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The small town of Park Hills is nestled in a landscape that once was heavily mined for lead. Dangerous lead no longer poses a threat, and the town has some healthy outdoor activities for people with a pup. Two veterinary clinics supply routine and emergency care. The town also has three city parks which offer green spots for outdoor exercise for a person with a leashed pup.
Columbia Park has five pavilions, picnic sites, a gazebo, an outdoor amphitheater, and an 18-hole disc golf course. The pavilions can be rented for free and make for a great spot for family get-togethers or parties. More intensive outdoor experiences can be had at St. Joe State Park. This 8,000-acre park has a campground, fishing spots, and four hiking trails. Missouri State Parks welcome dogs as long as they are kept on a leash no longer than ten feet.
The state park has four trails which range in length from 1.25 miles to 12.6 miles. Lakeview Trail is the shortest of the trails and is rated easy. Two-tenths of the trail is paved, and benches provide a place to rest and contemplate the beauty of Monsanto Lake, one of the four lakes in the park. Pine Ridge Trail is the longest trail and takes hikers through hardwood forests and across small creeks. This trail includes a backpack camp for some primitive camping with a four-legged buddy. These trails are mixed-use, so people with pups should be on the lookout for mountain bikers and horses on their treks through the woods.
Farmington City Center is located 9 miles south of Park Hills. Farmington Dog Park adds more "wow" to your Bow Wow's day! This dog park has 25,000 square feet of grass in the large dog area and 12,500 square feet in the small dog section. Dogs can run up and down ramps and jump over and under a variety of agility equipment. Benches keep the people content, and water fountains make it okay to forget that water bottle. Waste bags make it super easy to keep the place tidy. This gem of a dog park is open from sunrise until sunset. It is free and open to the public.
Fredericktown is located 27 miles south of Park Hills and is a great place to visit if you are traveling with your furry family member. Madison Inn Lodge at 730 Plaza Drive welcomes guests with up to two dogs of any size for an additional fee of $15 per dog per night. Take your best buddy with you out to eat at one of Fredericktown's dog-friendly restaurants.The Pig BBQ serves succulent spare ribs, burgers, and a variety of entrees. Two outdoor tables will make you and your four-legged companion comfortable while dining. Mexican fare is served up at Lalo's Mexican Grill. Some spicy, traditional Mexican eats can be enjoyed with your pup at the outdoor patio tables.
Ste. Genevieve is located 37 miles east of Park Hills. The community pulled together to create the Fleur de Lis Dog Park. This dog park began as an Eagle Scout project and has become a hub for area dogs to get out and have some leash-free fun. The town donated used scraps, like tires and drainage pipes, and with paint and creativity made an eye-catching and tail-waggin' puppy playground! Tunnels, ramps, and old tires give dogs an obstacle course to play in. Dogs of all sizes play in a single grassy area. One yellow bench gives people a place to park and watch their pup have a blast. The dog park does not have water on-site, so make sure to bring some.
Herculaneum is located 37 miles north of Park Hills. All Bark Village gives dogs a chance to run and play with canine pals leash-free. This fully-fenced, mostly grassy enclosure includes a separate area for small dogs. A pavilion gives people a place to sit out of the sun and watch their furry family member have fun. Water fountains have a dog bowl at the base and are also designed to fill up water bottles. Hoses make it easy to cool a pup down, fill up a kiddie pool, or give that hard-playing dog a good rinse before heading home. This dog park is free and open to the public.
Arnold is located 48 miles north of Park Hills. The city of Arnold has two Paw Parks for dogs to exercise and play leash-free. One of them is located at City Park and the other is at Ferd B. Lang Park. The Paw Parks have the same design and amenities. The grassy space is fully fenced and includes a separately fenced section for small dogs. Water is available on-site. People can relax on shaded benches while waiting for their Max or Molly to tire out. Waste stations are stocked with doggie waste baggies to make those necessary clean-ups a snap. The Paw Parks are free and open to the public.
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