Submission Guidelines

The goal of Alice Pancake’s Dog Park Tour is to provide useful information for dog owners about off-leash areas. We’ve found that although most cities and towns have locations of off-leash areas on their websites, no further details are provided.

We visit dog parks and rate them based on a variety of elements such as:

  • Parking
  • General cleanliness
    • do people pick up after their dawgs?
    • are there enough garbage receptacles?
    • etc.
  • Is the park grassy, dirt/mud, rocky, etc.
  • Is it fully fenced, partially fenced, not fenced?
  • Is there a separate, fenced area for small dogs and/or puppies?
  • Is there water for pups to swim/paddle in?
  • If it’s a river, what’s the flow and approximate depth?
  • If it’s a pond, does it get stagnant?
  • Are there bathrooms for humans?
  • How are the other dogs and people? Are they friendly? Are the dogs generally under control? This one will be a judgement call and should probably only be mentioned if you’ve been to the park a number of times. We don’t want to give a bad report based on one visit.
  • Are there any hazards present?
    • Gopher holes
    • Wild animals (we have coyotes, cougars, bears, deer, and elk in some of the parks we go to)
  • Other details you feel are important or noteworthy.

The ratings are 1/1.5/2/2.5/3/3.5/4 paws with 2 being “a fairly normal/average off-leash area”. To earn 4 paws, a park needs to be stellar in some way; features, size, scenery, etc. Go with your gut. If you love a park, explain why. Same goes if you don’t like it.

You don’t have to do a full write-up if you don’t want to. Send some bullet points and we’ll write the copy. In either case, we retain editorial control and will make sure the review is consistent with the overall vibe of the site. Direct access to the site as a contributing editor will be considered for anyone who contributes regularly. is 100% family friendly. No questionable language or content will be posted.

Send as many pictures as you’d like. We prefer links to Dropbox, Google Drive, etc. if there are more than 3 pictures. We prefer pictures without humans in them if at all possible, however, if you’d like to send along a shot of you and your pup to be posted next to your by-line, please do so. All other pictures will be posted in a gallery or slide-show format.

Have a look at this post for an example of what we’re looking for in a review.

Please include a Google Maps link to the park so we can point people to the exact location of the off-leash area.

Please send reviews to

Thanks for reading this. Now go walk your dog…and then…you know…tell us about it 🙂