21 Pet-Friendly Things to Do | Jackson MI

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If you plan to explore Jackson, Michigan, why not take your dog with you? There are tons of dog-friendly things to do and venues to visit. If you have friends or family visiting the area, several places allow your pet to stay with you. And your options for pet supplies and services are not limited. Check out these best pet-friendly things to do Jackson MI has to offer.

pet-friendly campground jackson michigan
photo via @luna_loo_stewart on Instagram

Pet-Friendly Walking Trails in Jackson MI

If you enjoy taking walks with your dog, be sure to check out some of Jackson County’s best walking trails. All trails require pets to be on a leash and encourage you to bring along supplies for any cleanup needed.

Falling Waters Trail

The Falling Waters Trail is a popular 10-mile paved trail for biking, walking, and running. It’s 12 feet wide and connects Jackson to the Village of Concord. Since the trail winds through natural lakes and springs, your pet will enjoy exploring it with you. About midway, you can take in the scenery of Lime Lake.

Dahlem Nature Center

On Jackson’s south side, the Dahlem Nature Center‘s Butterfly Trail – located off Wickwire Rd in Jackson – is a dog-friendly trail. Look for the Big White Barn and Community Gardens and enjoy watching the pollinators at work while exercising your four-legged friend.

MacCready Reserve

Take a virtual tour of MSU’s MacCready Reserve in Jackson County, then grab your four-legged friend and a leash. MacCready Yellow, Blue and Red Loop is a 2.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Clarklake, Michigan, that offers the chance to see wildlife and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, running, and nature trips and is best used from April until September. Explore the pet-friendly hiking trails together!

best pet-friendly trails in jackson
photo via @drail154 on Instagram

Pet-Friendly Parks in Jackson MI

Spending an afternoon at the park with your pet is a great way to burn off some energy and enjoy some of the best pet-friendly things to do Jackson MI has to offer. Here are some of our favorite Jackson area parks to visit with our furry friends.

Paw Playground

Next to the Cascades Humane Society is Paw Playground, the only off-leash dog park in Jackson. The area has a fence around it, making it a great place for your pet to run free and play with other dogs. There are areas for small and large breeds and benches for you to relax too. The park is free to use – just make sure that you clean up after your pet before you leave.

Sparks Foundation County Park

There are a plethora of activities, one-of-kind sights, and nature at Sparks Foundation County Park. Renowned for The Cascades, an illuminated waterfall, the park has paved paths and welcomes domestic pets and service animals. Just keep your dog on a leash that’s 6 feet or shorter, clean up after it, and don’t let it disturb the other visitors or wildlife. Sparks Park is also home to the dog-friendly, Paws in the Park 5k.

Ella Sharp Park

You’ll find miles of trails through wooded areas at Ella Sharp Park, and your pet can explore them with you. It’s worth walking the trails just to view the beautiful flower gardens. However, the park also has playgrounds, fields for recreational activities, and golf and disc golf courses.

Rod Mills Memorial Park

On Jackson County’s north side, Rod Mills Park is a popular place for families and pet-lovers to enjoy getting outdoors. The park includes hiking trails, baseball diamonds, soccer fields, a playground area, picnic tables, and grills. Enjoy walking the trails with your pup, or play a round of frisbee in the open fields. Just be sure to have a leash handy and clean up after any messes.

pet-friendly trails in jackson
photo via @andrewtorrisi on Instagram

Pet-Friendly Restaurants in Jackson MI

We all know about Biggby Coffee’s pup cup, but did you know that there are several other pet-friendly restaurants in Jackson County, Michigan?

House of Tacos

Any time that you’re craving Mexican cuisine, House of Tacos is one of Jackson’s hidden treasures, and you don’t have to leave your pet behind. This pet-friendly restaurant has picnic tables outside so that your dog can join you. The menu includes a range of burritos, chips and salsa, tacos, hot dogs, burgers, and more.

Bella Notte Ristorante

For an Italian meal, Bella Notte Ristorante is a dog-friendly restaurant with several outdoor tables. In addition to pasta, pizza, flatbread, and panini dishes, the distinct menu includes a range of chicken, seafood, and fish dishes. There’s plenty on the dessert menu too, such as creme brulee and peanut butter cheesecake.

Clear Lake Grill

A local, family-owned restaurant, Clear Lake Grill is a dog-friendly restaurant serving pizza and burgers. Dog owners wanting to enjoy a snack or a meal alongside their furry friend can do so at one of its two outdoor picnic tables. The grill’s menu includes appetizers, soups, salads, pizzas, burgers, sandwiches, subs, and desserts. Fans of Clear Lake Grill recommend ordering the Clear Lake Special Pizza.

Sandhill Crane Vineyards

If you’re looking for handcrafted wine, Sandhill Crane Vineyards is one of the best venues in Jackson. Making it even better is its pet-friendly Crane Cafe, which has several outdoor tables on a wraparound deck. You get a fantastic view of the vineyard while you enjoy a snack or meal with a glass of wine.

pet-friendly restaurants in jackson mi
photo via @kat_yaks on Instagram

Best Pet-Friendly Coffee & Dessert Spots

Want to grab a cup of coffee or a sweet treat with your furry friend in tow? Here are a few ice cream and coffee shops in Jackson County that welcome your leashed dog to join you.

