Finding a calming place to take a nice stroll with Fido is an easy task in the friendly town of Griffith, Indiana. As part of the Chicago Metropolitan Area, Griffith residents enjoy the "Hoosier" lifestyle that makes many residents — both four-legged and two — call this place their home. The local Griffith community gets together for all kinds of annual events, like the Broad Street Blues & BBQ Festival, Griffith Oktober Fest, and Rock N' Rail Music Festival — all scattered around one of Griffith's many public parks. Also, every Friday, May through September, you and Fido can head to Central Park for the Central Market. The market features live music, craft beer, and artisan food trucks and vendors.
Dog owners adore living in the bucolic neighborhoods of Griffith! They have everything they need here to keep their dogs safe, fed, and happy. You'll find a veterinarian and animal hospital right within the town limits. Pet owners can also take their dog to one of the 8 parks, 3 dog-friendly restaurants, and local groomer all within Griffith limits. On the peripherals of the town are nature reserves and two scenic trails to explore. If you head northwest, you can find a fenced-in dog park just outside of Griffith. This is the place to raise a family, doggos included!
Is your dog always up for a long hike through the wilderness? If you live along Jay Ave in Griffith, then you have quick access to the trailhead entering into Oak Savannah Trail. The trail begins in the Oak Ridge Prairie Park and continues for 8.4 miles, winding along the park's trees and wildlife. Along the way, you can see badgers, cottontail rabbits, and maybe even a bobcat! Don't worry, Fido's there to protect you. Plus, these animals are more afraid of you than you are of them! The rail-trail is asphalt, so you might need to bring doggie booties for Fido if he has sensitive paws.
Does your dog love to be the center of attention? If your dog rolls over on his back on cue for everyone's adoration, then he'll feel right at home in the Griffith Highland neighborhood. The neighborhood hosts Central Park, which acts as the center of town and is where all the events are held. Also in the neighborhood is the 17.7-mile trail called The Erie Lackawanna Trail. This rail-trail is good to hike in small segments with your dog. Along the way, you'll see breathtaking views of the foliage and hike over bridges that traverse across glistening creeks.
Does your dog love playing with the other local "Hoosier" pups? About an hour's drive outside of the Homestead neighborhood, you'll find the Wicker Memorial Dog Park. On the verdant green turf of this park is where your pup can play with other dogs. The dog park is fenced to keep everyone safe. You'll need to get your dog registered to play, but it's well worth it to use the facilities. Also in the neighborhood is Zel's Roast Beef — a dog-friendly restaurant where you can get all beef hot dogs, Polish sausages, and, of course, mouth-watering roast beef. Bring your appetite and your dog!
Does your dog love walking in the grass and sniffing out the neighbor dogs? Then the place to take him is Panther Park in the East Highland neighborhood. Panther Park is a lively place for a relaxing walk in the grass. There are picnic areas, benches, restrooms, a 5-mile bike trail, and plenty of open field areas for a great game of fetch. During the summer months, the city will set up horseshoe pits for the locals to play with. This park is pawsitively wonderful! Just remember to keep your pup on a leash while you're here, and bring some waste bags with you.
Does your dog love a good Chicago-style pie? If you load up Fido in the car and head about 30 minutes east, you'll find the pet-friendly J&J's Pizza Shack. This local favorite serves specialties like The Kitchen Sink, which has every topping imaginable. You can also order a Texas "Bark-B-Q" pizza, Beef Boat Toppings, or a Crispy French Bread Pizza. The best part about J&J's is that your dog is more than welcome to hang out with you as you chow down on some delicious, party-sized pizzas. Maybe if your dog gets lucky, he'll get a bite of the crust!