Although Des Moines is one of the largest cities in the great state of Iowa, it is home to only one dog park, the Raccoon River Dog Park. Located only fourteen miles from Summerset, the drive should only take you about half an hour at most. But trust us, the drive is truly worth it! Racoon River Park is approximately twelve acres in size and completely fenced in, so you can feel free to leave the leash at home. It is also separated into areas depending on dog size, so if your dog is small or shy, you don’t have to force them to socialize with big, rambunctious dogs.
Situated approximately half an hour from the city of Summerset is Ankeny, Iowa. It is home to only one dog park, Ankeny Dog Park. This park is nearly eight acres in size and completely fenced in. It also has many water fountains on its property as well as a biodegradable waste station for doggie poop. Although this park is pretty new in the area, it is loved by locals already because of its lush green grass and open spaces. When you’re done playing at the park, head to the High Trestle Trail. Although the trail is not off-leash, it welcomes all dogs.
Although Ames is a bit of a drive from Summerset because it is located approximately fifty miles away, it is well worth the drive. Your drive will take you through the city of Des Moines where there is one dog park. Ames is also home to one dog park, the Ames Dog Park. This park has everything you could ask for in a dog park. It is approximately ten acres in size and split up into zones depending on dog size. The park is very strict about usage and requires all dog owners to provide vaccination certification before they are given a permit tag for the park.
Located only twenty miles from Summerset is the city of Altoona. This quiet, peaceful city does not have any off-leash dog parks, but it is home to the Gay Lea Wilson Trail/4-Mile Creek Greenway Trail. This trail is not off-leash, but welcomes all leashed dogs. It is one of approximately 1,600 railway trails preserved by the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy because of its historical significance. Since this is not an off-leash dog park it would behoove you to take your own water, doggie poop bags and toys. And remember to keep your furry four-legged companion on a leash at all times!
If you drive a mere twenty-five miles from your home in Summerset, you will find yourself in Runnels. This sleepy town is home to a very interesting doggie paradise -- Rover’s Ranch. Rover’s Ranch is primarily a dog boarding facility that also has a very large, completely fenced-in dog park. The park is complete with water pools, trees and toys! However, you mutts remember this is a boarding facility first so you will be expected to pay a small fee to use the park. But trust us, even though you will have to pay, you can rest easy knowing there are always professionals around to help, and all the dogs have been vaccinated.