Boston is a city known for its rich history and famous baked beans. This New England city sits on Massachusetts Bay, giving city-dwellers scenic views as they go about their everyday activities.
Boston also happens to be super dog friendly, with many dog-friendly activities in Boston and plenty of parks to peruse with your pooch.
Below, we’ll share some of the best dog parks Boston has to offer. We’ll also explain a couple key considerations to keep in mind while searching for the perfect park for Fido.
The 11 Best Dog Parks In Boston
Without further ado, here are some of the best dog parks you’ll find in Boston. Have fun exploring these dog-friendly destinations with your best buddy in Beantown.
All of these parks are wonderful places to visit with your wagger, but they don’t all allow off-leash fun.
We just wanted you and your pooch to have plenty of options, so make sure you select a park that offers the kind of fun you and your four-footer want!
1. Peters Park
Looking for a secure spot to let your pooch roam free? Peters Park is a fenced-in park located in the South End with separate play areas for large and small pups. The double-gated entrances ensure that even Houdini hounds stay safe. This gravel-covered park has rocks for your pooch to explore and plenty of benches for humans.
- Area/Burrow: Peter’s Park is located in South End.
- Link to Site: http://www.peterspark.org
- Phone Number: (617) 635-4505
- Open Hours: 6:00 AM to 11:30 PM
- Size: This park spans 13,000 square feet.
- This pooch park has plenty of shade so it’s a good pick during the warmer months.
- The small dog area really means small! It is restricted to pups under 15 pounds.
2. Carleton Court Dog Park
Searching for a simple, secure city escape? This dog park in the South End may be the perfect place for your pooch. The concrete dog park won’t lead to muddy paws, and it’s an excellent place for Spot to socialize. This park has a double entry gate and tall fences along with fresh water for Fido.
- Area/Burrow: Carleton Court Dog Park is located in South End.
- Link to Site: https://m.facebook.com/pg/carletoncourtdogpark/about/
- Phone Number: (617) 635-4505
- Open Hours: 6:30 AM to 10:00 PM
- Size: The exact size is not published anywhere we can find, but it’s essentially a couple of tennis courts that’ve been converted to a dog park.
- This park doesn’t have separate area for small dogs.
3. Boston Common
The Boston Common is one of the most popular places for city-goers to get a break from the madness. This lush park is made for exploration with your four-footer, with plenty of grass, trees, and other pups to greet. There’s also a dedicated off-leash area for your dog to do as he pleases. Boston Common visitors can bring up to three dogs per adult, but every owner needs to have a leash on-hand for each four-footer — even within the off-leash areas.
- Area/Burrow: Boston Common is in Downtown Boston.
- Link to Site: https://friendsofthepublicgarden.org/our-parks/the-common/common-canine/
- Phone Number: 617-723-8144
- Open Hours: 6:00 AM to 11:00 PM
- Size: Boston Common spans 50 acres.
- Note that only some sections of Boston Common are off-leash. The off-leash section rotates to preserve grass over time. That’s actually a pretty nifty management technique, as it not only protects the lawn, but it also gives your pooch different places to explore over time.
- The park isn’t secured by a full fence, so you’ll need to make sure your pooch has a firm grasp on his “come” command. Honestly, it may not be the best option for floofs without a strong recall.
4. RUFF North End Dog Park
If your pooch is seeking a little adventure, it’s worth checking out this hidden gem in the North End. RUFF North End Dog Park provides plenty of waste stations, lighting, benches, and room for Fido to run around. There’s also a couple of obstacles for your dog to interact with, so it’s a great place to burn off some excess energy. Plus, there are separate sections for dogs over and under 25 pounds.
- Area/Burrow: RUFF North End Dog Park is in the North End.
- Link to Site: https://www.ruffboston.org/visit
- Phone Number: (781) 816-9501
- Open Hours: This park is open 6:00 AM to 9:00 PM.
- Size: We can’t find the precise dimensions of this park anywhere, but it is somewhere in the couple-of-tennis-courts ballpark. You can see a significant portion of the park in the photo above.
- There aren’t any doggie water bowls on-site so you’ll need to make sure you pack a water bottle for your pooch.
- There’s a water play area available in the summer, so be sure to bring some towels.
