Dogs can really brighten your day. Whether it’s their goofy smiles or their joy in rolling around in grass (as long as its clean!), time spent with a four legged companion lifts spirits. And if it’s your dog that you get to take out on your errands or special meals, you can really feel like your day is complete. Why confine Fido to the crate while the rest of the family gets to spend quality time together? We’ve compiled some spots in New Jersey where your family dog is welcome.
Our listing isn’t meant to be comprehensive – there are so many places to bring your pets. If we missed your favorite, please let us know in the comments below so we can add it here. We’ll continue to keep this list updated as we learn of more places you can take your dog in New Jersey.
New Jersey Dog Parks or parks with dog-friendly areas
So many towns have expanded or adapted parks to include off leash dog friendly spots. Fenced, and sometimes separated by dog size, these expanses of land are great for pups cooped in in the house all day or those without a yard of their own. It’s a great social spot for the owners too to take their dog in New Jersey.
North Jersey Dog Parks
- Maplewood – South Mountain Dog Park in Maplewood is a great spot for your big or small dog (they have separate areas) to try out some agility tricks on the provided obstacles!
- Westfield – Echo Lake Park in Westfield is a fenced 3 acres with separate spaces for small and large dogs.
- Wantage – Wantage Dog Park is a Sussex County gem with 8 fenced acres, seating, and shade.
Central Jersey Dog Parks
- Highland Park – Donaldson Park in Highland Park gives you two separate areas for your pups to play off leash, or explore the rest of the park with its boat launch and pond.
- Wall/Manasquan – Orchard Park in Wall/Manasquan is home to rolling hills and fields but has a special contained area for your pups. Parking is nearby and a playground is in view. Bonus that it’s on the popular bike path that leads either to Manasquan for the beach, or Allaire State Park for the woods.
- Somerset – There is a leash free area in Colonial Park, Somerset, with 3 fenced acres. Separate spaces exist for small and large dogs.
- Pennington – Rosedale Park Pennington keeps dogs engaged with play fountains, hills, agility jumps. Enjoy the trails and lake with your leashed dog as well.
South Jersey Dog Parks
- Egg Harbor Township – Open to members only, offers a sandy surface and agility equipment.
- Galloway – At the Imagination Station playground, off of the walking trail around the pond, is a gated dog park. It offers two areas for dogs to play: one for larger dogs and another for smaller dogs.
- Medford – Freedom Dog Park has 20 acres to roam, and a creek for splashing.
- Mount Laurel – Laurel Acres Park offers a smaller contained play space for your pups in picturesque Mount Laurel.
- Blackwood – Timber Creek Dog Park in Blackwood, Gloucester offers 9 fenced acres for your dog to explore.
- Delanco – Pennington Park has separated areas for both small and large dogs to play.
- Ocean City – 42,000 square feet for your dogs to play! Separated into three areas by dog size. Surface is sand, and there are water fountains, benches, and doggie play equipment.
Are we missing your favorite dog park? Let us know below!
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New Jersey beaches that allow dogs and New Jersey dog beaches
Many oceanfront beaches allow dogs in their off – season, which is roughly October 1 – April 1. Regulations change and certain sections of the beach may be off limits at all times. It’s always a good idea to have your dog on leash, though some towns may not require it which allows them to take a great jump in the waves. Included below are river and lake dog beaches too, because for some dogs ANY body of water makes for a great day out.
- Asbury Park Dog Beach – Dogs are permitted on Asbury Park’s 8th Avenue dog beach all day from September to May, and in the early morning hours during the summer season. Dogs can be unleashed, if controlled.
- Berkeley Township Dog Beach – Island Beach State Park allows dogs on the non lifeguarded beaches year round. There’s also a great trail you can take them on!
- Brigantine Beach – Dogs are allowed on Brigantine Beach between October 1st and May 29th.
- Manasquan Dog Beach – Fisherman’s Cove on the Manasquan Inlet in Manasquan is dog friendly for hanging out or swimming in the river. Watch the fishing boats go by and enjoy some quiet time with your pup at the Jersey Shore!
