Best of Houston

The Rest of the Best: Houston's Top 10 Dog Parks

Houston has several dog parks, from tiny, private "for residents use only" parks in gated communities to huge sections of wooded acreage. In deciding what makes a good dog park, we looked at amenities and features that are attractive to both dogs and humans. Ponds and pools were a big draw (got to cool off in this Texas heat), beauty not so much. Safety, for both dogs and humans, was also an important factor. Here's our list of Houston's top 10 dog parks; see who made the list and who didn't.

10. Baytown Bark Park at Jenkins Park 4334 Crosby Cedar Bayou)

It was location that pushed the Baytown Bark Park at Jenkins Park so far down our list. Baytown is a bit of a trek just to visit a dog park, but if you're in the area, it's certainly worth a visit. The five acre park (four acres for large dogs, one acre for small dogs) was designed with the help of the Baytown Kennel Club and includes large grass and bark-covered lawns, walking trails, agility equipment, benches, drinking fountains and shaded areas.

9. Danny Jackson Family Dog Park 4700 Westpark

We considered beauty to be only a minor factor in our selection, as evidenced by the inclusion of the Danny Jackson Family Dog Park. It ain't pretty, but it is a dog's delight. Long, thin lawns give pets room to take a good run. The fact that those lawns stretch out under a line of massive transmission towers and power lines is a factor only for the human visitors. There are no shade trees (remember those nearby power lines?) but there are two ponds, benches and a walking path that connects the large and small dog areas.

8. Ervan Chew Dog Park 4502 Dunlavy

This is the park that was the first to allow dogs to legally run free, off-leash. The space isn't as ample as some of our other choices, but it does have a nice, neighborhood feel to it. The park features a double gated fence, benches, large trees, water fountains, pick up bags and bark ground cover.

7. Maxey Bark Park and Run Park 601 Maxey Rd.

We're going to overlook the redundancy in Maxey Bark Park and Run Park's name, and get right to the good part: Maxey Park has 13 acres of wooded parkland for dogs. There are separate fenced-in spaces for large and small dogs, drinking fountains, dog shower, waste disposal station and plenty of benches under tall, shady trees.

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Olivia Flores Alvarez