The Ultimate Dog-Friendly Grand Canyon Guide (2024)

View of the Grand Canyon

I recently returned from a cross-country road trip from Missouri to California with my dog! Along the way, I knew I had to stop at the breathtaking Grand Canyon National Park. However, I was traveling with my pup, so I knew it would take a bit more planning. After researching and checking it out for myself, I’m excited to share with you the ultimate dog-friendly Grand Canyon Guide.

I’ll *unleash* the secrets of a perfect Grand Canyon getaway with your dog, from pet policies to tail-wagging trails and cozy stays. Your pup will thank you!

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Grand Canyon National Park Pet Policies

Before embarking on your canine adventure, it’s crucial to be aware of the park’s pet policies. Here’s some quick facts before we dive into deeper explanations!

  • Leash Regulations: Dogs must be on a 6-foot leash at all times within the park.
  • Designated Areas: Pets are allowed on the South Rim’s paved paths, the bridle trail (greenway) that connects the North Kaibab Trail Mather Campground, Desert View Campground, and in pet-friendly rooms at the Yavapai Lodge.
  • Clean up: As always, be a responsible pet owner and clean up after your dog. You’ll find waste bags are available at various locations.
  • Shuttle: Unfortunately, your furry best friend isn’t allowed on any of the park’s shuttles (except service animals)
  • Boarding: There is a boarding facility at the National Park (on the South Rim)
  • Unattended dogs: This should go without saying, but never leave your dog unattended in the car or tied up outside.

Dog-Friendly Hikes at the Grand Canyon

I was thrilled to find several dog-friendly hikes at the Grand Canyon. No matter which one you choose, you are guaranteed to be left in awe.

1. South Rim Trail

A paved and scenic 13- mile trail perfect for a leisurely stroll with your furry friend. The trail starts at Mather Point and ends at Hermits Rest. It’s a popular trail, so be prepared to share the path with fellow travelers. Hike as far as you (and your pup) are comfortable with making sure to stop and enjoy the view along the way!

2. Shoshone Point Trail

This easy 2.1-mile trail is a great dog-friendly option when visiting The Grand Canyon! This trail is likely to be less busy than the South Rim trail, but still give you the same amazing views. It’s truly a hidden gem! There’s picnic tables and restrooms at the end.

3. Bridle Trail (Greenway)

If you find yourself visiting the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, then be sure to head to the Bridle Trail. This dog-friendly hike is just under 5 miles and leads to slightly different views than you might see at the South Rim.

It’s important to note that the North Rim season is typically just between May 15 and October 15. After October 15th, the facilities close and the trails remain open for day use only (until the end of November).

Other Dog-Friendly Things to Do at Grand Canyon

Once your pup is tired out from all the hiking, be sure to check out these other things to do at the Grand Canyon with a dog!

1. Drive the Desert View Drive

After a hike or two, load back up in the car for a scenic drive. The Desert View Drive begins at Mile Marker 241.5 and travels east for 23 miles.

The drive provides numerous pull-offs, allowing you to take leisurely breaks and soak in the panoramic views of the canyon, with your dog eagerly taking in the sights beside you.

The Desert View Watchtower, a highlight of the journey, offers a pet-friendly space to stretch your legs and marvel at the expansive canyon landscape.

2. Watch the Sunset at Moran Point

Share a magical sunset with your pup at Moran Point; the colors reflecting off the canyon are a sight to behold. This viewpoint is located right along Desert View Drive, so if you time it right it will be the perfect way to end your day. Pack a picnic for dinner, lay out a blanket, and enjoy the changing sky with your dog by your side!

How to Use the Kennel at the Grand Canyon

For times when your furry friend can’t join in the adventure, the Grand Canyon Kennel (at the South Rim) provides a safe haven. I didn’t use it during my trip to the Grand Canyon, but I love that it is available to other dog-owners.

Here’s how to use it!

  • Reservations: Make kennel reservations in advance, especially during peak seasons (928-638-0534).
  • Vaccination Records: Bring up-to-date vaccination records for your dog (rabies, DHLP, bordetella, and parvo).
  • Hours: 7:30-5:00 (But can make reservations for overnight boarding)
  • Comfort Items: Provide your dog with familiar items like a bed, blanket, and favorite toys. No one likes to be in an unfamiliar place without their favorite items!

