Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post. However, I will always offer my readers an unbiased and honest account of my experiences. Your trust is very appreciated, and never taken for granted. ~Tonya, Dexter and Angel Nutter
For the last six years, we Cavalier King Charles Spaniel parents have been gathering at the Indiana Dunes State Park for a Cavaween Halloween party. The Indiana Dunes has such a great dog-friendly beach, walking trails, and covered shelter house with a fireplace, it is a great destination for our party. Cavalier families travel from all across the Midwest to meet up and celebrate our love for our dogs.
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Taking a road trip with my dog, Dexter, is one of my favorite activities. I’ve always found that traveling with dogs is a wonderful way to experience a new destination and to think outside of the box when planning a road trip. I’ve been known to hit the open road with just Dexter, but it is a lot of fun to travel with friends so, I invited Dexter’s BFF, Levi, and his mom, Chris, along on our dog-friendly vacation in the Midwest.
Dog-friendly beaches can be tricky to find. Personally, I prefer dog beaches that require dogs to stay on their leash vs. off-leash dog beaches. Maybe it’s my 20+ years as a professional dog trainer and having heard about so many bad experiences from clients or that Dexter isn’t a romper, but I tend to stick to beaches with an on-leash rule. This is why I love and appreciate the Indiana Dunes. They offer plenty of pristine and beautiful dog-friendly beach areas but require dogs to stay on a 6′ leash.
After our Cavaween party, we decided to continue our dunes adventure. We walked the dogs along the State Park. It was truly enjoyable to see the diverse ecosystem. The birds were bustling around, and the milkweed seed pods were opening and blowing in the wind. Dexter loves to smell and really enjoyed smelling the cool lake breeze.
The one thing we knew we wanted to do with the dogs at the Indiana Dunes was to see the sunset on Lake Michigan. The weather was going to cooperate, so we packed a picnic and ate dinner on the beach, bundled up against the evening breeze. The Indiana Dunes is an all-season destination, not just a summer adventure.
Our sunset picnic was such a serene experience. We enjoyed watching the families run up and down the beach. Kids were skipping rocks in the lake, and couples were capturing their evening with selfies on the beach as the sun set behind them.
I could see the Chicago coastline as the sunset. The colors were incredible. It started as a soft purple-and-pink sky and then shifted from light purple to brilliant red and orange. I’ve never experienced such a bright red sky. It was an extraordinary way to end our night.
The Indiana Dunes encompasses more than 15,000 acres of beaches, savannas, forests, prairies, and wetlands. With more than 70 miles of trails stretching up and around Lake Michigan’s breathtaking coastline, it’s definitely one of my favorite dog-friendly beach vacations.
When planning your pet-friendly Indiana Dunes vacation, visit Indiana Dunes Visitor Center for your Pet Guide and The Top Ten Pet-Friendly Stops. The Indiana Dunes Visitor Center offers helpful advice, brochures, and coupons you won’t want to miss.
Do you travel with your dog? Tell me in the comments.
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