Bend Oregon, A Pet Friendly Place to Visit

In Bend, we love our dogs. From the area’s seven (that’s right-- seven) off-leash dog parks, to the mountainous hiking trails and the flowing Deschutes River, dogs go with us everywhere. In fact, in 2012, Dog Fancy magazine named Bend the dog friendliest town in America. When staying at our hotel in Bend, Dr. Janet Ladyga offers some things to do with your dog when visiting. 
 
Leashed pets are welcome at our many pet stores and may also go along on your trips to the local hardware stores. The Deschutes River Trail, which has segments starting above  Tumalo State Park and beyond The Old Mill District, is one of the most popular places for outside exercise with your dog. Hiking the Pilot Butte nature trail allows an elevation change and absolutely incredible views of the area and helps you and your dog stay fit.  There are hundreds of miles of trails that you can take your dog hiking on-leash to spend a sunny afternoon together in nature.
 
The many off-leash dog parks allow for unrestricted running, jumping and Frisbee tossing, depending upon the park rules. We even have several dog-wash businesses, so that the dust, rock and other aspects of nature do not make it back to your house after a fun day of playing.
 

Below is a map of all the off-leash dog parks in Bend:

 
During the hot summer months of July and August, you will spot many people floating the Deschutes River.  As in most places in Bend, dogs get to come along for the ride.  You will spot all sizes and shapes of dogs floating with their owner or on a raft of their own tethered to their owners raft.  You will even see life vests on many of the dogs.  Most of which were made by the local pet supplier, Ruff Wear, which started right here in Bend. 
 
And in the Winter months, you can find many cross country skiers with their faithful companions right by their side bounding through the snow at 3 off-lease dog parks in the Deschutes National Forest Recreation Areas
 
Know when to take your dog along, and know when to leave him or her at home. If you need to catch up on those pesky errands such as grocery shopping, and the day is warm, it’s best to let sleeping dogs lie—at home. We all know that the temperature can rise dangerously inside of a car, even with the windows open. Since dogs can’t sweat, panting is their only mechanism they have to cool themselves, and hot air doesn’t do the job. Older, younger and brachycephalic (smooshed face) dogs are at greater risk of overheating. It’s also best to leave Lassie at home to guard the well on those really hot days. She will appreciate the shaded back yard or air-conditioned house more than the hot pavement.
 
Keeping your best buddy healthy so they can enjoy all the outdoor fun in Bend is very important.  And with just a few common sense precautions, you and your furry companion will be safe and enjoy a wonderful time together.  Make sure that Frank and Fifi are healthy and up to date on their recommended vaccinations and parasite preventatives. Ask your veterinarian, at your pet’s annual examination, what your pet needs to be healthy when in public. Outside of their homes, dogs can be exposed to many viral and bacterial diseases, as well as fleas, ticks and lice. Giardia, an intestinal protozoa, is common in the area. We also have a very geographically unique disease, called “salmon poisoning,” which can be fatal if not treated. Salmon disease is caused when a dog eats raw fish (common on the river) that has been infected with a fluke (Nanophyetus salmincola) and its associated bacteria (Neorickettsia helminthoeca). Both giardia, salmon poisoning and other diseases can cause vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy and sometimes a fever. See your veterinarian for any other tips or questions.
 
We are fortunate to be in such dog-friendly surroundings, and our canine companions soak up all the benefits. See you on the trail!