Activities For Dogs In Illinois On Nice Days

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Introduction

The midwestern state of Illinois has the sixth largest population among US states. Fortunately, a large population is not all that Illinois has a lot of. In addition to being home to over 12 million people, Illinois has plenty of things that you and your pup can do together on nice days. You and your canine companion will not only find opportunities to spend time together but to do so outdoors, taking full advantage of the sunshine and fresh air. With so many choices, no matter the activity level of you and your pup, you will surely find multiple opportunities that are perfect for you both.

Shawnee National Forest Exploration

Popular
0 Votes
Sunny Day
Free
Easy
1 - 3 hrs
Items needed
Leash
Waste Bags
Treats
Water and Bowl
Activity description

A nice day in Illinois is the perfect time to explore the Shawnee National Forest. Covering more than 270,000 acres in portions of ten Illinois counties, the forest provides an excellent playground for both you and your pal that includes glades, prairies, streams, lakes, ponds, waterfalls, woodlands and rocky outcroppings. While visiting the Shawnee National Forest you and your pup can camp, paddle, hike, run and swim, and then relax with a picnic lunch afterward. No matter that interests and activity level of the both of you, you will have no problem taking advantage of a nice day when at Shawnee National Forest.

Step
1
Plan your trip
First, you will want to plan your visit to the Shawnee National Forest. A website is available to provide you with detailed information on what is available to do during your visit. You can view your options and choose which activity you think you and your pup will enjoy together. As the forest is quite large, you may choose based on location depending on how far you are open to driving. It is also good to keep temperature in mind; on hotter days of the year, you may want to visit the National Forest earlier in the morning or later in the day.
Step
2
Prepare for the adventure
Once you have an idea of what you will be doing when visiting Shawnee National Forest, you will want to figure out what you will need for your visit. As your dog will need to remain on leash, it is imperative that you bring that along. Waste bags are also necessary so that you can clean up after your pooch. It is likely that your pup will engage in a good amount of activity during your visit; make sure to bring along plenty of water and a water bowl so that you can ensure that your dog remains hydrated. Treats are always helpful to have along; you can use them as a reward or a distraction when needed. Other items that you will want to bring will depend on the activity or activities that you have chosen to do.
Step
3
Have a blast outdoors!
Once you have a plan and have what you need it is time for some fun. If you are seeking additional information, you can always stop by the Shawnee National Forest Headquarters in Harrisburg. Otherwise, you can head to the place you have chosen and enjoy some quality time with your dog, perhaps visiting Garden of the God's rock formations, or hike between large slabs of rock to Ox-lot cave and then cool off in Pounds Hollow Lake. A visit to Shawnee National Forest offers plenty of opportunity for the two of you take advantage of the day's nice weather!
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Kayaking Adventure

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Sunny Day
Moderate
Normal
1 - 2 hrs
Items needed
Leash
Doggie Life Jacket
Treats
Activity description
Kayak Chicago offers opportunities for you and your canine companion to explore the water together by kayak. Offering rentals and tours, Kayak Chicago will provide you with an orientation, education on paddling strokes, as well as on safety and the rules of the water. Bring along a life jacket for your dog and the two of you can then have an adventure together, with your dog sitting or standing on the kayak. Locations are available at Chicago River, North Avenue Beach and Montrose Beach. A kayak trip will offer the chance to get out and enjoy the nice day while seeing the city from a different perspective!
Step
1
Plan (or don't plan) your adventure
Enjoying time with you pup on a kayak may take some planning or can be done on a whim when you want up to nice weather. With the largest fleet of rental boats in the midwest, you don't need to make a reservation with Kayak Chicago, meaning you can take advantage of this opportunity with minimal planning ahead. If you are not coming from the Chicago area, the only planning necessary is how and at what time you will get to one of their three locations.
Step
2
Gather your gear
There are a few things you will want to be sure to have with you when kayaking with your dog. Bring a leash so that you can get your pup safely from the car to the boat launch area. Keep in mind that you will not want to tie your dog's leash to the kayak; should the kayak accidentally turn over, your pup would be stuck. A life jacket for your dog is necessary for your pup to be able to join you in the kayak so make sure to bring one along to ensure their safety. Treats may be helpful as well should you need to provide motivation for your pal to climb aboard the kayak.
Step
3
Explore the water
Upon arriving at Kayak Chicago, you can rent a kayak for an hour or longer. Once you have requested your rental, Kayak Chicago will provide education on paddling as well as safety and rules when on the water. Once you are comfortable, you and your pup can set out on the water in the kayak, where you can enjoy exploring Chicago from the water in the company of your special buddy.
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Dog Park Visit

