Whenever things normalize, here’s the first thing to do: head to an Ontario Provincial Park – with the dog. And leave the tent at home, because 2020 brings some good news for pet lovers:
Yes, Ontario Provincial Parks are now more dog friendly.
After years of inquiring (and yes, some complaining), dogs can finally stay in yurts and cabins at Ontario Provincial Parks. No fooling, as of April 1, 2020 select ‘glamping’ accommodations are available to our canine companions – as soon as the parks re-open, of course.
We’ve tried tent camping at Pancake Provincial Park (check out our adventure here) with minimal success, though I’m not opposed to attempting it again in warmer weather. But only if the one yurt dog-friendly yurt at Pancake Bay is booked.
You see, not ALL roofed accommodations are dog-friendly, only select ones. That way guests with allergies can remain unexposed. Also, there’s a two-dog limit and an additional $20 fee for pups.
But at least there’s a few provincial dog-friendly cabin, trailers or yurts for rent this summer.
Where can you camp with your dog in Ontario? Here’s the list of Dog-friendly Ontario Provincial Parks Glamping Sites:
- Algonquin Provincial Park (Mew Lake): Yurt 62
- Arrowhead Provincial Park: Cabin 224
- Bon Echo Provincial Park: Yurt 153, Cabin 612
- Charleston Lake Provincial Park: Yurt 315C
- Fushimi Lake Provincial Park: Cabin 43
- Killarney Provincial Park: Yurt 6
- MacGregor Point Provincial Park: Yurt 90
- Pancake Bay Provincial Park: Yurt 365
- Pinery Provincial Park: Yurt 480C
- Rene Brunelle Provincial Park: Cabin 100
- Rushing River Provincial Park: Trailer 403, Trailer 405
- Silent Lake Provincial Park: Yurt 5, Cabin 201
- Sleeping Giant Provincial Park: Cabin 4
- Windy Lake Provincial Park: Cabin 201
Roofed accommodations are available April to October, so if you want to visit the parks in winter, you’ll have to stay nearby – as my dog Victor and I did at Arrowhead Provincial Park (see here) to check out the skijoring.
Of course, there are rules -pick up after your dog, don’t leave them alone and keep them on leash unless you’re at an off-leash zone … and there are a few provincial parks that have off-leash zones:
- One of our favourites is at Chutes Falls fenced off-leash run where we stopped for a run after visiting the dog-friendly sites in Sudbury, Ontario.
- Another spot closer to home we frequent is the dog-friendly beach at Shelkirk Provincial Park.
- And for a leash-free trail run, nothing beats Bronte Provincial Park, near the camp sites.
For a complete list of Ontario Provincial Park Dog Beaches and Exercise areas, click here.
I’m hoping to camp one more weekend with Victor this summer, preferably in a cabin somewhere further north we haven’t explored yet. Our summer travel plans are clearly up in the air – and not only because everyone’s travel plans are on hold.
Diagnosed with Canine Cognitive Dysfunction (yes, doggie dementia) last fall, Victor’s health is failing. But a camping trip that allows me to spend night and day with him, walk him a lot through the woods and not worrying about him escaping a tent at night might be exactly what we need this summer.
We’ll see. He might get his glamp on yet.
Need camping equipment?
Check out our Gen7 Pet cabin/cottage dog bed review here.
Writer bio: Sherri Telenko has been a professional writer for decades and travel writer for the last two. She’s a member of TMAC (Travel Media Association of Canada) and Dog Writers Association of America, and travels almost weekly with her canine companion, Victoria. All written content is original, written by a person, and based on experience and research.
[…] our adventures at Arrowhead Provincial Park). (UPDATE: Several Ontario Provincial Parks have added dog-friendly accommodations in recent […]
[…] Pancake Bay Provincial Park also has yurts – permanent tent-like structures with cots, heaters and electricity. However, dogs are not allowed in the yurts. Not perfect. (Note: As of 2020, Pancake Bay Provincial Park now offers one dog-friendly yurt). […]
[…] new addition to Ontario provincial parks, and allowing dogs in select yurts is even more recent. (Check out the list). Yurt 480C is dog-friendly, but book well in advance. In fact, booking spots at most Ontario […]
[…] Sleeping Giant Provincial Park has 100 km of hiking trails and some of the highest cliffs in Ontario. And, hopefully, we’ll get to stay in Cabin 4, one of the cabins or yurts Ontario Parks has designated pet friendly. […]
[…] Dog-friendly stops I’ll be making soon: Sandbanks Provincial Park, Picton, Ontario, is home to the world’s largest bay-mouth barrier dune formation. Two beaches – Lakeshore Beach and Outlet Beach – permit dogs. Unfortunately, there’s no pet-friendly yurt here, but there is in other provincial parks. See list here. […]
[…] First, my dog Victor is getting older and needs more time out of the car. Frankly, so do I. On a recent road trip north from Toronto to Sault St. Marie, we took time to check out Chutes parks. If I’m in the area again, I’d like to camp. (If I ever camp again – check out our Pancake Bay experience). […]
[…] UPDATE: Great News! In 2020, Ontario Provincial Parks are allowing dogs in certain cabins, yurts and glamping sites – check out the list here. […]