(Off-Leash Areas + Leashed Parks)
By Erie of Everywhere Ontario
All dog owners agree that there's nothing quite as exciting for their pup as a good run in a dog park. Finding the right dog park for your dog is key, and London, Ontario, has some great options.
London has 5 designated off-leash dog parks and various other parks and trails that welcome leashed dogs. We'll highlight the amenities of each of the city's off-leash areas, and give you our recommendations for which parks to check out if you're looking to bring your dog for a leashed walk.
Off-Leash Dog Parks in London, Ontario
Off-leash dog parks are highly coveted by all dogs who know the freedom of being off-leash.
Knowing what to expect at London's off-leash dog parks is crucial so that your outing remains safe and pleasant for you, your dog, and everyone else.
We've also included some suggestions for what to do near each off-leash area, so that your dog isn't the only one having fun on your outing!
1.Pottersburg-FIDO Off-Leash Dog Area
Location: Pottersburg Park, at the intersection of Hamilton Rd and Gore Rd, London
London's largest off-leash dog park is the Pottersburg-FIDO Off-Leash Dog Area. Located in Pottersburg Park south of the intersection of Hamilton Rd and Gore Rd, this off-leash area includes both a fenced section and a non-fenced section, with cleared trails in both parts of the park.
The double gated entrance ensures that dogs can't escape and keeps other animals out. There is also a completely fenced section for small dogs. Site amenities include benches and picnic tables, garbage cans, and even a portable toilet.
After spending time in the off-leash area, consider taking the Meadowlily Woods Trail to check out the nearby Meadowlily Woods Environmentally Significant Area. The expansive multi-pathway system of the Thames Valley Parkway (TVP) runs through Meadowlily Woods and connects all corners of the city. A walk on the TVP is one of the best things to do in London, Ontario.
2.Stoney Creek Off-Leash Area
Location: Stoney Creek Meadows, on Adelaide Street north of Windermere Rd
London's second largest off-leash dog park is the Stoney Creek Off-Leash Area. This fenced park, located on Adelaide Street North, includes both trails and a large, open grass area. There is also a separate area for small dogs, double gated entrances, garbage cans, benches, and a portable toilet.
While you're in this area, consider crossing Adelaide and walking to the far east end of Windermere Road where you can enter the Kilally Meadows trail. This trail meanders along the Thames River and through beautifully forested parks in the northeast end of the city.
3.Greenway Off-Leash Area
Location: Greenway Park, 399 Wonderland Rd S, London
West London's off-leash dog park is the Greenway Off-Leash Area, located in Greenway Park. This park runs along the Thames River, and is accessed from Greenside Ave off of Springbank Drive. While the city park itself spans a fair distance along Thames River, the off-leash dog park is located just east of the Greenway Park playground and Terry Fox Memorial.
Greenway Off-Leash Area is completely fenced and includes trails through a shady wooded area, benches for resting, and a separate small dog area. There is also a double gated entrance as well as a portable toilet.
After spending time in the off-leash area, consider leashing your pup up and following the trail under Wonderland Road and into Springbank Park, where you'll popular busy paved trails along the river. Springbank is truly beautiful in every season!
4.Caesars Off-Leash Area
Location: 941 Commissioners Road East
Caesar's Off-Leash Dog Park is located on the southside of Commissioners Road, just east of Adelaide Road South. This fenced, open area is a mix of grass and wood-chipped ground, and includes an area for large dogs and a separate smaller dog area.
There's a double gated entrance and garbage containers for convenience. Benches are also located throughout the park for resting while your pup plays.
Caesar's dog park is located close to the trailhead for Westminster Ponds/Pond Mills Conservation Area. If you're looking for a walk through beautifully forested trails after your outing to the off-leash park, consider adding this hike to your trip.
5.Campbell Memorial Park Dog Off-Leash Area
Location: Campbell Memorial Park, 380 Dundas Street East, London
Tucked in between downtown London's city buildings, Campbell Memorial Park Dog Off-Leash Area is the closest off-leash dog park for downtown residents. This fenced off-leash dog park is entirely covered in wood chips, providing a soft and quiet area for your dog to explore. The double gate entrance ensures that dogs can't escape to the busy roads, and garbage containers are provided for convenience.
While this off-leash dog park isn't as expansive or as ideal for exploring nature as the others in the city, it does provide a convenient option for those living downtown who don't want to drive to one of the larger off-leash areas.
It's also worth noting that the location downtown means it can be prone to more human use as simply a park when it's not busy with dogs. Unfortunately, some patrons say there can be litter on the ground and report that it's not always in great shape.
More Popular Parks for Dogs in London, Ontario
Now that we've covered London's five off-leash dog parks, here are some of the best parks, environmentally significant areas and trails that leashed dogs love to explore.
