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Dogs need some time to be dogs. Here’s where you can take them to run and frolic leash free. (Most of the public parks in Bay country allow dogs but require that you keep them on a leash.)
For off-leash play, dog parks offer large fenced areas for both big and small dogs to run free while getting the socialization and exercise that keeps them healthy and happy. Two parks have dog beaches for water-loving canines. Keep your furry friend on best behavior; aggressive dogs are best kept at home lest they be banned from future visits.
Bowie Dog Park, 3600 Northview Dr., Bowie: 301-809-3022. One-acre park includes two fenced-in dog areas; dogs must have a current rabies tag and pet license. open daily 8am-dusk.
Broadneck Park, 618 Broadneck Rd., Arnold: 410-222-7317. Dog park with two fenced sections; one for large dogs and one for small dogs; open daily dawn to dusk.
Downs Regional Park, 8311 John Downs Loop, Pasadena: 410-222-6230. Dog park and beach open daily except Tues. 7am-dusk: $6 fee per vehicle.
Dunkirk District Park, 10750 Southern Maryland Blvd. Dunkirk: 410-535-1600; http://www.co.cal.md.us/Facilities/Facility/Details/2. Dog park features a large grassy area, chairs and a few water pumps with hoses. Open daily from 8:30am-11pm.
Grays Road Dog Park, 2695 Grays Rd., Prince Frederick: 410-535-1600. Separate areas for small dog and larger dogs; open from dawn to dusk.
John G. Lancaster Dog Park, 21550 Willows Rd., Lexington Park: 301-475-4200. Open daily dawn to dusk with one large dog run and one small run.
Maryland City Park, 565 Brock Bridge Rd., Laurel: 410-222-7317. Dog park offers separate areas for large and small dogs; open daily dawn to dusk.
Quiet Waters Park, 600 Quiet Waters Park Rd., Annapolis: 410-222-1777. Dog park and beach open daily except Tues. 7am-dusk: $6 parking fee.
Towsers Branch Park, 1405 Jackson Rd., Odenton: 410-222-7317. Dog park offering large and small dog areas; open daily dawn to dusk.