With its wide open spaces, mountainous trails, and temperate weather, Washington is a rewarding place to travel with your furry companions. Where appropriate, I’ve tried to include information about pet-friendly lodging, parks, and trails. In Seattle, I’d have to say my personal favorite pet-friendly lodging is at the attentive Alexis Hotel, which not only accepts pups with open paws but also offers pet sitting.
As you venture further afield, you’ll find that the state is fairly liberal about its wilderness pet policies when compared to other western states, such as California. Leashed dogs are allowed at campgrounds and trails within the state park system and banned only from designated swimming areas at those parks. You can also bring your leashed dog throughout all national forest land except designated wilderness areas.
Though leashed dogs can visit Mount Rainier, Olympic, and North Cascades National Parks, they are only allowed in paved areas and developed campgrounds, not on trails. The sole exception is along the Pacific Crest Trail, which allows dogs on leashes no longer than six feet.
Following are a few recommendations for pet-friendly parks, hotels, and campgrounds. This is by no means an exhaustive list, but it should point you in the right direction if you’re traveling with Fido
Washington is a tremendously dog-friendly state, with its open trails, pet-friendly hotels, and millions of birds and squirrels to chase. You and your best friend never have to go far to have an adventure — Washington is full of truly excellent dog parks.
Marymoor Park is the premier pooch park west of the Cascades in Redmond, featuring 40 leash-free acres of canine recreation. Play fetch in the grassy fields or splash around in the mellow Sammamish Slough. This well-landscaped and flawlessly maintained park is sure to set tails wagging.
I-5 Colonnade Dog Park is near downtown Seattle. This unique park is nestled underneath a lofty I-5 overpass, although it’s easy to forget about the hustle and bustle a hundred feet over your head. This long, terraced park is a great place for socializing or fetch, and even provides complete shelter from the rain.
The SCRAPS Dog Park in Spokane is the first off-leash park in Spokane County. A repurposed rest-area, the park is a three-acre dog party by the East’s big city.
Fort Steilacoom Park in Lakewood near Tacoma hosts a great park, divided into sections for big dogs and little dogs. Near the former site of an historic mental hospital, the park features open areas for running as well as shady groves and sniff-tastic brush.
When in Yakima, check out the Norman & Nellie Byrd Off-leash Dog Park along the Yakima Greenway Path. It can seem a bit deserted at times, so be sure to bring a few toys if you go.
The city of Vancouver has a fascinating policy on off-leash dogs, featuring over 30 parks and areas that have off-leash hours at least part of the day. From beaches to fields, there is something for any sort of dog here. Check http://www.cityofvancouver.us/parks-recreation/parks_trails/olas.htm for the latest hours and locations.
- Andersen’s RV Park in Long Beach
- Conestoga Quarters RV Park in Port Townsend
- Crescent Beach RV in Port Angeles
- Rainbow’s End RV Park in Sequim
- Grayland Motel & Cottages near Grays Harbor
- Harbour Inn Motel on Whidbey Island
- Howard Johnson Plaza in Yakima Valley
- Three Rivers Resort in La Push
- Westwynd Motel in Gig Harbor
- Winthrop Inn in Winthrop
- Boreas B&B in Long Beach
- The Davenport Hotel in Spokane
- Fat Duck Inn in Walla Walla
- Miller Tree Inn in Forks
- Mt. Gardner Inn in Methow Valley
- Olympic Suites in Forks
- Orchard Inn B&B in Yakima Valley
- Sunset Marine Resort near Sequim
- The Swan Hotel in Port Townsend
© Ericka Chickowski from Moon Washington, 8th edition