Finding a place for your dog to swim that is legal can be increasingly more difficult to find. In California, the solution has been to create dog water parks. But how do you know where these dog water parks are located and what some of the rules are regulations of these parks are? Also, California is a large state, so how do you find a dog water park that is within a short distance of your home?
What’s the best dog water park in California?
The best dog water parks in California are Paradise Ranch Pet Resort Los Angeles, Canyon View Ranch Los Angeles, The Local Bark Sacramento, The Orginal Dog Beach San Diego, and the Dr. James W. Thornton Dog Park in Fresno.
Depending on where you live in California, you may have several different dog water park options to consider, or you may only have one. But how do you know which ones have the best reputations and which ones are the safest for your furry loved ones?
Also, you do not want to have to spend the full day in the car to get there. Which dog water parks come recommended but are also within a short distance from your home?
Let us take a look at some of the best water parks in the state for dogs based on geographical location.
We will also review some of the basic rules, hours, address information, and telephone numbers of these dog water parks so you can be well-informed before you pack up the car for a fun-filled day keeping your dog entertained and cool in the hot summer months.
If you’re ever in the Los Angeles area and want to go to a REAL water park (and leave Fido at home), check out our guide to the best water parks in LA.
Best water dog parks by location in California
As California is an extremely large state geographically as well as one of the largest states with close to 40 million people, it may be best to break down the best outdoor water parks for dogs in California by focusing on the five largest metropolitan areas.
Maybe you are living in California, or you are road tripping it across the state with your pet, knowing where you can bring your dog to swim could bring a lot of fun for the whole family.
Below are some of the best dog waterparks in and around the cities of Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco, and Fresno.
Best dog water parks in Los Angeles
Taking your pet to a dog water park, to the beach, or to a resort has become extremely popular in Los Angeles.
While it’s true that there are tons of great outdoor water parks in California for people-only, there are also a lot of great dog water parks, too.
One of the main reasons it has become so popular is that LA has a warm, dry climate that can be tough on your pet, especially if they are a long-haired breed like a husky. Heatstroke is a potential risk for dogs living in the LA area, so a trip to the dog water park on a hot day may be one of the best ways to keep your dog safe and cool.
Because of the popularity of dog water parks, the close proximity to the beach, and the hotter climate, Los Angeles offers one of the largest selection of swimming options for your pet.
Here are some of the best water parks in Los Angeles for dogs.
Paradise Ranch Pet Resort
Paradise Ranch Resort is a fully operational doggie daycare, training, and grooming facility that is 100% cage-free, where you can either leave your pet during the day or bring it to enjoy the water park and socialize with other dogs and dog owners.
Paradise Ranch Pet Resort is one of the highest-rated dog water parks in the state of California.
- (818) 394-9557
- Monday to Saturday from 9 am – 5:30 pm. Sundays 9 am-4 pm.
- Drop-off and pick-up hours are 7 am to 7 pm every day.
Rosie’s Dog Beachwat
Rosie’s Dog Beach offers a natural place for dogs to play in the water, make new friends, and enjoy a more natural water park experience.
There is metered parking, restroom facilities, trash cans, and the exclusive Dog Zone. The Dog Zone offers a place for your pet to jump in the cool water, play with other dogs, and simply burn off some excess energy.
- (562) 570 – 3100
- 500 East Ocean Boulevard in Long Beach.
- 6 am – 8 pm every day.
Doggie Central’s pool service is a great place to bring your dog to cool down.
The pool is fully equipped with diving docks, paddle boards, and ramps for easy access to the water. The ramps allow for smaller, older, or more overweight dogs to enjoy the pool service as well.
- (310) 390-3645
- 11818 Teale Street, Culver City, CA
- Monday to Saturday 6:30 am – 9 pm. Sundays 9:30 am – 9 pm.
Country Dog Ranch
Country Dog Ranch offers a unique swimming experience for your dog with natural water, a large waterfall, and many sunning rocks where they can dry off and take in some sun.
The Country Dog Ranch offers many additional services like boarding and can even provide transportation to and from your home for your dog.
- (800) 591-1080
- 1702 South Robertson Blvd. Suite #288, Los Angeles, CA
- Monday to Saturday 7 am – 10 pm.
Canyon View Ranch
Canyon View Ranch offers your dog one of the largest ranch-style swimming opportunities, with multiple outdoor pools and waterfalls.
Additionally, there are plenty of other playful features like spiral tunnels and slides for your pet to enjoy and get their exercise.
- (310) 455-7897
- 1558 Will Geer Road, Topanga, CA
- 10 am – 4 pm Monday to Saturday.
Although the idea of dog water parks may not be quite as popular as in Los Angeles, there are still plenty of options in the Sacramento area to bring your dog park.
In addition to the Animal Den Pet Resort and The Local Bark Park, there are plenty of available natural swimming locations in and around Sacramento.
Animal Den Pet Resort & Spa
The Animal Den Resort & Spa not only offers a full pool center in their doggie daycare and grooming facility, but they offer private individual swim sessions as well.
The private swim sessions are good for puppies, unspayed or unneutered dogs, and antisocial pets who want to swim.
- (916) 456-4720
- 4060 Power Inn Road Sacramento, CA 95826
- Monday – Friday 7 am to 6:30 pm. Saturday – Sunday 7:30 am to 5 pm.
