Just 20 minutes from downtown Minneapolis, and 30 minutes from downtown Saint Paul, Dayton is a growing community located at the confluence of the Crow and Mississippi Rivers. This small city, which welcomes growth while preserving its rural character, offers a number of parks for its residents and visitors to enjoy. There are no animal clinics in Dayton, but the closest facility is only a 7-minute drive away in nearby Rogers.
Situated near the Dayton City Office, Central Park is a great place to take your four-legged pal for a leashed walk. Your pup's tail will definitely be wagging as you explore the large, grassy areas. The park also contains a playground, ice skating rink, and multiple athletic fields, making it a fun, family-friendly destination.
For a peaceful, relaxing stroll away from the crowds, head to the Donahue Dells Park. Tucked in the east side of town between rows of houses, this park features a children's playground and small pond that you and Fido can walk around.
Wherever you go with your pooch, always keep them on a leash and bring doggie waste bags to clean up after them. Come experience the small-town side of the Twin Cities muttropolitan area in Dayton!
Dayton's historic village is home to two parks where you can spend some quality time with your pupper. McNeil Park, formerly known as Historic Village Park, offers grassy areas for strolling around and picnic tables for sharing a packed lunch with your pooch. It contains a ball field and playground equipment as well. Less than a mile away, Goodin Park is a mostly wooded site with few amenities other than grills and benches. There's also a trail that leads down to the Mississippi River, so you and Fido can take a leashed walk by the water and enjoy the peaceful views.
Take your best friend on a riverside outing at the Cloquet Overlook Park! Nestled on the shores of the Mississippi River, this small park features paved trails that weave around grassy areas, as well as a scenic overlook where you and Fido can admire the scenery. If you'd like to get closer to the water, go to either end of the park to access the riverfront trail. This unpaved path will take you and your pup through a wooded area and alongside the Mississippi River. Multiple benches and picnic areas are scattered around the park, too, so bring tasty snacks and treats!
Riversbend residents love their neck of the woods for being safe and close to the Mississippi River. In this quiet and friendly neighborhood, you can take your pooch for a leashed stroll at the Rivers Bend Park. While there are no walking trails in this park, it offers an open grassy space for your doggo to sniff and explore. You and Fido will most likely encounter young families having fun at the playground when you stop by here. Unique and visually appealing, the playground includes shadow play panels and a zip line that's popular among kids and kids at heart.
Should you and Fido find yourselves in the northwest part of neighboring Champlin, you can stretch your legs and get some exercise at three parks on or near the Mississipi River. About 6 miles from Dayton, the Donie Galloway Park features trails, natural areas, and open fields for your furry buddy to explore. This 72-acre site also contains a picnic area and 9-hole disc golf course. The Paul Wethern Park, while smaller at 3 acres, is also a furrific place to go for a walk with your pooch as it is usually quiet and uncrowded. Also check out the 2-acre Heights Park, which has a walking path around a small pond.
Let your energetic pupper run and play to their heart's content at the Elm Creek Dog Off-Leash Area! About 11 miles southeast of Dayton, this fenced-in dog park is located within the expansive Elm Creek Park Reserve and covers 29 acres, giving canines more than enough room to romp and interact with other doggos. In addition to open fields, the Elm Creek Dog Off-Leash Area contains a separate section for small and frail pooches, numerous trails to explore, and a fenced wetland pond for swimming and cooling off. Be sure to purchase your daily or annual pass before heading over to the dog park!