Don’t leave that furry fella at home when you head out for your next adventure. From arboretum exploration to dinning out at a little yappy hour, Minnesota promises no shortage of opportunities for your pup to get out and play with you. The best places to take a doggy day trip offer playtime galore for both you and your pup.
14250 Conservation Drive
Brainerd, MN 56401
Price: $15 per student/$25 per individual/$35 per family
The Northland Arboretum, a non profit organization that focuses on nature and community involvement, also welcomes pets. With nearly 20 kilometers of trail on more than 500 acres, the arboretum provides a relaxing setting for hiking or mountain biking in the summer and also skiing and snow shoeing (if your pet is up to it) in the winter. Dogs are permitted on the trails but must be leashed at all times. The trails are open from sun up to sun down throughout the year including after hours, when hikers may simply leave payments in a drop box.
Minneapolis Sculpture Garden
Walker Art Center
1750 Hennepin Ave.
Minneapolis, MN 55403
If you enjoy art and sculpture and want to get the pup out for a good sniff, stroll through the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, located on Vineland across from the Walker Art Center. Dogs must remain leashed throughout the garden, and you will want to make sure you bring doggy bags to clean up after your pet. Dogs are not allowed in the conservatory but are welcome to peruse almost every other area in the 11-acre garden.
Duluth City Hall
411 W 1st St
Duluth, MN 55802
Duluth Lakewalk stretches from 27th Avenue East to Bayfront Festival Park near downtown Duluth along the shore of Lake Superior. You and your pets are free to stroll past the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center complex, the Great Lakes Aquarium and Bayfront Festival Park. The City of Duluth provides “mutt mitts” along the Lakewalk for assistance in cleaning up after pets who are permitted on leashes no longer than six feet.
1741 Premier Dr
Mankato, MN 56001
Price: $10 per dog
The Paw in Mankato provides boarding and daycare services, rehabilitation, training and spa-like grooming services that include full-service scissor cuts and the Furminator Anti-Shedding Treatment. Dogs in need of a relaxing day trip will enjoy The Paw’s Surf ‘n Turf Sundays and Pool Party Thursdays. Surf ‘n Turf Sundays allow pets to doggy paddle in the swimming pool and romp throughout the indoor and outdoor play areas. Pool Party Thursdays includes unlimited use of the indoor heated pool and are scheduled to resume by winter of 2012.
Luce Line State Trail
Metro Area Trails and Waterways
1200 Warner Road
St. Paul, MN 55106
For a great workout and solid change of scenery, head out on a hike with your furry friend. The Luce Line State Trail, one of 1,600 rail trails, is a dog friendly option maintained by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Trails are made up of limestone, gravel and granite, depending upon where you choose to play. Dogs may hike alongside bikers, hikers and joggers across 63 miles of trail from Plymouth to Cosmos.
Christina Majaski is a full-time legal assistant and freelance writer for online and print publications. She has an obsession for all things related to social media and invites you to follow along with her on Twitter @cmajaski. She currently resides with her daughter in central Minnesota. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.