20+ Dog-Friendly Outdoor Activities for Dogs and Dog Owners to Enjoy!

By: Nathan Grant

Spending time outdoors with your dog doesn't need to be limited to playing fetch and going for a walk.

Bond with your dog and get a workout while you do it! There are tons of different activities out there to play, so you can find what works best for you. We have over 20 outdoor dog activity ideas that go beyond just a day trip to the park!

#1 Hide the Toy

Idea Credit: Lolly Jane

If you are spending the day at the beach, have sand be part of the fun. Bury a toy and let your dog get out all of his wildest digging desires! If you have a sandbox to do this with at home, that is an excellent way to play as well. This allows your dog to enjoy a natural instinct without causing any destruction to your lawn.

#2 Go Leaf Jumping

Idea Credit: Lolly JaneĀ 

If you have trees in your yard or at a friend’s place, your dog will have a blast playing in the leaves left behind. From the sound of the leaves crunching to the unlimited chances to hide, your dog will find many ways to play. Just be sure to take steps toward tick prevention prior to this activity!

#3 Make a DIY Agility Course

Idea Credit: Lolly JaneĀ 

Make obstacles for your dog to leap over and have a prize at the end of the course. You can place a toy in a box as a prize to add an element of mystery and surprise for your dog as well! For added fun, have your dog head back to the starting line with the toy and bring it to you.

#4 Get Sniffing

Idea Credit: Lolly Jane

Have the dog version of a treasure or egg hunt! Place treats and toys behind bushes and leaves, and let your dog use his natural inclinations and skill to find everything. To make it more interactive, spread things out and run with your dog while he searches. This will build excitement and ramp up your heart rate!

#5 Take Funny Photos

Idea Credit: Beagles and Bargains

When doing daily activities, dogs can be pretty hilarious. Bring the camera on a walk or trip to the park, and snap some action shots! See how many funny expressions you catch your dog making. Once the day is done, you can post the best shots to Instagram or Facebook and share the joy with friends and family.

#6 Exercise Together

Idea Credit: Beagles and Bargains

Whether you are going for a run or looking to do a daily exercise routine, you can add your dog into the mix! If your dog is small enough, you can use him for weights during squats. If you want a workout for the two of you, create a circuit that you can both utilize. Jumps, sprints, and obstacles can be a fun challenge for both human and pup. For dogs that love to swim, a routine in the water can be great for everyone too!

#7 Go Exploring

Idea Credit: Beagles and Bargains

No matter where you live, there are always new places to see. If you pick a day to go exploring different places, you may find new parks, trails, and other places to go – either that day or in the future. Your dog will enjoy sniffing around unfamiliar territory.

#8 Create a Garden

Idea Credit: Beagles and Bargains

Your dog is the perfect tool for gardening. Why use the shovel when your dog can happily do the digging for you? Plant new pet-friendly trees or flowers. Your dog will feel like a special assistant and have an awesome time

#9 Play Tag

Idea Credit: Beagles and Bargains

Rather than making playtime a one-sided event, get involved in the fun! Chasing each other around in a game of tag is a great workout and will lead to lots of laughter. You can do this at home, at a leash-free park, or even at the beach. Once you both get tired, you can kick back and relax together in the sun.

#10 Go for a Bike Ride

Idea Credit: Beagles and Bargains

If you have a small dog or one that is less agile, you can get a bicycle trailer for your pup and go for a ride! If you have a larger dog or one that enjoys running, go for a ride side by side. With a bicycle you will be able to keep up while your dog goes running full speed! No matter how you choose to do it, your dog will be excited to cruise around.

#11 Head Out for a Boat Ride

Idea Credit: Beagles and Bargains

If you own a boat, you can bring your dog along for a ride. If you don’t, you can always rent one! Your dog can enjoy swim time on a lake, or will enjoy a brisk ride on a canoe or paddle boat. The options are limitless! If you aren’t sure what your dog would like best, try out everything you can. The new experiences will help create a stronger bond between you and your dog no matter what.

