Does my pet need to be on a leash?
Your pet needs to be physically restrained, meaning you must be holding them, holding onto their collar, or have them on a leash no longer than six feet. Exceptions:
Keep them leashed. Keep them safe.
Leashing your pet prevents them from tangling with wild animals or other people’s pets, getting lost, ransacking campground garbage, damaging plant life, or being hit by a car. It also avoids a citation!
Can my pet run free on the beach?
Generally, yes. Pets are welcome on most ocean beaches, however they must be leashed if you are within the boundaries of a state park and a leash carried with you at all times on the beach. Beyond those areas, leashes are not required although they must be under direct control (within sight and responsive to commands). You should have a leash ready in case you’re asked to restrain your pet by a park employee.
If you choose to allow your dog to run free on the ocean shores, you are still responsible for their behavior so please make sure they are not interfering with others’ recreational enjoyment or harassing seabirds or other wildlife. And, please pick up and remove dog waste from the beach.
Pets are not permitted on some beaches or at certain times of the year (even on a leash) to protect wildlife, such as western snowy plovers. Snowy plover nesting areas are restricted areas from March 15-Sept. 15. Look for restricted beach access information at bit.ly/wsplover. Follow rules posted at beach accesses and signs posted in the sand.
Are there areas where pets are not allowed?
Yes. Pets (even on a leash) are not allowed:
What are my responsibilities?
Keep parks and beaches doodie free! You’re responsible for picking up after your pet. Look for waste disposal bags at Woof Waste stations in many parks. Please make sure pets are calm during quiet hours (10 p.m.-7 a.m.). In general, you’re responsible for your pet’s behavior, including any noises and aggressive actions. Remember that you’re liable—not the park—if your pet injures someone. Don’t tie them up where they might react defensively to a child or other unsuspecting visitor while you’re away from your site.
What should I bring with me?
A leash, food and water, and extra waste disposal bags. We also strongly recommend putting a collar and identification tag on your pet so you can be contacted if they get loose and someone finds them.
Do you recommend any dog friendly state parks?
With more than 200 state park areas, it can be a bit overwhelming to know where to go. So, we — the dog lovers of Oregon State Parks — have assembled our list of the best state parks for dogs.
On the Coast
South Beach State Park: It’s like dog-city at this campground just south of Newport, which features 14 pet-friendly yurts, more than any other state campground. We also like it for its proximity to pet-friendly Gleneden Beach nearby. Because what dog doesn’t love to run free on the beach? (Just make sure she’s reliable at recall).
Tugman State Park: For a less crowded camping experience, travel south to Reedsport. Located on peaceful Eel Lake, the campground features 8 pet-friendly yurts and an off-leash dog area. Do like the locals and find a dog-friendly swimming hole along the North Eel Lake and South Eel Lake trails.
Molalla River State Park: This day-use park at the confluence of the Willamette, Molalla and Pudding Rivers feels so peaceful, you’ll never guess you’re just outside the city. Fluffy will enjoy romping in the large, grassy unfenced off-leash area, or take her hiking with you on the easy 2-mile out-and-back trail that follows the Willamette River and farmland.
Stub Stewart State Park: Muddy pups are happy pups, and Muffin is sure to get good and muddy while exploring more than 30 miles of trails and a fenced off-leash dog area at this popular campground west of Portland. You can both clean up after a day well-spent at the convenient rinse station. (Be sure to watch for mountain bikes and horses on the trails.)
Willamette Mission State Park: An un-fenced off-leash dog area and tons of trails make for a dog-centric day-trip north of Salem. (Note that you’ll share the trails with horses and mountain bikes.)
Collier Memorial State Park: Need to recharge? This quiet campground north of Klamath Falls is definitely worth the drive. Hike for miles along the Williamson River, then cool off in the swimming holes on Spring Creek.
Elijah Bristow State Park: This day-use park southeast of Eugene might be Oregon’s doggie Disney Land. You won’t find any Disney characters, but you will find five miles of trails plus an expansive, grassy off-leash area divided in two sections: one fully fenced with drinking water, and the other partially fenced.
Central and Eastern Oregon
Cottonwood Canyon State Park: Although this park has plenty of trails, the fenced-in, off-leash area is a perfect place for your dog to explore. Two of the four new cabins are pet friendly and reservable, too.
Emigrant Springs State Heritage Area: Does your dog love snow? Near Pendleton, this campground offers year-round fun. The white stuff blankets the park in the winter, and the three pet-friendly cabins are oh-so-cozy. Hike (or snowshoe) for miles on uncrowded trails, but do watch for horses.
LaPine State Park: This unpretentious campground south of Bend makes a great home base for exploring Newberry National Volcanic Monument. Just be sure Sparky is good and tired first. He can run free in a fenced off-leash area or hike with you on 12 miles of dog-friendly trails, including the 3.5-mile Deschutes Loop that follows the river (but watch for mountain bikes).
Are pets allowed inside park buildings?
Unless otherwise specified, no with the exception of service animals (see “What are the rules for service animals” below). Pets are welcome in designated pet-friendly yurts and cabins.
What are the rules for service animals?
In keeping with the Americans with Disabilities Act, a service animal is defined as a dog that is trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability. Providing emotional support or deterring crime are not considered qualifying tasks. Except under special conditions, service animals must also be restrained while in state parks.
Where can I learn more about pets in parks rules, violations and fines?
The rules about domestic animals in parks are found in Oregon Administrative Rules, specifically Division 10 General Park Area Rules 736-010-0030 Domestic Animals.