The Local Bark
The Local Bark offers a Splash Zone where patrons can take their dogs for 45-minute Pooch Plunge swim and 30-minute Skinny Dip swim sessions.
The pool is approximately 3 feet deep and there is always a canine CPR-certified staff member nearby.
- (916) 638-3880
- 3201 Fitzgerald Road Rancho Cordova, CA 95742
- Monday – Friday 6:30am to 6:30pm. Saturday 8:30am to 4:30pm. Sunday 12pm to 6pm.
Paradise Beach – Dog Beach
Although the American River Parkway – Paradise Beach is not a designated dog water park, to the locals in Sacramento, it has become a staple for dog owners looking for an enjoyable place to let their dogs cool off and get some exercise.
- Open year-round from sunrise to sunset.
San Diego is one of the most beautiful cities in the US for both dogs and humans who enjoy spending time outdoors.
Similar to Los Angeles, temperatures can become quite fierce in the summer months.
For this reason, canines need to make sure that they have access to some fresh spots to cool down their core temperatures.
Happy Dog Happy Owner
Happy Dog Happy Owner is a multi-service dog facility that specializes in obedience training, scent works, and agility training.
They board pets as well. One of the unique aspects of the Happy Dog Happy owner is that they offer water sports training classes as well to teach your dog paddleboarding and other water activities.
- (619) 889-8606
- 4495 Niagara Avenue, San Diego, CA
- Monday – Friday 7 am to 10 pm. Saturday 9 am to 9 pm.
The Orginal Dog Beach
The Original Dog Beach is a public beach that is actually one of the first official off-the-leash dog beaches ever established in the United States.
The Orginal Dog Beach is located at the mouth of the San Diego River and the Pacific Ocean.
Check their website for more information about special events like dog surf competitions and other festivals that take place throughout the year.
- Ocean Beach, San Diego, California
- Open 7-days a week – 24-hours a day.
Canine to Five
Canine to Five is a puppy-focused kindergarten that also offers puppy swimming lessons in their pool.
The puppy swimming lessons can be booked separately from the kindergarten, but the pool is also available for normal use during the half and full-day kindergarten sessions.
One unique feature of Caine to Five is the self-wash dog stations at the facility that can be used at any time.
- 2423 Morena Boulevard, San Diego, California
- Friday 12 pm to 5 pm. Saturday 9 am to 3 pm.
K-9 Aquatics and Wellness Center
The K-9 Aquatics and Wellness Center is a specialized canine swimming facility for dogs of all ages, however, they have a big focus on aging canines as well.
As dogs get older, they may find it more difficult to exercise and they may develop issues like arthritis.
The K-9 K-9 Aquatics and Wellness Center provides swimming sessions to get the exercise they need in a low-impact environment.
They also work with vet professionals who can provide special therapy programs and after-surgery care.
- (619) 200-7619
- 10925 Hartley Road Suite E, Santee, California
- Tuesday – Saturday 10 am to 6 pm. Closed on Thursday.
San Francisco offers many outdoor swimming opportunities for your canine because of its coastline and number of great beaches.
Many of the beaches have off-the-leash dog policies, however, be sure to check the official ordinances for each beach before you go.
For some indoor dog water parks and swimming opportunities, there are, unfortunately not too many options. The once much-appreciated Door Pool Club is now closed indefinitely.
However, for some indoor swimming with a therapeutic aim, there is the Rex Center located in Pacifica.
The Rex Center
The Rex Center is an indoor swimming facility that offers many types of aqua therapy and water activities for dogs throughout the bay area.
They offer exercise swims, swimming lessons, and warm water therapy swims.
The Rex Center is more intended for therapeutic use and therefore a personal appointment is required.
- 1040 Palmetto Avenue, Pacifica, CA
- Must make a private appointment.
By far if you are in the Fresno area, then the Dr. James W. Thornton Dog Park is the best option.
The park’s main water feature is a 2,000-gallon canine wading pool with fountains and water-powered jets.
There is also an agility course and plenty of open grasslands for dogs to dry off from their swim and burn energy.
Dr. James W. Thornton Dog Park
- Open every day from 7 am to 7 pm.
- Membership is required so be sure to contact the park office for more information.
Why are swimming and water play good for your dog?
It is undeniable that there are numerous health benefits for dogs who swim and who play in the water.
The first and most obvious reason is that swimming and playing with other dogs in the water is just plain fun. It can relieve stress and help your dog burn some energy while socializing with other canines.
Next, people may not realize how easily dogs can get overheated with their heavy fur coats.
On hot days, playing in a dog water park is a good way to stay active while making sure they do not overheat like they could from other activities.
Last, swimming provides many opportunities for low-impact exercise for old or overweight dogs who may also be unable to exercise.
Exercise can help them lose weight, strengthen their joints, soothe aches and pains, as well as reduce inflammation while boosting their metabolism.
What breeds of dogs love the water?
Although it may seem like all dogs love water, although a good majority do, not all will take naturally to the water.
This is where slowly introducing your pet to the water from an earlier age can help them establish confidence when playing in the water. Also, many indoor water facilities offer swimming lessons.
However, for some breeds, you may see that they simply can swim without thinking about it. Many breeds of spaniel, lab, retriever, and even the common poodle or poodle mixes, may feel absolute comfort when playing in the water.