#12 Head to the Cafe

Idea Credit: Beagles and Bargains

There are many dog-friendly cafes out there, allowing you to head to brunch with your best furry friend! At some restaurants, you may even find there is a menu for your pup. You can bond and relax together while enjoying the sunshine on the patio.

#13 Go to the Drive In

Idea Credit: Beagles and Bargains

Whether there is a drive-in theater near you or there is a local outdoor film event, bring your dog! You can both enjoy a picnic while seeing a movie. Your dog can cuddle with you and embrace the fresh air at the same time. Since drive-ins are becoming less common, you may as well do it before there are no more chances!

#14 Dog-Friendly Wineries and Breweries

Idea Credit: Beagles and Bargains

Believe it or not, there are many pet-friendly wineries and breweries out there. Call ahead to double check that your dog may attend, and then make the day of it. Sip your favorite drink and let your dog see a new place. The natural beauty of winery grounds are the perfect spot for both of you!

#15 For cold weather, Go Skijoring!

Idea Credit: Vet StreetĀ 

If you live in the cold or need some outdoor activities for the winter, skijoring is a cross-country skiing style you can do with your dog. Your dog gets to leap through the snow as you make your way through the trails. If your dog has never done anything like this before, be sure to take things slow and see your dog’s capabilities before going on a long skiing adventure.

Learn more about this sport and see what it’s like:

#16 Playing Flying Disc

Idea Credit: Vet StreetĀ 

If your dog has a lot of energy, a flying disc game can be a great way to lower energy levels. It is a serious workout! Your dog can leap higher than he usually does for a casual game of frisbee. If your dog is older or has arthritis, this is not a recommended choice. Leaping is very strenuous and tough on joints.

#17 Have a Game of Tug of War

Idea Credit: Bark Post

Dogs love getting to tug. Play competitively with your dog and see who wins! If you have a small dog, you may want to cut them a little slack (you’ll have a little bit of an advantage). If you have any old clothes, you can make a DIY tug toy!

#18 Meet with Local Dogs

Image Credit: Bark PostĀ 

Just as children go on playdates, dogs can meet up with other doggy friends at the park or another location. This allows your dog to bond with another canine, while getting out some energy. The workout will be great and your dog may end up making a lifelong friend.

#19 Go Skateboarding

Image Credit: Bark PostĀ 

You can teach your dog to skateboard with you, and the two of you can cruise around the town. Your dog will get tons of attention, and probably end up on the local Snapchat story! While you are teaching and riding, be sure to give your dogs plenty of treats and enjoy the bonding experience, even if your dog isn’t the best skater.

#20 Break out the Sprinkler

Image Credit: Bark PostĀ 

On a hot day, your dog can appreciate getting wet. The sprinkler gives your dog a chance to jump around and cool off. If you have a DIY agility course at home, you can add a sprinkler into the fun however your dog likes best.

#21 Go on a Stick Hunt

Image Credit: Bark PostĀ 

Dogs love getting sticks, especially when they are giant! Make playing fetch a bigger challenge for both of you by finding a large stick and tossing it around the yard. Your dog will be overjoyed at the chance to carry the champion stick, and your arms will feel the burn at the same time!

#22 Go Camping

Idea Credit: Pet Care RX

Going camping is not just fun for people – it’s fun for dogs too! Your pup can get the chance to sniff around new territory and examine all of the new surroundings. At night, they can cuddle up with you and enjoy a night in the great outdoors. While camping, you can find fun trails to climb or find places to go swimming together as well.

#23 Doga (Dog Yoga)

Idea Credit: Pet Care RX

Doga is just like yoga, but it allows your dog to take part. Moves are modified in a way that your dogs are perfectly capable of doing. Your dog can get into a yoga routine and have a fun fitness activity that the two of you can bond over.

See doga in action:

What ideas worked best for you and your dog? If you have anything you think should have made the list, let us know! Be sure to share this with allĀ of the pup lovers in your life.

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