Location: Intersection of Westdel Bourne Road and Kains Road
Located in the residential area of River Bend in London's west end, the Kains Woods hiking trail runs for 7.5 km along the Thames River, through a beautiful, mature forest.
The trail feels remote, rural and is incredibly peaceful and is walkable in every season.
Leashed dogs are welcome on this trail! Be mindful of the possibility of encountering wildlife on this nature trail.
Location: Various access points (Main entry point: 90 MacKay Ave, London)
Euston Park lies within the Coves Environmentally Significant Area in the Southcrest neighbourhood of London. This park is great for dogs because it's a mix of wide-open grassy meadows and forested area, and the park isn't usually busy. The perimeter trail in Euston Park is approximately 2 km, and there are interconnecting trails that can extend the length of your hike through the park.
Leashed dogs will love the trails in Euston Park! Remember to be mindful of ticks in the grassy meadows.
Location: Various access points (Main entry point: Kiwanis Park Drive)
Located north of Pottersburg Off-Leash Dog Park, the Kiwanis Park Trail provides a beautiful and peaceful walk through green spaces in the Fairmont and Hamilton Road neighbourhoods. This paved, multi-use trail runs for over 3 km north-south, running along Pottersburg Creek past playgrounds, open grassy areas and even forested areas.
Leashed dogs are allowed on this trail, and it's a great place to bring along your pup for a peaceful and scenic walk in London's east end.
9.Medway Valley Forest Trails
Location: Various access points (Main entry point: Intersection of Gainsborough Rd and Whiteacres Dr)
The Medway Valley Forest Trails Environmentally Significant Area offers 11 km of beautiful trails that will make you - and your dog - forget you're in the city. This park encompasses swamps, marshland and various kinds of forest - making it a great spot for exploring nature with your pup. Dogs must be on their leash in the Medway Valley Forest, but the sheer size of the park means you'll rarely come across others. On a hot day, your dog will also love to cool off in the Medway Creek.
10.Fanshawe Conservation Area
Location: Fanshawe Conservation Area, 1424 Clarke Road
This conservation area provides plenty of paths and trails for you and your pup to explore. While dogs must be on-leash in the Fanshawe Conservation Area, the trail system here is expansive and much less busy than most of the smaller, free parks in the city.
Remember that you must pay admission to enter the conservation area between May-October, but it's free during the off-season. Fanshawe Conservation Area also makes for a great day trip from London for families looking for something close by that feels like you’re really getting out of the city!
11. Westminster Ponds
Location: Various access points (Main entry point: 696 Wellington Road)
Westminster Ponds is a lovely natural area in the Southdale and Pond Mills neighbourhoods of London, and a perfect place for your pup to go for a long walk. The ponds and surrounding forest are beautiful in every season and while these trails are popular, the park is large enough that your hike will still feel fairly secluded.
There are multiple access points to Westminster Ponds through the surrounding developments, but the main entry is at the Tourism London building on Wellington Road. Remember that dogs must be on-leash in Westminster Ponds.
What are some of the rules for off-leash dog parks in London?
Most of the city off-leash dog parks will have rules signs posted at the park. It's important to follow the rules posted for everyone's safety. Here are some of the rules for off-leash dog parks:
- hours are set by the city and are currently from 6am-10pm (or dusk)
- dogs must be current with vaccinations
- license tags must be worn
- dogs must be on leash when entering, exiting and outside of the off-leash areas
- you must keep your dog within sight and under verbal control
- dogs that are sick, aggressive, in heat or under 4 months of age cannot use the dog parks
- dogs requiring a leash or muzzle by law must continue to do so while in the off-leash area
What is proper dog park etiquette?
Dog park etiquette is important for everyone's safety and enjoyment. Here are some tips:
- clean up after your dog and dispose of garbage in the bins
- avoid playing too rough with other dogs or people
- bring appropriate toys and treats to the park but not food intended for humans or glass containers that could break
- make sure your dog has been properly socialized before visiting a busy off-leash dog park
- don't let your dog chase wild animals
- try to avoid bringing children to the dog park and keep them in sight at all times
Which off-leash dog parks have a separate area for small dogs?
The following parks have a separate area for small dogs:
- Caesars Off-Leash Dog Park
- Greenway Off-Leash Dog Park
- Pottersburg FIDO-Off-Leash Dog Park
- Stoney Creek Off-Leash Dog Park
What is the best off-leash dog park in London, Ontario?
Pottersburg FIDO Off Leash Dog Park is London's largest dog park, and is arguably the best in the city. This park is usually very well maintained and has a beautiful setting by the forest and Pottersburg Creek. There are plenty of reasons why this is the most highly-rated off-leash dog park in London, Ontario!
Wrap Up: 11 Best Dog Parks in London, Ontario
When it comes to finding the best dog parks in London, Ontario, there are plenty of great options to choose from. Whether you’re looking for a large enclosed off-leash area or a more natural setting for a leashed walk, each park offers something unique for you and your pup to explore.