Ah, the Heart of the New West! Well, I suppose Calgary’s new slogan is “be part of the energy”. Either way, it’s easy to see why the largest city in Alberta is also one its most livable. Sprawling parks, bustling & diverse communities, and not to mention its prime location, right next to the Rockies. It’s the place to be, for you and your pup! We at GoFetch believe that some of the best times in life are the ones you spend with your dog. As such, we have put together a small collection of Calgary dog friendly activities! Some you may already know, some may be a surprise.
With its numerous collections of parks and open areas, Calgary is a doggone destination!
The following, as with all of our lists, is in no particular order. We tried to have a good mix of parks, attractions, as well as activates, in order you to give you a wide breadth of choice. So what are you waiting for? Your pup is already at the door! Go out and experience some of the best Calgary dog friendly activities. Looking for something a little simpler? Check out our previous post on some awesome dog walking trails!
Calgary Dog Friendly Activities
1) Banff Lake Cruise
If you are a local, or visited Calgary just for a day or two, it’s a pretty sure bet that you also took a drive up to Banff. One of the Crown Jewels of Canada, Banff is park with few equals. Majestic lakes surrounded by dramatic and impressive peaks – its no surprise that Banff is one of the most photographed places in the country. Don’t forget your camera! If you are feeling a little more involved, the park also offers a lake cruise.
The gorgeous Lake Minnewanka, as seen from above
This one hour magnificent interpretive cruise of Lake Minnewanka and the scenic Canadian Rockies provides unique, visual and photographic opportunities unavailable anywhere else. The experienced crew will guide you through this rugged paradise richly steeped in history, native folklore, and geology. On this ride, you will be able to learn about the tremendous forces that created the surrounding mountains. Also, stay on the lookout for wildlife! You might get lucky. Best part about this is that your dog is allowed to come with you! You will need to call ahead of time, as your pup’s boarding is on the discretion of the captain. However, if your dog is well behaved and can be around new people comfortable, then you should face no issue! Learn more about the lake cruise here!
The boat cruise offers views that are usually unobtainable, offering your special vistas of this amazing place
2) Woodside Golf Course
Looking to take a stroke or two off your game? Don’t feel like the drive all the way to Banff? Well, Woodside, located in Airdrie, is a short hop & skip away from centre city. A mature and well maintained course, Woodside offers approachable golfing on a 6,200 yard course, which winds through the neighbouring community and nine separate water hazards. Best part about Woodside though? You can bring you dog along with you after 4 PM on Sundays! You will have to keep your pup on leash, and of course be expected to clean up after them, but a lazy Sunday golfing with your dog sure does sound peachy. The Pro Shop at the course has loaner clubs for children, and the restaurant offers fairly priced meals. Well worth a visit if you’re ever feeling the itch – learn more about the course here!
Lazy Sunday golf with your favourite four legged companion
3) Spruce Meadows
There is a reason why Spruce Meadows is consistently ranked #1 on sites like TripAdvisor & Yelp. As one of the global leaders in outdoor equestrian sports & venues, Spruce Meadows is a spectacularly well maintained and beautiful destination. Whether you love horses or think they’re a little strange, the place is a worth a visit. Your pup will need to remain on leash while on the grounds, and are more than welcome to watch trainers exercise their horses. However, please do keep in mind that your pup will not be allowed during formal events.
Spruce Meadows is one of the premiere locations for equestrian training & competition in the world
For a quick history lesson, Spruce Meadows is the brainchild of the Southern family who built a Show Jumping complex at the foothills of the Alberta Rocky Mountains. It was in 1976 that the first Spruce Tournaments were held, with annual spectator attendances reaching over 50,000 by the end of the decade. Spruce focuses on the organization and hosting of show jumping tournaments of unmatched quality for junior, amateur and professional athletes in a manner that reflects basic family values in a clean, green and welcoming environment that celebrates the horse and encourages the breeding and training of quality sport horses and the teaching and development of athletes. Learn more about this area here!
The huge area of Spruce allows for tons of opportunity for exploration
4) Fort Calgary
This 40-acre site, just east of downtown Calgary, is a beautiful location to take your dog for a stroll. While your dog has to be on a leash while in the area, and are not allowed inside the historic buildings themselves, the Fort provides a breath of fresh air. The fort was founded in 1875 when the NWMP crossed the Bow River and laid the foundations for Calgary at the place where the Bow meets the Elbow River; land that has been sacred to the Blackfoot people for thousands of years. Today, Fort Calgary’s interpretive centre allows you to explore the rich heritage of Calgary and the RCMP. The large outdoor park area is a great way for your and your pup to enjoy the river landscape, and offers unique views of downtown Calgary. Learn more about the Fort, and its history, here!
The main building of Fort Calgary, illuminated against the last, blue light of day
5) Fish Creek Provincial Park
We thought we would end this list with something it is a bit more in tune with nature (not to throw any shade your way Banff). Fish Creek, in our opinion, is one of the most gorgeous parks in the Calgary area. Fun fact: Fisk Creek is also one of the world’s largest urban wilderness areas, with over 87 km of trails for hiking, biking, and running! While the park is off-leash, you will have to keep your pup close at hand while in, and nearby, the parking lots. Once on the trails however, you are free to let your pup roam and explore to their hearts content! Please do be mindful of other park guests and dogs, and follow the park’s off-leash rules & etiquette. Learn more about the park here!
One of the many small rivers & streams that you will come across while exploring Fish Creek
We hope you have enjoyed our collection of Calgary dog friendly activities! Cowtown rarely disappoints, so we are sure you will find something to do with your pup. Whether it is taking a stroll through one of the many well developed trails, or exploring some of the massive parks, Calgary has something to offer every one, even those with wagging, happy tails. Much love,
– The GoFetch Team