- Wildwood Dog Beach – Wildwood’s dog friendly beach is at Glenwood Avenue. You can’t miss it, just look for the giant fire hydrant sculpture! Spend the day at the beach with your dog and even swim in the ocean together.
New Jersey Hiking Trails That Allow Dogs
- The Batona Trail
- Historic Batsto Village
- Henry Hudson Trail in Atlantic Highlands
- Parvin State Park trails
New Jersey Restaurants That Allow Pets
Opinions can be mixed on the presence of pooches while eating a meal. If it’s a nice day to dine al fresco, here are some spots you can bring your pet to munch on those crumbs that fall off the table. Dog friendly locations will often provide a water bowl also and maybe even a treat or a dog approved dessert.
North Jersey Restaurants That Allow Dogs
- Urban Coal House, 116 14th Street, Hoboken (201) 292-3388
- Morristown Deli, 7 Elm Street, Morristown (973) 267-3766
Central Jersey Restaurants That Allow Dogs
- Wonder Bar Yappy Hour, 1213 Ocean Avenue, Asbury Park (732) 455-3767
- Federicis Freehold, 14 E. Main Street, Freehold (732) 462-1312
- Gladstone Tavern, 273 Main Street, Gladstone (908) 234-9055
South Jersey Restaurants That Allow Dogs
- PigDog Beach Bar at Morey’s Piers, 3501 Boardwalk, Wildwood (609) 729-3700
- Jenkinsons Inlet Bar, 300 Ocean Avenue, Point Pleasant Beach (732) 892-0600
New Jersey stores that allow dogs inside
Many local and nationally based pet stores obviously welcome your puppies. How else can Rover choose his favorite collar? Did you know that these stores have a corporate policy that pets are allowed?
- Home Depot
- Pottery Barn
- Pet Supplies Plus
- City Place at the Promenade is a pet-friendly shopping and dining destination located along the Hudson River in Edgewater, NJ (225 River Rd). In fact, each year the center hosts Woofstock + Friends featuring local pet-centric vendors, a red carpet Puparazzi Pooch Parade, and dogs and cats available for adoption.
- Hungry Puppy is a pet store in Farmingdale that offers a free outdoor dog park with equipment to climb on and toys to play with.
Take your dog on a vacation in New Jersey
New Jersey hotels that allow dogs
A pet fee will likely be added to your room cost but it might cost less than paying a dog sitter. Find a place to stay with Fido at one of the following:
- The Bungalow Hotel allows some dogs in hotel rooms with prior permission. Their pet policy states, “Guide dogs are accepted with prior arrangement. Additionally, the pets under 30 pounds are allowed for an additional fee of $75 per night plus tax. Otherwise, no pets are allowed at the Hotel.” For more information call (732) 229-3700. Click over to read about our experience at the Bungalow Hotel.
- Traveling to North Jersey for a trip into NYC or maybe to visit the new American Dream mall? Homewood Suites Mahwah allows pets up to 75 pounds with a $150 non refundable deposit per stay. For more information call (201) 760-9994
- Touring the historic Princeton University grounds and need Fido to have a safe place to snooze? Sonesta Suites Princeton welcomes pets to their extended stay hotel. A non refundable deposit of $75 for 1-2 nights or $150 for more than 2 nights applies. Your pet will get a special gift upon check in as well! For more information call (609) 951-0009
- Residence Inn by Marriott in Cherry Hill is the spot to leave your pet while you tour Philadelphia. They’ll even take two dogs per room, up to 50 pounds each. For more information call (877) 411-3436
- Drifting Sands Hotel in Ship Bottom provides a relaxing spot for your beach vacation with your pup. They have 12 pet friendly rooms and are located just steps from the ocean and beach. Pets can roam and swim free from mid-October to early April.
For a more home like experience, Airbnb or other rentals may allow pets. We love our Wildwood Crest rental that has a fenced yard so our pup can get some fresh air while we tend to all the after (and before) beach necessities.
