Off-Leash Tacoma: Wapato Park

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You and your dog can get off-leash in the South End at wonderful Wapato Park’s dog park. We started going with Dandie as soon as she was fully vaccinated and got the go-ahead from our vet, and we continue visiting regularly with our grownup pup. We see every kind of dog, meet friendly people too, and love watching all those mutts chase and play. Of course, there is a fair amount of butt-sniffing involved; welcome to the dog park.

Wapato Off-Leash Dog Park Key Features

  • Fully-fenced

  • Water available spring-summer (shuts off during the winter months)

  • Separate small dog area for dogs 25 lbs and under

  • 2 "All Dog" areas connected by gates
    - Area near the entrance is level and open and connects to a partially wooded hillside enclosure with trails

  • Easy parking

  • Poop bags available in case you forget yours

  • Dog park is located at the Northeast side of Wapato Park

 View of the All Dogs area with Small Dogs enclosure in the background.

View of the All Dogs area with Small Dogs enclosure in the background.

Meeting a new pal on the upper level trail.

Meet and Greet or Take a Stroll

Rarely does Dandie find a lack of playmates at this park, but if it’s a slow day, there’s plenty of room for fetch or a walk. Near the entrance there’s a covered area with a picnic table where you can sit and find shade, and it’s also where you’ll find running water in the spring and summer months. Hang out here to give your dog a chance to meet and greet all the canines coming and going. Even if your pup isn’t big on getting scrappy and wrassling with other dogs, you haven’t wasted a trip; just take a stroll instead. You can make a big loop of the lower section and head-up to the hillside enclosure as well. The layout of this park gives you the chance to keep moving, or get settled to watch dogs play.

Small Dogs

If you brought a small-sized dog who prefers to keep company with other little pups, head into the small dog arena where you’ll also find a covered area and picnic table, room to play fetch, and the opportunity to walk a loop around the edges of this separate section.

Do Your Duty

It’s up to us to keep dog parks a great place to play. You know what I’m getting at - bring those bags! I like the sign down at Ruston Way with a grinning dog that says, “I poop, you pick it up. Any questions?” Exactly! Scoop that poop! It’s not someone else’s job.

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On-Leash Wapato Lake Loop

If you want to spend some time on leash training or just go for a nice on-leash walk, take the gate out of the fenced dog park area, and head toward Wapato Lake. The paved loop around the lake is nearly 1 mile, and can be extended if you take the Pipeline Trail too. There will be birds, kids at a playground, pedestrians, and sometimes bikes as well, so this is a great opportunity for socializing your pal, or just getting more exercise in the fresh air.

Bring your dog out to romp at Wapato; we’ll see you there!

 Dandie's first trip to the dog park!

Dandie's first trip to the dog park!