Wondering where in the ACT to take your furry best friend? There are lots of places to take your dog on leash and off leash to ensure they get regular exercise and socialisation.
Remember, when in a public place with your dog, you must have effective control of the dog at all times, whether it is on or off leash.
Fenced dog parks are available at the following locations:
For more information including dog park etiquette please visit Fenced Dog Parks Rules and Responsibilities.
Gibraltar Forest Regeneration Area formerly known as Gibraltar Pines east of Corin Road, is now closed as a dog off leash exercise area and dogs are now prohibited. This change is to safeguard domestic dogs from 1080 poison baits for wild dogs and foxes laid in this area. Dogs are permitted on leash at Woods Reserve.
The Off Leash Dog Exercise Areas Map can be viewed online. Please keep in mind that these open space areas are used for other recreational purposes too, so it is important dogs remain under the control of their carers while exercising off leash.
These maps are detailed and delivered through ACTMAPi, the ACT Government's interactive mapping service.
These maps are currently being updated and the onus is on the individual to follow the designations displayed on signage.
You can take your dog to all major parks as long as it is on a leash. Dogs must also be kept on leash on all paths and cycleways for the safety of walkers and cyclists. As a general rule, if you are ever in doubt you should keep your dog on a leash.
Dogs must be on leash on shared pathways outside off leash exercise areas. Please be mindful of passing pedestrians and cyclists and keep to the left.
There are a large number of horses in the ACT which use Canberra's equestrian connections through public open spaces, some shared paths and underpasses. Horses can be startled by unrestrained or aggressive dogs, especially in confined spaces. They have a significant reach with their hind legs when they feel threatened. For the safety of all it is recommended that you keep your dog on a leash around horses even in off-leash areas.
Dogs, except for assistance dogs with permits, are not to be taken:
The fine for taking dogs into prohibited areas is $150, or $350 for taking them onto the grounds of a child-care centre, preschool or primary school.
All dog droppings in public places must be removed by the dog owner. It is an offence not to remove your dog's droppings in a public place and not to carry appropriate equipment to pick up your dog's droppings. An on-the-spot fine of $150.00 can be issued by authorising officers if you do not pick up and dispose of your dog's droppings. An on-the-spot fine of $75.00 can also be issued if you are not carrying appropriate equipment to collect your dog's droppings.
For more information on dog laws and pet ownership in the ACT, please refer to Domestic Animal Services.