New Jersey campgrounds that allow dogs in cabins
- Pleasant Acres Farm RV Resort, Sussex, (973) 875-4166
- Kymer’s Camping Resort, Branchville, (973) 875-3167
- Sea Pirate Campground, West Creek, (609) 296-7400
- Wading Pines Camping Resort, Chatsworth, (609) 726-1313
- KOA Philadelphia South/Clarksboro, (856) 423-6677
- Cape May KOA, Cape May (609) 884-3567
- Looking for a NJ State Park campground that’s pet friendly for tents? There’s a great list on this website: NJDEP Pet Friendly Camping Program
New Jersey Dog Centered Events
- Sporting Dog Days, September 21 and 22
- Woofstock in Voorhees, September 28
- Dogfest, September 28
- Oktoberfest, October 5 & 6
- Howl-o-Ween Dog Costume Contest, October 19
- Halloween and Pet Festival, October 26
- Fall Festival & Pooch Parade, October 26
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New Jersey Attractions Open to Dogs
It sounds a little crazy but yes – you can take your dogs to some New Jersey attractions! These could be perfect for your beach getaway with your dog so they can do some sightseeing as well.
- Cape May Whalewatcher wants you to share your dolphin and whale experience with your four legged friend. Friendly dogs on leashes are welcome to cruise with the family. For more information call 1-800-786-5445
- Absecon Lighthouse. Dogs are welcome on the grounds and in the museum as long as they’re on a leash. The 240 steps are best left to humans though. For more information call (609) 449-1360.
- Historic Cold Spring Village. Pets are welcome on the ground, when leashed. Dogs cannot enter the buildings. For more information call (609) 898-2300
- Cape May – Lewes Ferry. Pets ride free and are welcome in the On The Rocks restaurants located in both terminals. Your dog can even play a FREE round of miniature golf with you while you wait for your ride. For more information call (800)643-3779
- Working Dog Winery. Kids and leashed dogs are welcome to enjoy the free music every Saturday at this Hightstown winery. For more information call (609) 371-6000
In recent years there’s been a trend to open waterparks and pools to dogs on their final day of operation. Most of these are fundraisers for animal rescue groups and make for some adorable photos! In 2018 Morey’s Piers, Casino Pier & Breakwater Beach, and Summit Community Pool welcomed dogs for a splash in September. Tickets sell out fast so be sure to keep an eye on social media for this year’s dates.
New Jersey Farms That Welcome Dogs
Many New Jersey farms allow dogs to explore their grounds; maybe apple and pumpkin picking or a summer picnic is something your best friend would like?
- Ort Farms in Long Valley allows dogs in the pumpkin patch. Call (908) 876-3351 for more details.
- Alstede Farms in Chester allows friendly, leashed dogs on the farm but not in the picking areas. Call (908) 258-6245 for more information.
- Hill Creek Farms in Mullica Hill allows dogs in the picnic area and near the playground. Call (856) 223-0028 for more information.
New Jersey Towns that Host Dog Friendly Days
- Keyport hosts an annual Dog’s Night Out. The 2019 date was in June.
- Red Bank’s Dog Days are held twice during the summer, in June and August. Enjoy contests, activities, vendors and veterinary help.
- Westfield’s “Dog Days of Summer” event offers a pet pool, parade, prizes and more. It will be held August 11, 2019.
- Tuckerton Seaport’s “Dog Days of Summer” was last held August 2019. Picnic and pet games are included in your ticket price! Dress up for a portrait with your pet and much more doggy fun.
Can’t bring your pup along? Try one of these fun dog boarding locations in New Jersey
- Barker Lounge has multiple locations throughout New Jersey. Read about our visit to the Cranford location here, The Barker Lounge, a Vacation Location for Your Puppy.
- Squankum Animal Inn in Howell gives your pet personal attention and a large outdoor area to play. The owner lives on premises so you know your best friend will be well attended.
- Morris Animal Inn
Do you know of other places you can take your dog in New Jersey?
Let us know in the comments below.