The city of Cleveland, Ohio is one of the most well-known cities in America and the largest city on Lake Erie.
Pets, and specifically dogs, are a big part of daily life in Cleveland, and the city is relatively pet-friendly, with lots of accessible attractions for both pets and their owners, including the off-leash dog parks we have described in some detail below.
Collectively, the Cleveland parks we have highlighted below are a great addition to their respective neighborhoods, additions that quickly tend to become regular gathering places for nearby pet owners; a place to share the daily ups and downs of pet parenthood.
The below list is anything but exhaustive, as there are literally scores of great parks in the region that welcome dogs.
Here is just a sampling of some of the best dog parks in and around the city of Cleveland.
Lakewood Dog Park
Located at 1699 Valley Parkway in the nearby town of Lakewood, Ohio, the Lakewood Dog Park has been serving pets and their owners since its opening in 2003.
In that time, hundreds, even thousands of local residents and visitors have used this free park as a place to ensure proper fitness for their dogs.
Very popular among the local residents, the Lakewood Dog Park encompasses just less than an acre in total area.
The park is completely fenced in for the protection of the animals, and instead of having grass or dirt as its ground medium, this park’s floor is comprised totally of light gravel.
This decision not only gives the park a glistening and clean feel, it also allows it to stay open on rainy days and immediately thereafter, a time when most other dog parks are forced to close due to the mess that weather tends to cause.
The Lakewood Dog Park is located across from the marina area in the Metroparks, and just south of the Emerald Necklace.
The general upkeep and supervision of the park are conducted entirely by volunteers, and the atmosphere here is always friendly and collegial.
There are benches outside the park that serve as viewing perches, and pet waste bags hang neatly above each trash disposal site.
All in all, this is a great park to visit when in the Lakewood region, and because of its makeup, you’ll never have to worry about muddy paws on the ride home.
Clark Field Dog Park
Another dog park that is maintained entirely by volunteers (Friends of Clark Field) is the Clark Field Dog Park.
This park, which is a bit small when compared to most off-leash facilities, is located at the corner of West 11th Street and Clark Avenue.
This location, in the near west Tremont neighborhood, makes it very accessible to those who live or work near downtown or close to Ohio City.
It also serves as a big bonus for Tremont residents who own pets.
Close to one acre in size, the Clark Field Dog Park offers plenty of room for Rex and Fido to run and play together, untethered by any leash.
Like the Lakewood Dog Park, this park also has a loose gravel base and is a lot less messy than grass and dirt dog runs.
Owners are free to enter the fenced off-leash zone for a game of fetch or obedience lessons, but most choose to sit down and relax on the shaded benches that are provided for their convenience.
The dog park is surrounded on all sides by baseball/softball diamonds, making it a great place to catch a game while your dog burns off some excess energy.
Bow Wow Beach Dog Park
The name of this next park on our list—the Bow Wow Beach Dog Park—leaves very little to the imagination as to what exactly it is.
Situated at 5015 Stow Road in the town of Stow, Ohio, the Bow Wow Beach Dog Park is one of the largest in the area, measuring nearly 8 acres in total area.
You won’t find gravel at this beautiful park, but rather a mixture of grass and beach sand—and lots of it.
Whether your dog likes to meander and socialize or run at top speed, there is more than enough room for both at this gorgeous beachside park.
A good-sized lake borders the Bow Wow Beach Dog Park.
This makes it perfect for dogs (and their owners) who like to mix in a little swimming into their exercise regimen.
Areas not bordered by the lake are completely fenced-in to prevent escape attempts.
There are pet waste stations and waste bags available, as well as drinking water for dogs and their owners.
Picnic tables and benches are provided, and while the park is (generally) free to the public, there is staff on hand to collect donations, 100-percent of which goes to park upkeep, maintenance and the cost of the provided poop bags.
For a fun day in the sun with your best four-legged pal, nothing beats the Bow Wow Beach Dog Park.
Memorial Dog Park
Finally, if you find yourself due south of Cleveland about 30 miles, you should really check out Memorial Dog Park, located on East Homestead Drive in the nearby community of Medina, Ohio.
The off-leash play zone that was created here is essentially a park within a park—the larger Memorial Park.
This means you can enjoy all the benefits of an expansive park experience—the shade, picnic tables and playground for the kids—all while entertaining and exercising your dog.
The completely-fenced Memorial Dog Park, as well as the benches outside the facility, are almost completely shrouded in shade.
This makes the park a great option on those warm and humid Midwestern days.
Inside the play zone, dogs will find lots of extras to keep them busy, including agility equipment and a medium-sized water fountain, the latter added to help keep dogs cool and hydrated.
It is open from dawn to dusk, seven days a week—the same hours observed by patrons of the larger Memorial Park.