Activities For Dogs In Everglades National Park

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Introduction

The Everglades National Park is in Homestead, Florida on State Road 9336 and it boasts over one million acres of natural land with prairies, bogs, saltwater lakes, freshwater lakes, swamps, forests, and grassland. You and your pooch will likely see some wild critters here, which may include some rare species such as the West Indian manatee and Florida panther. Keeping your pooch on a leash is mandatory as well as smart for the safety of your pup since there are a lot of predators around like alligators and wild cats. Be prepared to see some pawsitively amazing displays of colorful flowers and mysterious swamplands.

Hiking

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Any Day
Free
Easy
30 - 90 min
Items needed
cleanup bags
water
leash
Activity description
Hiking with your canine kid is a wonderful experience for both of you no matter where you are but, in the Everglades, National Park it is especially pawesome. You and your fur buddy will be able to hike along all paved pathways in the park, which adds up to over 50 miles of walking trails. The only places where you and Fido are not allowed to hike on are the unpaved paths. Your pooch will have to be on a leash no longer than six feet in length, and you should bring plastic poo bags to clean up after them. Along the path, you will see lots of critters such as birds, alligators, turtles, squirrels, and rabbits but make sure your pupster does not aggravate or chase them. This is a free activity that can last anywhere from 30 to 90 minutes, depending on which trail you choose, and you won’t need anything but water and a leash.
Step
1
Leash your pooch
The first thing you need to do is make sure your dog is on a leash no longer than six feet long to comply with state and park regulations. If your pup has not walked on a leash before, train them on the leash for several days before attempting a hike in the Everglades National Park. The last thing you want is to lose your favorite fur buddy in the Everglades.
Step
2
Exploring the scenery
Teach your furry friend to enjoy the wilderness by showing them the sights but not letting them get too close. This is a sanctuary for the wildlife and there are quite a few predatory animals as well such as alligators. Make sure to bring plenty of water for both of you to stay hydrated in the Florida heat.
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Boat Tours

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Sunny Day
Moderate
Normal
1 - 8 hrs
Items needed
cleanup bags
leash
water
Activity description
The Everglades National Park offers boat tours to the public for a small fee, and they allow pooches of all kinds as long as they are kept under control and on a leash. There are actually many different companies that offer boat tours from $25 to $159, depending on the duration of the tour. Your poochie will have to stay on-leash during the whole trip, and you need to bring cleanup bags to pick up after your fur buddy. But, your fur baby will enjoy feeling the wind in their face and seeing the baby alligators and other critters on tour. The tour can last from one to eight hours, depending on which one you choose. The only things you will need besides cleanup bags for this activity are a leash and some water.
Step
1
On the leash
Training your dog to stay on a leash for a certain amount of time takes practice so be sure you start doing this for a few weeks before your trip. Sitting in a boat on a leash is a lot different from hiking or walking on a leash because your pooch must sit or stand in one spot. It takes some time and patience to get your buddy acclimated to wearing the leash and staying still.
Step
2
Socializing
Your canine kid must be socialized to go on a boat ride with other people. Take your dog on trips to the dog park and other places where they will encounter other people and pets. Let your pooch get used to the other people by sniffing them and encourage people to pet your dog so they are used to being social before getting on a boat with a bunch of strangers.
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Tram Tours

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Sunny Day
Moderate
Normal
2 hrs
Items needed
cleanup bags
leash
water
Activity description
Like the boat tour, the tram tours through the Everglades National Park are offered to the public for a fee, and there are several companies with different rates. The main one is the Shark Valley Everglades Tram Tour, which lasts for two hours and costs $25 per adult, $12.75 for children, and your dog is free. However, your pup must comply with the rules and be friendly and be able to sit still for two hours. This ecotour is guided by a naturalist who will give you all the details of each area and even point out some hidden spots in the glades that you won’t find anywhere else. You will be able to get out onto a 45-foot high observation deck with a pawsitively gorgeous view of the Everglades at the halfway point where you can take photos or just enjoy the view.
Step
1
Getting leashed
Just like with the other activities, your dog has to be used to wearing a leash for the duration of the tour, which is over two hours, so you should practice some leash skills beforehand. Take your pupster on walks with the leash on and you can even let them get used to it by walking them around the house with it on. Try a harness instead of a collar if your dog does not like the collar as it is easier on their neck.
Step
2
Sitting pretty
Teach your dog to sit pretty, which is just another way to say sitting still. To do this, you will need a leash and some treats. Put the leash on your pooch and tell them to sit. Once they sit down, reward them with a treat. Build up to a longer and longer time by not giving them the treat until they have sat for a longer period. Make sure you use the “sit pretty” command so your dog knows what you want them to do.
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More Fun Ideas...

Disc Dogging

Try playing some frisbee with your pooch in some of the unleashed areas of the park. You can get this information from the Everglades National Park website or visitor’s center. Tossing the frisbee to your dog while they are leashed is not as fun but it can be done, you just cannot throw it as far.

Camping

Camping with your canine kid is just as much fun as camping with the kids except you have to keep your four-legged kids on a leash. Of course, some people put their human kids on leashes too, but that is another story. The Everglades National Park allows you to have your pup with you when you camp as long as they remain on-leash and are cleaned up after.

Conclusion

Taking your poochie to the park is always fun, and the Everglades National Park is even more fun since they have tons of wild animals and new scents for your pup to smell. So, put a leash on your fur buddy and head on over to the park for some fun in the glades. Just make sure to bring extra water and plastic poo bags.