Avon Lake is a prosperous bedroom community for metropolitan Cleveland, and its safety and the area’s natural beauty means you’ll never run out of outdoor fun for your fur family. This metropolitan area of almost 23,000 occupies a small promontory into Lake Erie a half-hour drive due west of Cleveland. With so much to do near Avon Lake, though, your pups might skip the commute downtown.
Much of the city has excellent sidewalks, so it’s easy to get in some quick walkies wherever you are. The city’s urban trail network provides incentive to push on a little farther, too. You could spend a whole morning in leafy Belle Park and then catch the Gable Ditch Trail north to Sunset Park or the South Loop Trail for an easy roundtrip.
This close to Lake Erie, though, your pack will probably want to get in a quick splash! The 23-acre Bleser Park on the waterfront is a great spot for a lakeside stroll or picnic. Note that dogs aren’t allowed on the human swimming beaches, but don’t worry: there’s plenty of lake to explore.
It’s easy to stay fit and frisky in Avon Lake. PetPeople, a local chain of natural pet food stores with a storefront in Avon, carries a wide range of premium food and toys. There are also two veterinary practices in Avon Lake and almost a dozen within a 20-minute drive.
Weiss Field is home to Avon Lake’s public dog park with fenced areas for off-leash play. Though small, the park offers a waste station, seasonal running water, and a climbing ramp. As the park is free and unmonitored, the city just asks that owners keep a close eye on the safety of their own pups. (Hey, you know those fur-babies would do the same for you.) If your pack needs more space to explore, wind your way around the ballfields of Weiss Park, though please note that dogs aren’t allowed on the fields themselves. Then, grab a bench or a sunny patch of grass and watch your neighbors catch some air at the skate park.
Miller Road Park in the northwest corner of Avon Lake offers a lovely view of the waterfront with a half-mile paved walking trail, a pier, and lots of squirrels. Dogs aren’t welcome in the water at the human swimming hole — we know, we know — but there’s plenty of room for canine splashing on either side. For a little more lakefront access, continue a few miles west on Highway 6 to Shell Cove Park, a smaller and quieter picnic spot on the water. Or, if quiet is what your pack wants, consider a walk in the woods in nearby Bicentennial Park: these undeveloped woods are small enough to explore without risk of getting lost but large enough to enjoy nature in total privacy.
If your pack likes to walk in the evenings, note the long opening hours for Cahoon Memorial Park in Bay Village, 6.5 miles from Avon Lake. This lakefront park has a walking trail with views of the water and the Cleveland skyline, plus fantastic grassy fields that, when not hosting the park’s many festivals, are ideal for a game of fetch. In winter, find out whether your pups have any sled dog potential on the slide-at-your-own-risk toboggan hill. Or, if you want a more natural setting, the Huntington Reservation Metro Park adjoins Cahoon and provides an additional 3.5 miles of nature trails and beachfront walking.
The City of Lorain is just 10 miles west of Lake Avon and home to stunning lakeside and riverside parks. Whether you’re on two feet or four, they’ll carry you all over Lorain on the excellent trail network. The Black River Reservation’s Cromwell Park has a trailhead for the new 2-mile Black River Trail, which winds through Cromwell to the Steel Mill Trail on Colorado Avenue, which in turn leads to the Bridgeway Trail and Day’s Dam for a total of 5.5 paved miles of riverside walking. You’ll find an additional 4.5 miles of trail and 425 acres of lush scenery at the nearby French Creek Reservation, although the dirt and gravel trails may be less inviting for tender paws.
The largest off-leash play area near Avon Lake is in Lakewood, about 12 miles east. The Lakewood Dog Park in the Valley View neighborhood has been named metro-Cleveland's best dog park, so you and your fur family should really check it out! Though the regulars wish that the grassy area had a bit more grass, they love the tennis balls and sizable fenced yard. Pet parents are asked to keep careful watch over their dogs, as the park is not monitored. The park is located within Rocky River Reservation, part of the Cleveland Metro Park system, so there’s plenty of riverside fields and trails to explore back on-leash. If Spot is a very good boy at the park, you can even stop for a treat at Pet’s General Store just a few blocks away.