Thomas E. Williams II
(850) 258-8670
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Emerald Coast Living

Enjoying Florida’s Emerald Coast With Your Dog

Posted on - Laura Bernstien

Dog owners wanting to take their precious pets for fresh air or socialize have many options in and around the Emerald Coast. First there are several off-leash dog parks within a short drive, most of which have separate areas for small and large dogs. Additionally well-mannered, leashed dogs can be taken to Florida state parks. Unfortunately dogs are not allowed on area beaches in most cases, without a special permit.

Bark Park

JD Miller Rd and Chat Holly Rd

Santa Rosa Beach, FL, 32550

(850) 625-1097

Bark Park is a two acre off-leash park on J.D. Miller road somewhat near the intersection of highway 98 and state road 331. It has a separate area for small and large dogs, chairs, shade trees, and running water. Owners must clean up after their dog, and it is recommended to bring a bowl if your dog will need a drink.

Destin Dog Park

4100 Indian Bayou Trail

Destin, FL 32541

(850) 837-4242

Destin Dog Park is approximately three acres and includes separate off-leash areas for large dogs and small dogs. Both areas have grass and trees, open spaces and shaded areas, watering stations for dogs and owners, benches, and waste receptacles. Parking available. Open dawn to 10 pm daily. Closed Tuesday mornings from dawn to 10 am for maintenance.

Dog Daze

342 Miracle Strip Parkway SW

Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548

(850) 654-4126

Located in Liza Jackson Park in Fort Walton Beach, this off-leash park is divided into large and small dog areas. It has water fountains and a hose station for the dogs. It is open sunup to sundown.

Niceville Dog Park

Highway 85 and College Blvd

Niceville, FL

(850) 279-6436, Ext. 3002

This four acre off-leash dog park is located in Niceville, a short drive from Destin. It features lots of shade, watering stations, picnic tables, and plenty of parking. Open from dawn until 10 pm.

Henderson Beach State Park

17000 Emerald Coast Parkway

Destin, FL 32541

(850) 837-7550

Though not technically a dog park, this state park allows quiet, well mannered dogs for no additional charge. Dogs must be on a hand held leash of 6 feet or shorter, cleaned up after, and not left unattended for more than 30 minutes at a time. Additionally they are only allowed on the nature trail, in the camp area, or on the sidewalk. They are not allowed to enter the beaches, playgrounds, or buildings.

Fred Gannon Rocky Bayou State Park

4281 S.R.20

Niceville, FL 32578

(850) 833-9144

Another state park that allows quiet, well mannered dogs at no additional cost. Dogsmust be on a hand held leash of 6 feet or shorter, cleaned up after, and not left unattended for more than 30 minutes at a time. Additionally they are not allowed to enter swim areas, playgrounds, buildings, or food service areas, and must not be walked by the water at night.

Enjoy hanging with your fur baby? The Emerald Coast of Flordia is a perfect balance of activities and relaxation. Enjoy the beach life with your dog. Find your perfect home at Fido will thank you.