The 5 Best Dog Parks in Oakland

Written by Emilio Brown
Published: June 15, 2022
©ław Iciak
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Finding the best dog parks in Oakland can be hard since the city is so large and heavily populated. With cities growing larger and populations rising, it can be hard to find enough space to give your pup the exercise it needs. Being a responsible dog owner means giving your furry friend the love and care it requires, which includes exercise and socializing with other dogs. That’s where dog parks come in!

Oakland is home to only a few dog parks, but they are located throughout the city, allowing everyone to visit one. Most of the dog parks in the city are small but still offer a great space for your pooch to run and play outside with other dogs. Like any other park, it’s important to keep an eye on your dog and make sure it is not causing problems for other dogs and owners. Dog parks are there for everyone to enjoy. 

Oakland is full of dog lovers, and dog parks are perfect places to meet, talk, and let their pups play together. So for all the dog lovers, let’s look at the 5 best dog parks in Oakland. 

 1. Hardy Park Dog Play Area

Cream-colored dog hiding its face with its paws.
Located under a freeway, the Hardy Park Dog Park is fully shaded from the sun and has concrete surfacing.


Hardy Park Dog Play Area
Location 491 Hardy St Oakland, CA 94618
Hours 24 Hours
Price Free 

Next to Frog Park in North Oakland, you can find the Hardy Park Dog Play Area. This small dog park is covered by a freeway and BART tracks, making it a great place to take your dogs on those extra hot or rainy days. Landscaping for this park consists of concrete with some small patches of gravel. There are no trees within the dog area, but that leaves plenty of space for your dog to run and play. 

Plastic lawn chairs and wooden benches have been donated for owners to use while their pups play. Previous park patrons have also donated some old toys and tennis balls. Regulars of the dog park are constantly donating doggy bags but be sure to bring your bags to make sure you can clean up after your pup. There currently is no water fountain inside the dog area, so make sure to bring water to keep your furry friend hydrated.  

2. Grove Shafter Park Dog Play Area

Grove Shafter Park Dog Play Area
Location Martin Luther King Jr Way & 36th Street, Oakland, CA 94609
Hours 6 AM-9 PM
Price Free 

You can find the Grove Shafter Park Dog Play Area underneath MacArthur and Grover Shaft Freeway in central Oakland. This mid-size dog park has a landscape consisting of dirt and grassy patches with some shrubs and small trees spread around. Some picnic tables and benches are spread around the park though some are broken and in need of repair. The freeway above the park offers constant shade over some areas of the park, but because it’s a high-traffic area, you can expect to hear lots of noise. 

Locals and regulars of the park try to keep it clean because this park is known to accumulate litter and debris fairly quickly. There is currently no water fountain or doggy poop bags for the dogs, so be sure to bring your own. This park is visited frequently by people who live in the neighborhood, especially on weekends and evenings. Weekend afternoons are typically the busiest times for this park though weekdays can also get busy from early to late evening.  

3. Jefferson Park Dog Play Area

godoggo fetch machine
There is always space for dogs to play at the Jefferson Dog play area.


Jefferson Park Dog Play Area
Location 618 Jefferson St, Oakland, CA 94607
Hours 5 AM-11 PM
Price Free 

The Jefferson Park Dog Play Area is located in Downtown Oakland inside Jefferson Square Park. This is a small fenced off-leash dog area with dirt and grass landscaping. The dog park is separated into two areas, one for small dogs and one for large dogs. A leashing cage is used for the entrance to make entering and exiting the park easy for everyone. 

Benches are available along the edge of the fence in both areas of the off-leash area. Doggy poop bags are not currently provided, and there are no water fountains inside the dog play area. Trash can sometimes be an issue here, but park maintenance and regular visitors try to clean up when they can. Almost all week, Jefferson Park Dog Park stays pretty empty, so there’s always space for your pup to play. 

4. Mosswood Park Dog Play Area

Mosswood Park Dog Play Area
Location 3612 Webster St Oakland, CA 94609
Hours 6 AM-9 PM
Price Free 

Found in central Oakland, Mosswood Park Dog Play Area is a small neighborhood park open to the public. Like other dog parks found in Oakland, this off-leash play area is found underneath a freeway. Dirt and mulch make up the landscaping with some stacked-up logs used as decoration and play equipment for the dogs. A leashing cage is used at the entrance for the safety of your dog and others.

There are two separate areas for large and small dogs in this dog play area. Benches and some plastic lawn chairs for owners to use are placed around the edges of the park. Large trees and shrubs make up a portion of the fenced perimeter, providing lots of shade. Trash cans are located around the park though doggy bags are not provided, so you will need to bring your own. 

A water fountain is provided at this park but can sometimes be out of order. This is a small dog park, but it tends to stay empty most of the time. Due to its small size, big dogs might not have much fun here, but small dogs would have more than enough room to run and play. 

5. Joaquin Miller Dog Play Area

Golden Retriever Dog
Two separate areas exist at Joaquin Miller Dog park for different-sized breeds, and it is the largest off-leash area in Oakland.

© Consaul

Joaquin Miller Dog Play Area
Location 3590 Sanborn Dr, Oakland, CA 94602
Hours 6 AM-8 PM
Price Free 

The Joaquin Miller Dog Park is found in east Oakland inside Joaquin Miller Park near Reinhardt Redwood Regional Park. This is the largest fenced dog park found in Oakland. Inside the dog area, you’ll find two separate areas for large and small dogs. The ground for both areas is mainly wood chips and dirt with some small grassy patches. Large trees are scattered all around this large dog park providing lots of shade.

Water fountains are provided by the park so you and your pooch can stay hydrated, especially on those hot summer days. Plastic lawn chairs that have been donated and large logs are found around the edges of the park, providing seats for owners so they can relax while they watch their pup. Doggy bags are not provided, so be sure to bring some so you can clean up after your furry friend. Because this dog park is so big, it doesn’t get full easily, even on busy days. All dogs are welcome.

The Featured Image

Yorkshire Terrier dog and beagle dog chese
©ław 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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