Where to Stay with your Dog at the Grand Canyon

I was pleasantly surprised with the dog-friendly hotel and lodging options near the Grand Canyon. We visited as a day trip, so I didn’t get to personally check these out, but it looks like you will not be disappointed with the choices!

Camping with your Dog

  1. Mather Campground: Located on the South Rim, Mather Campground is a pet-friendly haven with picturesque wooded sites. Leashed dogs are welcome, and the campground’s proximity to the South Rim Trail makes it convenient for scenic walks with your canine companion.
  2. Trailer Village: Nestled within Grand Canyon Village on the South Rim, Trailer Village offers pet-friendly RV and trailer sites. With paved roads and easy access to the canyon’s rim, it’s an ideal spot for dog owners seeking a comfortable camping experience.
  3. Ten-X Campground: Situated just outside the South Entrance of the Grand Canyon, Ten-X Campground is a pet-friendly forested oasis. With spacious sites and proximity to hiking trails, it provides a tranquil setting for both you and your dog to enjoy the great outdoors.
  4. Dogtown Lake Campground: Approximately 50 miles from the Grand Canyon, Dogtown Lake Campground is a serene retreat surrounded by pine trees. Leashed dogs are welcome, and the nearby lake offers a refreshing spot for your pup to cool off.
  5. Kaibab Camper Village: Conveniently located near the Grand Canyon’s North Rim, Kaibab Camper Village welcomes dogs at its RV and tent sites. Enjoy the quiet surroundings and take your furry friend for a stroll along the nearby trails.
  6. Lockett Meadow Campground: A bit further from the Grand Canyon, Lockett Meadow Campground is worth the drive for those seeking a more secluded experience. Dogs on leashes can join their owners on the campground’s trails, surrounded by stunning mountain views.
  7. Jacob Lake Campground: Positioned near the North Rim, Jacob Lake Campground is a pet-friendly destination surrounded by lush forest. With its cool climate and proximity to the Grand Canyon, it offers a peaceful retreat for campers and their canine companions.

Dog-friendly Hotels near the Grand Canyon

  1. Yavapai Lodge: Situated within the park itself, Yavapai Lodge has several dog-friendly options!
  2. Grand Canyon Plaza Hotel: A pet-friendly hotel located just 2 miles from the park entrance, offering comfort for both you and your furry companion.
  3. Red Feather Lodge: Another dog-welcoming option, conveniently situated near the South Rim, with spacious rooms and outdoor areas.

Dog-friendly Restaurants near the Grand Canyon

When it comes to satisfying your appetite after a day of exploration at the Grand Canyon, there’s good news for dog owners – several pet-friendly restaurants are ready to welcome both you and your furry friend. Here are a couple of spots to consider:

  1. Yavapai Lodge Tavern: Even if you aren’t staying in the lodge, the tavern is a great place to grab a bite to eat with your pup on the large outdoor patio.
  2. Bright Angel Bicycles and Café: Although there isn’t anywhere to sit with your dog here, it’s a great place for grab and go options.

Grand Canyon with a Dog Tips

  1. Hydration is Key:
    • Carry enough water for both you and your dog, especially during hikes.
  2. Check Trail Conditions:
    • Confirm trail conditions before setting out; some trails may be too challenging for pets.
  3. Respect Wildlife:
    • Keep your dog on a leash to avoid any unwanted wildlife encounters.

Is The Grand Canyon Dog-friendly?

With its awe-inspiring beauty and pet-friendly policies, the Grand Canyon is a dog-friendly destination! Sure your options may be limited, but it’s nice that dogs are allowed on some of the trails and nearby hotels.

Whether you’re exploring scenic trails or watching the sunset together, the Grand Canyon ensures an unforgettable adventure for you and your loyal friend. So, leash up, pack your dog’s essentials, and get ready for a tail-wagging experience at one of the world’s most breathtaking wonders.

in it for later

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