Oxford is a quiet residential city in New Haven County, Connecticut known for its inviting atmosphere. In the words of the town’s First Selectman, “We are a community that enjoys our neighbors and friends.” This friendly nature extends not just to its humans, but to its pets, too. Oxford boasts 5 dog-friendly eateries and 4 excellent veterinary centers to care for the city’s canine critters.
Although there are no off-leash facilities within the city proper, there are 3 great paw parks in the 10 miles surrounding Oxford. One thing that sets this town apart is that it is bordered by 3 different state parks! Local puppers looking for some exercise pawticularly enjoy hitting the Larkin State Park Trail, which runs from Kettletown Road in Southbury to Whittemore Glen State Park in Naugatuck.Hungry humans and doggos have several options to choose from in Oxford. One spot that stands out for the early risers is Fritz's Snack Bar. This charming local establishment welcomes dogs in the patio area and is known for serving up delicious eggs benedict and fresh blueberry pancakes to the morning crowd. If your pup prefers to sleep in, stop by for a delicious lunch and make sure you get a bowl of their famous clam chowder!
If a relaxing seaside stroll or sandy game of fetch sounds like your idea of paw-adise, make sure you pay a visit to Jennings Dog Beach! This off-leash hound haven is open to pups from October 1st to March 31st, making it a favorite hangout for resident doggos during the cooler seasons. The sparkling water and white sand make this dog beach feel exceptionally extravagant, and the fact that it is leash-free creates an even more luxurious atmosphere! During the off-season, dogs pretty much have the run of this tranquil little strand -- the only restrictions are that pups are not permitted on the boardwalk, pavilion, or playground. Run, don’t walk, to this furrific spot; just don’t forget the sunscreen!
The Cascades at Lake Mohegan is located twenty-five miles south of Oxford, in the town of Fairfield. Though a bit farther of a drive than the other local canine-friendly parks, this place is well worth a visit — besides, your dog won’t mind the long car ride! This nature park is super relaxed with its dog policy and just asks that you keep your dog leashed within 100 feet of parking lots, picnic areas, and swimming beaches — other than that, your pooch is free to roam (under voice control, of course). There are plenty of features to explore here, including waterfalls, streams, and several walking trails. The park also has waste stations dotted throughout the area to accommodate the needs of furry visitors and their parents. Stop on by — this is a must-sniff destination!
Situated on the border of Oxford and Southbury, Southford Falls State Park is a place of wonder and raw natural beauty that any pup family is sure to enjoy. Not only is it a convenient location, but it is also uniquely untouched in relation to other parks and preserves in the area. Leash up your pooch and embark on a journey filled with stunning cascading falls, miles of paths through unspoiled forests, and babbling streams. The park is a very popular location for weddings, and the picturesque covered bridge is a pawticular favorite for bridal photoshoots. Be sure to bring your camera along as well; the gorgeous scenery is a perfect place for an impromptu photoshoot of your own!
There aren’t many things in life better than dogs, books, and a good cup of joe — but what do you get if you combine the three? Books and Company, that’s what! Just a 30-minute drive southeast of Oxford, this new and used bookstore is a one-stop shop for pooch-wielding bookworms. Not only does this shop offer a huge collection of fascinating and varied reads, but it also has lots of other interesting items for sale, as well! There is even a kids section for the two-legged children to enjoy! If that’s not enough to sell you on this pawesome spot, they even host jewelry-making classes for the more crafty humans! The staff here are super fur-iendly and will ensure your fluffy nerd starts a collection of his own (of treats that is)!
The city paw park in Southbury is considered by many to be the best dog park around. Located off Roxbury Road, Southbury Dog Park has all the necessary amenities for the pawfect park experience: acres of lush grass for a great off-leash experience, walking trails for doggy duos to bond, a cool stream to splash around in, and a separate section to safeguard the more delicate visitors. Another fantastic asset is that this is a very popular destination for the furry locals, ensuring your pooch will always have a playmate to fetch with! Bring some towels, though -- the stream can make for very dirty puppers!