5. The Esplanade
Looking for a lush city escape? The Esplanade is certainly worth considering, as this large green space features plenty of paths for you and your four-footer to enjoy. While you’ll need to keep Fido on leash, the park will provide plenty of scenic views to keep you thoroughly entertained while strolling alongside the river. There are public benches and restrooms, though you’ll need to make sure you have plenty of poop bags, as they aren’t provided by the park.
- Area/Burrow: This green space lines Back Bay East.
- Link to Site: https://esplanade.org
- Phone Number: (617) 227-0365
- Open Hours: This park is open 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM.
- Size: This massive green space is kind of narrow, but stretches for about 3 miles along the Charles River.
- This park is frequented by runners and cyclists, so you want to make sure your pooch can handle the extra stimuli.
6. South Boston Bark Park
South Boston Bark Park is a large, fenced-in area covered in gravel for your four-footer. In addition to providing plenty of space for exercise, this off-leash park has tunnels and rocks to keep your pooch entertained. While there are a couple of benches, this spot can have quite a few visitors on the weekend, so you may have to stand while supervising your furry best friend. This park has a double-gated entry to keep your pooch protected.
- Area/Burrow: This park is in Telegraph Hill.
- Link to Site: http://www.sbbarkpark.org
- Phone Number: (617) 536-4100
- Open Hours: The park is open from 6:00 AM to 8:00 PM.
- Size: The exact size of this park is not published anywhere, but it is very roughly 1/4 of a city block in size.
- This fenced-in park doesn’t have a ton of shade, so you’ll want to take that into consideration during the warmer months.
7. Deer Island
If your hound is an amazing hiking buddy, it’s worth making the trip to Deer Island. This Boston Harbor island has plenty of trails and greenspace for Fido to explore on leash. You and your pooch will enjoy hiking along the island and taking in the beautiful views of the Boston skyline. Make sure you pack plenty of water, waste bags, and use the restroom before heading out to this serene spot, as amenities are limited.
- Area/Burrow: Deer Island is in Winthrop, MA though it’s accessible by public transportation.
- Link to Site: https://www.bostonharborislands.org/deer-island/
- Phone Number: (617) 223-8666
- Open Hours: The walkways are open from sunrise to sunset.
- Size: The area open to the public spans about 5 miles.
- This park is known for being super clean and having well maintained paths. It’s a good pick for puppies who aren’t quite ready to dive into a super social dog park.
8. Paul Revere Park
Paul Revere Park is a great place for dogs to explore off-leash, so long as they’ve mastered their recall ability as the outer perimeter does have a few gaps. This park provides a large, grassy open area for dogs to socialize while enjoying views of the Bunker Hill memorial bridge. Note that there aren’t a lot of benches or waste stations, so be sure to pack accordingly.
- Area/Burrow: This park is located at Bunker Hill.
- Link to Site: https://www.boston.gov/departments/parks-and-recreation
- Phone Number: (617) 626-1250
- Open Hours: This park is open 24 hours a day.
- Size: This park spans 5 acres.
- Though this park is advertised as “fenced-in”, there are plenty of sections with gaps. Your pooch should have an impeccable recall ability to play off-leash in this park.
9. Zero New Washington Street
This pooch park is a bit far from the city center (so be sure you’re ready for the car trip with your canine), but it’s well worth the effort to get there. The well-maintained park is fenced in, so Fido can roam free off leash. Notably, the park offers an agility course, pooch poop bags, and plenty of seating for humans. There’s also a gazebo for Spot to catch some shade in the hot summer months.
- Area/Burrow: This park is located in Somerville, MA.
- Link to Site: https://www.facebook.com/Zero-New-Washington-Street-Dog-Park-250376731648656/
- Phone Number: (617) 625-6600
- Open Hours: This park is open 24 hours a day.
- Size: This park’s exact size isn’t published anywhere, but it is pretty small. You can see almost the entire park in the photo above.
- This park is well-lit in the evening, so it’s a great place for Fido to burn-off some late night zoomies.
10. Danehy Park
Danehy Park features 50 acres of beautiful walking trails for you and your pooch to explore just across the river. There’s also a fenced-in dog park with separate sections for pint-sized pups and big best buddies. The park also has benches, waste stations, and water available for your four footer, though you should bring some with you anyhow so that you can enjoy all of Danehy Park’s grounds.
- Area/Burrow: The park is located in Cambridge, MA.
- Link to Site: https://www.cambridgema.gov/CDD/parks/osplanning/offleash
- Phone Number: (617) 874-1120
- Open Hours: The park is open from 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM.