Biggby Coffee on Wisner

While you and your dog enjoy some of the best pet-friendly things to do Jackson MI offers, take a break at Biggby Coffee on Wisner. This location has a couple of tables outside where you can sip on coffee or tea and have a snack with your canine companion. The coffee shop’s menu features bagels, doughnut holes, cookies, muffins, and yogurt for you and pup cups for your furry friend.

Dockside Ice Cream

For a chilly treat, check out Dockside Ice Cream just outside of Jackson in Horton. This dog-friendly dessert spot is open seasonally and has an outdoor table so that you can eat ice cream with your pet. Along with cones, flurries, shakes, and sundaes, the menu includes burgers, hot dogs, sandwiches, and more.

Screamin’ Mimi’s Ice Cream

Nobody loves dogs more than Mimi, and she’s always happy to greet your pup with a sweet treat and doggy biscuit! Halfway between Vandercook Lake and Napoleon on M-50, Screamin’ Mimi’s is a popular ice cream shop that offers soft-serve and hand-dipped ice cream (including a non-dairy raspberry sorbet option) along with coney dog specials.

pet-friendly ice cream shop jackson
photo via Screamin’ Mimi’s Ice Cream on Facebook

Pet-Friendly Accommodations in Jackson MI

Whether you need to stay locally with your furry family member for the night or are putting up out-of-town guests and their four-legged companion, there are several options for pet-friendly accommodations in Jackson MI.

Dog-Friendly Hotels in Jackson Michigan

There are multiple pet-friendly hotel options in Jackson, Michigan, including TownPlace Suites, Baymont, Hampton Inn, and Home2 Suites. Before you make a reservation, be sure to request details about the hotel’s pet policies. Some of the restrictions and fees may slightly differ.

Pet-Friendly Campgrounds in Jackson County

Camping is a great way to enjoy nature with your family – including your four-legged family member! Most of the campgrounds in Jackson County are pet-friendly, but be sure to call to confirm before making any reservations.

Greenwood Acres Family Campground

Greenwood Acres Family Campground is a wonderful, pet-friendly place to stay in Jackson County’s northwest corner. Spread across 300 acres and more than 1,000 sites in a wooded setting, it’s the largest campground and RV park for families in Jackson County. One mile of the campground sits on Goose Lake, providing lots of water fun for you and your four-legged friend.

Pleasant Lake County Park & Campground

Modern camping facilities are available at this beautiful 21-acre campground in Jackson County, MI. Pleasant Lake County Park & Campground allows domestic pets in the park and campground as long as they are on a leash and you clean up after them. With plenty of activities to choose from and an all-sports lake to play on, you’ll have lots of fun with your four-legged friend!

Hideaway RV Park

Just six miles from downtown Jackson, Hideaway RV Park is a quiet escape from your everyday life without having to travel far to get there! Grab your furry pal and head out on one of the wilderness walking trails or take a paddleboat ride on the spring-fed lake. Daily, weekly, and seasonal rates are available.

best pet camping jackson
photo via @luna_loo_stewart on Instagram

Best Places for Pet Services and Supplies

From pet supplies to service, Jackson Michigan has plenty of options for you to choose from when it comes to caring for your pet.

Tractor Supply Co.

When you’re in need of pet supplies, Tractor Supply Co. has you covered. Don’t be fooled by the name. This store has a range of food, treats, toys, collars, leashes, and tons more items for dogs. It even sells pet apparel and accessories.

Pet Supplies Plus

As the name suggests, Pet Supplies Plus is a one-stop-shop for all of your dog supplies. This store is independently owned and operated, and the friendly staff can help you find any food, treats, collars, or toys that you need. Also, it has a few self-serve pet tubs for bathing your pet and offers grooming services.

Unleashed and lovin’ it!

Featuring 2,500 square feet of indoor play space, Unleashed and lovin’ it is a premier pet care facility in Jackson. It has 1,500 square feet of outdoor play space as well. This venue offers doggy daycare services along with baths and nail trims. On the other hand, you can bathe your pet yourself at its self-serve pet wash.

Crossroads Animal Hospital & Pet Resort

Winning the “Best of Jackson” award multiple times in the past ten years, Crossroads Animal Hospital & Pet Resort is a highly-rated veterinarian and pet boarding location just north of I-94 on Dettman Rd. Whether your pet needs medical attention, a haircut, or just a place to hang out, you can rest assured that he’s in good hands at Crossroads.

Country Garden Veterinary Clinic

Like with humans, ensuring that your pet is healthy involves regular checkups. Country Garden Veterinary Clinic offers high-quality pet care services, including comprehensive medical, dental, and surgical care. On top of that, the clinic has a boarding facility with a clean, safe environment for your pet whenever you need it.

best jackson mi vet
photo via @apichea on Instagram

More of the Best Things to Do Around Jackson

This list only touches on the abundance of dog-friendly things to do in and around Jackson, Michigan. For instance, there are many more biking, hiking, and walking trails to explore. If you want to get out of Jackson County for the day, though, consider some of these day-trip ideas.

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This post was lovingly written and is updated regularly by the team at Join in Jackson!

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