DogTipper’s Texas with Dogs Names Top Texas Destinations for Dogs
January 27, 2014 • Travel
FIDO's Destination of the Day is Texas, and this new travel guidebook from DogTipper proves Texas has gone to the dogs!
Looking for an inexpensive day trip or camping getaway with your dog? The answer just might lie in one of the many dog-friendly Texas state parks. From beaches to lakes, piney woods to rolling plains, you and your four-legged buddy will find an array of parks that offer miles of hikes, swims, and relaxation for the two of you to share.
“Our dogs love visiting state parks,” explains Paris Permenter, co-author of the newly-published DogTipper’s Texas with Dogs guidebook covering the top dog-friendly attractions, accommodations, restaurants, and shops in the Lone Star State. Permenter and her husband, John Bigley, also traveled the state with their dogs Irie and Tiki to see firsthand if the parks would welcome man’s best friend, especially larger dogs like the couple’s 70-pound rescues.
“We found such an inviting atmosphere at the parks,” recalls the Texas-based author. “Our dogs have romped on the beaches, swam in the lakes, and hiked along with us. Dogs are required to be on a leash no longer than six feet long but we found that, with few exceptions such as the designated human swimming areas or the shelter and cabin camping areas, our dogs were very welcome in the parks.”
Although the choice was difficult, the couple—and their dogs—selected the parks they found as the most dog-friendly state parks in Texas - here are a few of their top picks:
Inks Lake State Park. With its crushed granite shallows, the lake waters are some of the clearest in the state. A no-wake zone in much of the lake also makes this park attractive to dogs that might otherwise be frightened of boat noise or dogs that are new to traveling. The 1,200-acre park offers camping, fishing, lakeside picnicking, and plenty of wildlife viewing opportunities.
Enchanted Rock State Natural Area. A 640-acre granite dome, second in size only to Georgia’s Stone Mountain, Enchanted Rock is the largest stone formation in the West. Named for the creaking sounds that the Native Americans heard from the rock as it cooled during the night, Enchanted Rock offers plenty of fun for dogs of all activity levels, from picnicking and a base trail around the rock to gentle hikes up the main formation to more difficult climbs on the smaller formations. In the warm weather months of April through October, it’s best to get out here early before the granite heats up (or bring booties for your dog’s paws). On weekends and holidays, the park limits the number of visitors. You’ll find both primitive and walk-in campsites but bring supplies from nearby Fredericksburg.
Pedernales Falls State Park. Although dogs (and people) are not permitted on the cascading falls for which the park is named, you’ll find plenty of downstream fun beneath the cypress trees. Enjoy a day of swimming and wading with your dog as well as picnicking, camping, and hiking. Note: this park can experience dangerous flash floods. If you notice even a slight rise in the river, you should get to higher ground immediately. The park has sirens to warn of an approaching flash flood but stay alert to changing conditions.
Dinosaur Valley State Park. It’s not just everywhere you can compare your dog’s paw to the footprint of a dinosaur…but here’s your chance. This unique state park contains real dinosaur tracks right in the bed of the Paluxy River. You and Fido can wade in the river (some tracks are submerged, some are in the banks, depending on the water level) and touch the tracks made by Theropod and Sauropod dinosaurs. You’ll also find plenty of swimming, hiking on trails, picnicking and camping, and you can’t miss the two fiberglass dinosaur models in the park: a 70-foot Apatosaurus and a 45-foot Tyrannosaurus Rex.
About DogTipper’s Texas with Dogs
Published by Open Road Guides and distributed by Simon and Schuster, this full-color guidebook covers the best accommodations, attractions, parks, dog parks, dog-centric festivals and more across the state of Texas. The guide is written by husband-wife team, Paris Permenter and John Bigley who also publish DogTipper.com, a 10,000+ page site featuring tips for dog lovers, giveaways, recipes, and more. Paris Permenter, a certified dog trainer and America’s Pet Economist™, also co-hosts the weekly Dog Travel Experts radio show with tips on traveling with your dog. For more information, visit www.dogtipper.com and www.TexaswithDogs.com .