What are some fun features at upscale dog parks?

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Just about every city and town in the United States has a dog park, and some of them are pretty lavish, with tunnels and climbing areas for agility training, doggie drinking fountains with water dishes and a spray area for during warmer weather. With pavilions, pathways and benches, it’s a great place to meander and relax while your pet plays in the park.

Call your local municipality or check with your veterinarian or local ASPCA for dog parks near you. Always call first to get the most up-to-date status, as requirements, pricing—even closures—can take place very fast.

Want a dream park in your community. Each year, dog lovers submit videos in hopes of winning the Beneful $500,000 Dream Dog Park. For details, visit www.benefuldreamdogpark.com.

Some of the more notable ones:

Howard and Erna Soldan Dog Park
Lansing, Mich.
The public park’s educational mission carries on through regular classes on topics like canine body language, dog park etiquette and safety and dog nutrition.

Millie Bush Bark Park
Houston
Named after Millie, the cocker spaniel of former president George H.W. Bush, this 13-acre public park includes doggie pools and fountains, special doggie showers, and lots of places to escape the sun.

Dogwood Park at Victor Ashe Park
Knoxville, Tenn.
This dog park boasts plenty of wag-worthy features, including tunnels, ramps, and doggie water fountains, all free to area residents.

Best Community Outreach
Shaggy Pines Dog Park
Ada, Mich.
With its 15 fenced acres of woods and trails, this park’s owners organize special play days for area foster dogs, raise money for local animal charities, and have sent care packages to K9 units in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Best Community Activities
Ossining Dog Park
Ossining, N.Y.
This dog park’s popular events include Bark in the Park, a festival that features vendors, dog demos, and games; a Halloween costume parade; and a humans-only gathering unapologetically dubbed “Unleashed.”

Best Exercise Area
Happy Tails Dog Park
Dunedin, Fla.
Dogs get to romp through tunnels, scramble up an A-frame, and sail through jumps under plenty of shade trees, then cool (and clean) off with a quick shower.

Best Pay-Per-Play
Jackson’s Howlabaloo Dog Park
Edinboro, Pa.
Jackson’s Howlabaloo Dog Park has 58 fenced acres of bucolic hills, trails, streams, and woods and five ponds.

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