Make every day a dog day this summer. Here are seven ideas for spending time with your dog:
Leave your bathing suit at home for this dogs-only swim at Orion Oaks in Orion Township. Your canine friend can dive off the dock and paddle around the lake while you watch. When swim time is over, take a walk along the Dog Tail Trail or just let your furry friend mingle with other dogs in the 24-acre enclosed dog park. Thereâ€™s a small dog area, along with picnic tables, drinking water and restrooms. The park, at 1200 Joslyn Road, is open from 8 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. daily.Â Dogs must be licensed, up to date on vaccinations and able to follow commands.Â The daily admission rate is $5 per car for Oakland County residents and $12 for non-residents â€” or buy an annual pass.
If you want to take a dip with your dog and youâ€™re ready for a road trip, pack an overnight bag or your camping gear and head to Kruse Park in Muskegon. A portion of the sandy beach at Lake Michigan is set aside for dogs. Dig in the sand, swim in the lakeÂ and relax on the beach. For overnight camping, try nearby Hoffmaster State Park or Muskegon State Park. Dogs are permitted in the campgrounds, but must be leashed at all times.
Canine to Five, the day care/boarding company with locations in midtown Detroit and Ferndale, presents Drinking with Dogs, 6-9 p.m.Â select Tuesdays through October at bars and breweries throughout metro Detroit.
â€śYou donâ€™t have to be a Canine To Five customer to attend,â€ť Colleen Robar, public relations spokeswoman, wrote in an email.Â â€śNo RSVPs are necessary.Â Just bring your dog (or not) and a thirst for fun.â€ť
The events are free and open to the public. Each gathering raises funds for an animal welfare organization.
â€śThe bars and restaurants typically have a signature drink or donate a portion of the proceeds to the animal rescue group that works with us at each venue.Â The rescue groups bring swag and adoptable animals,â€ť Robar said.
The next gathering is July 24 at Old Miami, 3930 Cass, Detroit, to benefit Detroit Dog Rescue. For more Dining with Dogs events, see the Canine to Five website.
Summer school may be just what your dog needs to help remember basic commands, to learn them for the first timeÂ or to try a new sport.
Wolverine Dog Training Club inÂ Farmington HillsÂ offers basic through advanced obedience classes each Wednesday. Beginner training for the family dog starts at 7:45 p.m. and runs 45 minutes. A new six-week session starts July 16.
Michigan Dog Training in PlymouthÂ trains dogs in basic manners each WednesdayÂ and has a new four-week session starting in July.
Obedience classes prepare your dog for continued learning in other canine sports such as agility or scent work, which both facilities offer. Â
If your dog needs a little help staying afloat in the pool this summer, consider a Doggy & Me Swim Class at Bark-A-Bout in Shelby Township. The next hour-long, two-week course starts Wednesday, July 25, and will teach dogs, age 6 months and older, swimming pool basics. Owners can be in the water with the swim coach or watch from poolside.
“We teach dogs of all breeds and sizes how to enter and exit the pool confidently,” said Crystal Carlton, marketing and events coordinator. “We have a heated indoor pool, an outdoor poolÂ and a wave pool in our bark park.”
Bark-A-Bout also teaches dock diving in one-on-one and group settingsÂ and holds diving competitions. Â
Dagwoodâ€™s Deli & Catering, 33179 Grand River Ave., in FarmingtonÂ has welcomed customers and their dogs to its outdoor patio since it opened 34 years ago, owner Jerry Burger says.
â€śWe have four (tables) in front. Coldstone next door has three or four, so thereâ€™s about a total of 16 seats,â€ť Burger said. â€śWeâ€™ve never restricted anyone. Itâ€™s free-wheeling. The dogs usually just sit next to their people while they eat.â€ť
He says the best time to break bread with other dog owners is Saturday, when farmers market shoppers and their furry friends stop by Dagwoodâ€™s outdoor patio for a quick bite.
Dagwoodâ€™s sells a wide variety of sandwiches, including the 2-pound Dagwoodâ€™s, a combination of roast beef, ham, turkey, two kinds of cheese, tomato, lettuceÂ and special sauce on four slices of bread.
There are lots of other dog-friendly restaurants with outdoor patios, from Corattiâ€™s on Main in downtown Milford to Crawfordâ€™s Kitchen in Plymouthâ€™s Old Village neighborhood. Some eateries allow dogs to sit at their ownerâ€™s side outdoors, while some require pets to stay just outside the patio area. Remember to call ahead for details.
Meet other dog owners and their pets while snacking on soft-serve or hand-scooped ice cream at the Dairy King, 232 S. Main, in downtown Plymouth. This family-owned ice cream parlor has some outdoor seating, humans-only indoor seating,Â a walk-up order windowÂ and is a magnet for ice cream lovers and their pooches.Â
After mingling withÂ other dog lovers at Dairy King, walk to the Music in the Air concert at 7 p.m. FridayÂ atÂ Kellogg Park.Â Larry Lee and the Back in the Day Band plays funk and soul July 6; Boogie DynomiteÂ will take you back to the ’70s with disco on July 20; and The Square Pegz rounds out the month on July 27 with ’80s tunes.Â
Carmen’s Dairy Bar & Grill, 55 N. Rochester Road, just north of 14 Mile, in Clawson is another magnet for ice cream lovers and their dogs. Customers can treat their pets to a Pooch Parfait consisting ofÂ vanilla custard and two dog treats for $1.95.Â
You wonâ€™t go wrong adding these three hiking trails to your list of favorites.
For a shorter walk, start with the trails in the nature preserve at Rotary Park, located on Six Mile at Hubbard, in Livonia. Head to the back of Rotary Park and keep your dog leashed. Trails connect and meander through woods and near a creek. Wear insect repellent, especially in the evening when you’ll notice bugs in these dense woods.Â
Looking for something a little longer? Explore Bloomer Park in Rochester Hills with your dog on leash. Park at the Clinton River Trailhead just off East Second Street/Letica Drive, east of Main, in downtown Rochester. Hike the trail until it forks. Take the trail on the right, leading to a bridge over the Clinton River. From there you can stay on the old railroad bed and walk until it dead ends at the river. Youâ€™ll see a damn, remnants of an old railroad bridge and sometimes men and women fishing for pike, bass or walleye. Off-shoots from the main trail will lead you through forested and hilly areas of the park.
If you want even more space, try Highland Recreation Area, a 5,903-acre state park on Highland Road (M-59) between Bogie Lake Road and Duck Lake Road, in White Lake.Â Youâ€™ll have plenty of room to roam with your dog on approximately 17 miles of hiking trails. Dogs must be on maximum 6-foot leashes.
Amanda Lizzet, an employee at the park headquarters, said the Cedar Creek Trail, a 2.75-mile path, is a favorite with walkers and dogs who want to encounter â€śfewer bugsâ€ť on the trail.
Admission to the park is a pass thatâ€™s good for one year. Buy it for $16 at the park or for $11 when you renew your vehicle license plates.
End the week with spiritual reflection at the Congregational Church of Birmingham, UCC, 1000 Cranbrook Road, Bloomfield Hills. The congregationâ€™s 10 a.m. outdoor Sunday service and its grounds are open to leashed dogs, catsÂ and other â€śrelaxedâ€ť pets. Outdoor services run through the first Sunday in September.Â
The church also is collecting pet food donations for Michigan Animal Rescue League in Pontiac.Â
Contact Sharon Dargay atÂ firstname.lastname@example.org.
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