Doggone Good Times

Canines and their companions love redwood forests

dog on a trail wearing red and black plaid jacket.
A canine camper is dressed for the Cross Marin Trail at Samuel P. Taylor State Park. Dogs are allowed on leash on the Cross Marin Trail, the day-use picnic area and on campsites. Photo by Paolo Vescia.

“There’s nothing quite like escaping the city to a local redwood grove and relaxing next to a stream after work,” says Cameron Potratz, who takes his dog Tyson to Reinhardt Redwood Regional Park in Oakland. The park, Tyson’s favorite, is popular among pooch owners because dogs are allowed off leash on most trails. “He loves to run down the steep trails with abandon,” Potratz says.

It’s no wonder dogs love redwood forests—they’re places to sprint with a stick, splash in puddles, meet new friends, bond with their humans, and maybe appreciate the beauty of their surroundings.

Many California coast redwood and giant sequoia parks allow dogs for hiking, camping, picnicking, and frolicking on the beach, as detailed in our new free e-guide, 29 Awesome Dog-Friendly Redwood Parks.

Just as their humans, dogs and other pets can have a substantial impact on the natural environment and the wildlife that lives there. For the safety of the parks and your dog, it is important to only take pets where they’re allowed, and follow all the rules.

See how every dog can have their day at some of these enchanting parks.

Dog-friendly Redwood Parks


Woman and dog looking out from inside redwood tree trunk
Old-growth coast redwood trees delight pups and their people at Roy’s Redwoods Preserve in Woodacre, 27 miles north of San Francisco. Dogs must be leashed on trails and are allowed off leash on fire roads. Photo by Cameron Portratz


A woman smiles as she greets five dogs on a trail in the redwoods
Reinhardt Redwood Regional Park in Oakland is fun for the whole pack. Dogs are allowed off leash on most trails. Photo by Vivian Chen
A kneeling woman gives a small dog a treat on a trail in the redwoods
Dogs large and small enjoy Reinhardt Redwood Regional Park in Oakland. Photo by Vivian Chen.


woman walking dog in rain
Marvelous rain or shine, Joaquin Miller Park in Oakland offers second-growth coast redwood groves, fern-lined creeks, and oak woodlands. Dogs must be leashed, except in a designated fenced area. Photo by Vivian Chen.
A man taking his dog for a walk down a trail in the redwoods
Joaquin Miller Park is considered to contain one the few redwood forests to flourish today in an urban setting. Photo by Vivian Chen.
Two women and two dogs in a redwood forest
Oakland’s Joaquin Miller Park is minutes away from the bustling city, a great refuge for dogs and their humans. Photo by Vivian Chen.


Man and dog in the redwoods
Massive trees, granite peaks, and rushing rivers await visitors at Giant Sequoia National Monument and Sequoia National Forest in the Sierra Nevada. Dogs are allowed off leash on trails and on leash in developed places such as picnic areas and campgrounds. Photo by Alyse & Remi, Flickr Creative Commons.

About the author

Since 1918, Save the Redwoods League has protected and restored redwood forests and connected people with their peace and beauty so these wonders of the natural world flourish.

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