6 Best Dog Parks in Minneapolis

Written by Emilio Brown
Published: June 17, 2022
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Minnesota is filled with beautiful lakeS and forest habitats but is also home to the large twin cities. Minneapolis is the most populated city in Minnesota, with many things for you to do. If you have a dog, you may wonder where some of the best dog parks in Minneapolis are to enjoy. Dogs need regular exercise, and in a big city, it can be difficult to find a safe place to let your dog run free. 

Luckily, dog parks exist to give your dog a safe place to play and meet the other friendly pups living in the area. Before going to any dog park, your pup should be well-trained and fully vaccinated to ensure the safety of all visitors and yourself.  

Dog parks are the best places to let your dog run off-leash and get out all of its pent-up energy. Let’s take a look at 6 of the best dog parks in Minneapolis, so you can decide the one to go to when around the area. 

1. Carlson Dog Park

Large dog bowls

You should bring your water to Carlson dog park, but dog bowls are present due to visitor donations.

©Aleksandra Dabrowa/Shutterstock.com

Carlson Dog Park
Location 2541 Nevada Ave S Minneapolis, MN 55426
Hours 7 AM-8:30 PM
Price Free 

Nestled in a wooded area inside Cedar Knoll Park is the Carlson Dog Park. This large off-leash dog play area has mulch landscaping to help prevent dogs from getting too muddy. The entrance is double-gated, providing a leashing cage to keep your pup safe while entering and leaving the park. 

Currently, no water fountains are inside the off-leash area. Dog bowls have been donated by other visitors to the park so your furry friend can have easier access to water, stay hydrated and happy while exploring. Doggy poop bags have also been donated by regular visitors to the park to make sure people always have a way to clean up after their dogs. 

Trees are spread all around the park, providing lots of shade. Benches, picnic tables, and some donated lawn chairs are scattered around the dog area, giving owners shady spots to sit and relax while their pooch plays and socializes. This park doesn’t seem to get busy very often, so there is always plenty of room for your dog to play.

2. Gateway Dog Park

Gateway Dog Park
Location 1001-1099 4th Ave S Minneapolis, MN 55404
Hours 6 AM-10 PM
Price Free 

In Central Minneapolis, you can find Gateway Dog Park, an off-leash dog play area open to the public. This large fenced dog park has plenty for your pup to enjoy. Pea-sized gravel landscaping allows for a cleaner play area so your pooch won’t go home muddy after rainy days. There are small grassy raised blockers for dogs to jump and play on. 

Small trees have been planted around the park but currently provide little to no shade, but large trees around the edges of the park provide lots of shade. Some plastic chairs and benches are scattered around the off-leash area giving owners places to sit while their furry friend has fun. Water fountains are not currently inside the park, so be sure to bring your own. A small concrete water station with built-in dog bowls was placed on the ground for dog owners to use so their pups can drink some water after some good exercise.  

Visitors have donated toys and tennis balls to help keep every dog entertained and happy. This dog park can get pretty busy from 3 pm to 6 pm most days of the week. Mornings and weekends are typically slower, but there are almost always other dogs for your pooch to play with. 

3. Flying Cloud Dog Park

Yorkshire Terrier puppy sitting on the park grass

There are two separate areas at Flying Cloud Dog Park, giving smaller and larger breeds an area to play.

©Shllabadibum Bubidibam/Shutterstock.com

Flying Cloud Dog Park
Location 7171 Flying Cloud Dr. Eden Prairie, MN 55344
Hours 6 AM-10 PM
Price Free 

Flying Cloud Dog Park is located on the outskirts of Minneapolis in Eden Prairie. Here you will find a large open play area for your dog to enjoy. The dog play area consists of two separate spaces, one for large dogs and one for small dogs. A mix of wood chips and grass make up the landscaping in both areas.  

Agility equipment like a-frames, hoops, and tunnels are spread around both the small dog and large dog areas of the park giving your pooch plenty to do. Picnic tables are in both areas giving owners a good area to sit and chill out with other dog lovers while the pups socialize. Doggy bags and doggy water fountains are not currently provided by the park so make sure to bring your own. The park can get really busy on weekends but on the weekdays, stay pretty quiet. 

