As a national monument established in 1909 by President Taft, the Oregon Caves are a popular attraction in Southern Oregon. Tours inside the Oregon Caves are open late March through early November each year, with the exception of any days with inclement weather conditions. The visitor's center and ticketing hours vary in the spring and late summer, so check the site for specific hours before your visit. With the cave's popularity, wait times during the summer can be long. Making reservations online ahead of time is a good idea.
The cave tour itself is not open to pets (including service animals) or children smaller than 42” tall. This is because the trails can be difficult to navigate and poses safety hazards. The caverns also host a highly sensitive ecosystem that can be easily disrupted and disturbed, which is why visitors are restricted from touching the caverns or bringing in backpacks, large purses, or any clothing previously worn in caves or mines (white-nose syndrome is a fungal infection that kills 90% of bats, and is carried into the cave from clothes or shoes previously exposed).
Outside of the caverns, trails are open year-round. But pets are only permitted generally where cars are permitted: on roads and parking lots. Dogs aren’t allowed on any of the hiking trails, bodies of water, or inside the visitor center or other park facilities. They must be kept on a leash no more than six feet in length at all times.
Pet owners should also practice common courtesy and clean up after their pets and keep them under control. You aren’t permitted to tether your dog outside, but you can leave your dog in your car, as long as the weather permits and it’s not hazardous to your pet. If your pet appears to be in distress, owners can receive a citation.
There are nearby boarding facilities where you can take your dog ahead of time, rather than leaving your dog in the car and risking health problems or citations. Additionally, if you’re visiting the Oregon Caves, there are other nearby places you can take your pet.
Cave Creek Campground isn’t far from the caves and is pet-friendly, however, dogs are not permitted on the Cave Creek Trail. There are also several other parks and campgrounds near the caves or accessible from Highway 199.
While not very pet-friendly, the Oregon Caves National Monument is still a can’t-miss attraction in Southern Oregon.