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0 Votes
Sunny Day
Free
Easy
1 - 2 hrs
Items needed
Leash
Waste Bags
Treats
Water and Bowl
Activity description
When the weather is nice in Illinois, a visit to the dog park is a great way to enjoy some time together outdoors. There are plenty of options; for example, located in Hoffman Estates is Bo's Run, a dog park with plenty to keep your dog busy so that both of you can enjoy some outdoor. The park is fully fenced so that dogs can run safely off-leash. Water is available at the park as well as agility equipment. The park offers benches so that you can sit and watch your pup, make new friends, and have a blast while enjoying the nice weather. There are separate areas for large and small dogs. Depending on where you are in Illinois, you can check out Elliott Dog Park in Rockford, Central Bark in Lemont or Community Bark West in Glenview, among many other options; an internet search will show you the many options available to you and your pooch!
Step
1
Choose a dog park to visit
First you will need to choose which dog park you would like to visit with your pup. This will likely depend on where you are and how far you would like to travel as well as what you are looking for in a dog park. Some dog parks will offer agility equipment, others will provide more shade. There is plenty of information available online if you are not familiar with the parks near you or are seeking a park in a new area.
Step
2
Get packing!
No matter which dog park you choose, you will want to be sure to have a few things with you. A leash will be important; even if the park is fenced in, you will want to be sure to get your dog into the park safely. Waste bags are also key to have with you so that you can clean up after your pooch. Bring a Frisbee or ball so that you can engage your pup in a game of fetch should they seem unoccupied. Check to see if the dog park has running water; if not, you will want to bring some water and a water bowl so that you pup will keep hydrated.
Step
3
Enjoy!
Once you arrive at the dog park you have chosen, you can let your pup check things out. Some dogs will be more hesitant than others; it may take your pup some time to feel comfortable. If your dog is hanging back from the other pups at the park, you can involve them in a game of fetch which will help increase their comfort in the new environment. If the dog park includes agility equipment, you can also check that out. One of the great things about dog parks is that your dog will likely make a few friends and will run off and play happily with their new pals, allowing you to sit back, relax and watch your dog have fun while enjoying the beautiful day.
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More Fun Ideas...

Take a Walk on the Naperville Riverwalk

Located in Naperville, the Naperville Riverwalk offers 1.75 miles of things for you and your pup to check out. From brick paths, fountains, bridges, outdoor sculptures, memorials and artwork, the Riverwalk will keep you and your pup interested while you enjoy a beautiful Illinois day. Additional bonuses are the water spigots and shade that are found along the walk. Make sure that your pup is on-leash and that you clean up any messes.  While enjoying your walk, check out the Riverwalk Cafe, where canine customers are welcome and a simple dog menu is available.

Visit Klehm Arboretum and Botanic Garden

When the weather is nice in Illinois, take your pup to the Klehm Arboretum and Botanic Garden in Rockford. This former nursery now features plants that are native to the midwest, as well as plants from all over the world. Your dog will enjoy the chance to spend time outdoors in the pleasant weather while having the opportunity to take in all sorts of new smells. Your pooch must be on-leash and be well-behaved in order to be on the grounds. Make sure to bring waste bags and clean up after your dog.

Hop Aboard Mercury Canine Cruise

You and your pup can cruise the waterways of Chicago and listen to the narration of Chicago's history...with dog-friendly highlights of course! Your dog can be on your lap, in a seat or on the deck and must be on-leash. The boat for dog cruises provides a large amount of safe outdoor seating for canine customers, as well as water bowls and a newspaper-lined restroom. You and your pup can enjoy time together as well as the nice weather while on the canine cruise. Tickets can be received online or at the ticket office, which opens at 8:30 daily.

Conclusion

If you are looking for something to do with your pup when the weather is nice in Illinois, you should have no trouble finding a variety of options. The state offers opportunities for you and your pup to spend time together on both land and water, regardless of the activity needs of your dog or that activity level of either of you. Once you choose an activity that meets your interest, you and your pup will undoubtedly appreciate the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors and pleasant weather while being in one another's company.