Northeast Ohio loves its dogs and walks so much that one local lady from North Canton invented the ‘WoofPack’ – a wearable pouch that is designed to carry dog poop while you’re out on walks so that you’re completely hands-free. Akron has plenty of walking routes and trails that are dog-friendly, as well as being scenic and offering an easy or challenging hike for yourself.
Bike and hike trail
A bike and hike trail covers Cuyahoga, Portage and Summit and is a total of 34.2 miles. There are trail end points on Alexander Road, 0.25 miles west of Dunham Road, Judson Road and Hudson Road. Despite being so close to Akron and Cleveland, it covers a lot of natural areas, including the 65-foot Brandywine Falls, making it a peaceful and scenic walk for dogs and owners.
The route also has bridge crossings and both rural and suburban neighborhood roads with dips and rises throughout.
Gorge Metro Park
Gorge Metro Park is located in Cuyahoga Falls and has several different trails in it that are perfect for dog-walking. There’s the 1.8 mile Glens Trail that is rated easy, a steep 1.8-mile Gorge Trail and the moderate 3.2-mile High Bridge Trail. Dogs can explore everywhere except picnic areas, as long as they are kept on leads and tidied up after. The Cuyahoga River runs through the park, with a dam and waterfall surrounding the beautiful and peaceful trails.
Ohio and Erie Towpath Trail
This is a huge trail that currently stretches 81.1 miles but will eventually extend to New Philadelphia for a total of 110 miles. You can start in the heart of Akron and work your way to places like Cuyahoga National Park to further explore, which is great for energetic dogs and pups.
The towpath largely follows an historical canal from Cleveland south to Bolivar, giving dogs plenty of things to sniff, and sightings of wildlife are common, so it may be best to keep them on leads if you’re unsure of how they’ll react.
Cascade Valley Metro Park
There are several different trails on offer at Cascade Valley Metro Park, depending on how difficult of a walk you’re after, how far you and your dog want to walk and if you’re after beautiful views at the same time.
One of the shortest and easiest trails is the Overlook Trail, totaling just 0.5 miles, making it perfect for short walks and older dogs. It gives you unbeatable views of the Cuyahoga River from the viewing area and is flat throughout. The longest trail is the High Bridge Trail that can be accessed from Gorge Metro Park. A moderate trail is the Oxbow Trail that has a steep, uphill climb, is a total of 1.2 miles and can connect to the Overlook Trail for a longer walk and additional scenery.
Before picking and setting out on one of Akron’s trails, make sure your dog is wearing an ID tag and has a microchip in case you get separated. Check to see if there are any rules, like keeping them on a leash and if there’s any areas that they’re not allowed in. Pick a trail based on your dog’s age and fitness as you don’t want to get halfway round and realize they’re struggling as there’s too many inclines or it’s too far for them.