4. Bryant Lake Dog Park

Bryant Lake Dog Park
Location 6402 Rowland Rd Eden Prairie, MN 55344
Hours 5 AM-10 PM
Price Daily Pass: $6.50 

Another great dog park located along the edge of Minneapolis in Eden Prairie is Bryant Lake Dog Park. In the northern area of Bryant Lake Regional Park, you can find this large fenced off-leash dog play area. The landscaping at this dog park is much more natural than other parks found in Minneapolis. Trees, rocks, grass, dirt, and hills are all found within this dog play area. 

The entrance is double-gated, so leashing and unleashing your dog can be stress-free. At the entrance, there is a hose so you can hydrate and rinse your pup after a fun day of getting dirty because the area can get pretty muddy, especially after a rainy day. Doggy bags are provided near the entrance, so be sure to grab some before you enter so you can help keep the park clean. Picnic tables and benches are spread around this large off-leash area, so owners have plenty of places to sit and watch their pup enjoy the outdoors. 

Bryant Lake Dog Park is a very large off-leash area that is perfect for any dog that loves to explore. There are small fenced trails and creeks that provide both dogs and owners plenty of areas to explore. There is more than enough room for all dogs to come and play, even on the busiest days. 

5. Unleashed Hounds and Hops

Bar with Beers

Not only a dog park, Unleashed Hounds and Hops also serves fresh food and alcoholic drinks.

©Syda Productions/Shutterstock.com

Unleashed Hounds and Hops
Location 200 E Lyndale Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55405
Hours 4 PM-9 PM
Price Daily Pass-$7.99 5x Pass-$33.99 Annual Pass-$249.99

At Unleashed Hounds and Hops, you can find a dog park, taproom, and eatery. This is a great place for dog and food lovers to meet, relax and have fun. Here you will find an indoor and outdoor play area for dogs, so your pup has a place to run and play even on those cold rainy days or super hot summer days. Both the indoor and outdoor areas have plenty of places for owners to sit and enjoy some food or local beers while their furry friend socializes.

The indoor dog play area has equipment for the pups to play on as well as a big open space for all the pups to run around. The outdoor area has lots of open space for your furry friend to explore as well as benches, tables, and chairs for owners to sit and relax. Staff members called “rufferees” are always patrolling the dog play area to make sure all pups are safe and behaving. Evenings are typically the busiest time during the week, while weekends are typically busy all day. 

6. Minnehaha Dog Park 

Minnehaha Dog Park
Location 5399 S Minnehaha Park Dr. Minneapolis, MN 55417
Hours 6 AM-12 AM (Next Day)
Price Daily Pass: $5

Considered one of the best dog parks in Minneapolis, Minnehaha dog park is a large off-leash area for dogs to run and play with others. This dog park is located in Minnehaha regional park, which is a fun place for hiking, visiting historic landmarks, and enjoying the views of the surrounding area. Dogs must be on a leash unless in the designated off-leash area. Minnehaha park altogether is around 170 acres and is also located near a 53-foot waterfall that overlooks a river. 

Minnehaha dog park is a bit over 6 acres and is the only place to let your pup run around off-leash at Minnehaha park. River dog park is another name some use for this area since it is adjacent to the Mississippi River and a waterfall. If your dog is a breed that loves to swim, this dog park will let them splash around, or you can also go on a peaceful hike. 

This dog park requires a daily permit for your pup to get in, which is $5 for each dog you decide to bring. An annual permit is also available, which is discounted if you live in the area. Minnehaha dog park is a fun place to get out in nature, with a variety of scenery for you and your furry friend to experience. 

The photo featured at the top of this post is © iStock.com/Przemysław Iciak


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About the Author

Spiders, snakes, and lizards are my favorite types of animals, and I enjoy keeping some species as pets. I love learning about the various wonders nature has to offer and have been a writer for 5 years. In my spare time, you can find me getting out into nature.

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