South Stanley Park- 845 King St. W.
A good choice for downtown-west dog owners. There is an enclosed off-leash area along with many areas for seating, disposable facilities and accessibility from the subway and streetcar routes.
Trinity Bellwoods Park- 790 Queen St. W.
‘Hipster’ dogs and owners congregate in the off-leash pit at the centre of this massive urban park. While there is also picnicking and bocce ball surrounding. This dog-friendly park provides separation for dog owners as it is quite spread out. There is plenty of seating and green bins available around the park. This park is also accessible 24 hours and can be reached through subway and streetcar routes.
Vermont Square- 819 Palmerston Ave.
There a very few parks around the Annex area- Vermont Square being the only one in Palmerston area. This unfenced patch of grass is nestled between pretty houses and safely sheltered from busy streets. The park also features seating areas and disposable facilities.
Overall, Toronto is a great city to own a dog, with so many options for the both of you. Aside from this list of chosen parks, there are still many other options around the city that may be of your choice depending on your location in the city. Even if the park of your choice isn’t nearby, you can always hop on a streetcar or subway as most of them are accessible through transit.
As a dog owner, I prefer Highpark, as it is nearby and offers great features. What park would you choose for you and your dog?