- Size: This large park spans 50 acres though the off-leash area is much smaller.
- The park provides a number of toys like Frisbees and tennis balls in the off-leash, fenced-in area. But it might be best to steer clear from this area if your pooch struggles with resource guarding.
11. Giacobbe Dog Run
Looking for a secure area for Fido to get some energy out? Giacobbe Dog Run, previously known as Pemberton Street Dog Run, is a long, fenced-in area that’s perfect for fetch with your four-footer. The run provides plenty of tennis balls from the neighboring tennis courts and shaded area for your pooch to cool off in. Surrounding the run, there are a few paved trails for you and your four-footer to enjoy on-leash.
- Area/Burrow: This park is in Cambridge, MA.
- Link to Site: https://www.cambridgema.gov/CDD/Projects/Parks/pembertonstreetdogrun
- Phone Number: 617-349-4603
- Open Hours: This park is open from 6:00 AM to 9:00 PM.
- Size: This park’s exact size isn’t published anywhere we can find, but it is approximately half a city block in size.
- There’s limited seating at this location.
- You’ll need to bring your own water and waste bags for your furry family member.
What Should You Look For In A Dog Park?
Finding the best dog park for you and your pooch sometimes takes some effort, as they all offer different things. Here are a couple of factors to consider while selecting your dream dog park.
- Secure Fencing: Secure fencing is key, especially if your pooch hasn’t developed a reliable recall. Double gates for entry and exits can also help prevent escapes.
- Hydration for Your Hound: Parks that provide doggie water bowls or even a shallow pool for pups can help keep your canine feeling his best in the summer sun. While this is more important for hot-weather climates, like the dog parks in Austin, Texas, it’s still a big plus for any dog park – even those in cooler New England. Regardless of the park’s facilities, it’s important to pack plenty of water with you to keep your dog properly hydrated wherever you go.
- Room to Roam: Living in a city can be super exciting for your pooch, but it also has its drawbacks in terms of limited space. With that in mind, you’ll want to find a park that has plenty of room for your pooch to stretch out and enjoy himself.
- Comfy Substrate: Especially during the hot summer months, it’s important to find parks with comfortable substrate to play in like dog-friendly grass or mulch.
- Separate Sections: Having separate sections for small and larger dogs helps everyone stay safe. This makes it easy for pooches of all sizes to play with others of their own size, thereby keeping everyone safer.
- Waste Stations and Garbage Cans: You’ll need to have waste bags with you whenever you step out with your furry friend, but it’s extra convenient when your park of choice has waste stations of its own. Make sure your preferred park has garbage cans to dispose of your dog’s deposits too — you don’t want to carry a full poop bag around all day!
- People-Friendly Amenities: It’s always a good idea to choose parks with restrooms, benches, and plenty of shade to keep you comfortable while you watch over your canine companion.
- Good Lighting: If you plan on visiting the dog park after sundown, you’ll want to pick a well-lit area so you can monitor your mutt with ease. This is a particularly important consideration in the winter, when it gets dark really early in the evening.
- Convenient Hours: Some parks close earlier than others, so you’ll want to double-check the hours before heading out. Keep in mind that certain parks only allow off-leash play at defined times.
- Enforced Rules: Posted and enforced rules keep everyone safe while playing at the park. You’ll want to read up on the park’s rules before letting your best buddy run free at the park.
- Consider Other Social Factors: Other factors worth considering include noise level, general atmosphere, and how responsible other owners are at a particular park. It’s a good idea to “read the room” (so to speak) before letting your floof run free. If something feels off, there’s nothing wrong with heading out.
One last thing, dog lovers: Before heading out with your four-footer, you’ll want to make sure your mutt has mastered his manners and basic dog park etiquette. By doing so, you and your pooch will be more likely to have a great visit and avoid negative encounters with other four-footers and their peeps.
Boston can be an amazing place to raise your pooch with plenty of parks and dog-friendly spaces to share with your four-footer. Enjoy exploring all Beantown has to offer with your fur baby.
Oh, and if you’re ever in NYC, make sure to check out our list of the best dog parks in New York City too! On a road trip? Browse through our entire collection of the best dog parks in major US cities for the best roadside hang-out spots!
Have you visited any of these parks with your pooch? Which one is your favorite? We’d love to hear all about it in the comments below!