Shelton, Connecticut was founded by the British in 1639, nearly twenty years before the Connecticut colony was officially formed, and over 100 years before Connecticut became a state. Today, Shelton is a small town of fewer than 40,000 people. It's a quiet, suburban town, living in the shadow of Yale University, which is only ten miles away.
More than being a suburban town, Shelton is a New England town. By which we mean that the town has a quaint town center, some beautiful bed and breakfasts, and a lovely dog park, which is paired next to a nature trail. The Shelton Dog Park is just over two acres, divided into two fenced areas, one for small dogs under twenty-five pounds, and one for larger sized dogs.
The park is grassy but is in a heavily wooded area, so there are plenty of places that are dusty and muddy. The county and the Shelton Conservation Commission do a great job at keeping the park in good shape, including making sure that the park is free from leaves in the autumn.
The park also has dog bags and fountains, as well as some benches. In addition, the large dog enclosure has boulders, a large downed log, and other play equipment. The Shelton Dog Park is next to the Shelton Lake Recreation Trail, which is over four miles of paved trails through the Connecticut woods.
Leashed dogs are welcome on the trail, but be advised that there are no poop bags, trash cans, or water fountains, so please come prepared. Also, be mindful of the fact that you will share the trail with joggers, walkers, and bicycles.
Both the recreation trail and the Shelton Dog Park are examples of New England civic pride. The trail and the park are maintained and managed by the county, but they were both built by volunteers. Local citizens not only donated millions of dollars but thousands of hours in literal manual labor.
The Shelton Dog Park and the Shelton Recreation Trail are both the results of a labor of love, and it shows. A visit to the Shelton Dog Park is a great way to experience a New England autumn. For that matter, you can enjoy it at any time of the year.