The Best Places to Hike with Your Dog in Milwaukee

a man and dog hiking on dog friendly hike in wisconsin

The Best Places to Hike with Your Dog in Milwaukee

In this blog, we’ll explore the best places to hike with your dog in Milwaukee, with details on the names, locations, and descriptions of each trail. Whether you and your pup are experienced hikers or just looking for a leisurely stroll, Milwaukee has something for everyone.

Best Dog-Friendly Hikes in Milwaukee

  • Oak Leaf Trail
    Location: Various access points around Milwaukee
    The Oak Leaf Trail is a sprawling, interconnected system of trails that covers over 125 miles in total. This scenic urban route is a fantastic option for hikers of all levels and their canine companions. The paths are generally well-maintained, and the terrain is mostly flat, making it suitable for a leisurely walk or a more vigorous hike, depending on your preference.
  • Havenwoods State Forest
    Location: 6141 N. Hopkins St., Milwaukee
    Havenwoods State Forest is a hidden gem in the heart of Milwaukee. This 237-acre forest offers several hiking trails that meander through woodlands, wetlands, and grassy fields. Dogs are welcome here, but they must be kept on a leash. The trails range from easy to moderate, and you and your pup will enjoy the tranquility of nature in this urban forest.
  • Lion’s Den Gorge Nature Preserve
    Location: 511 High Bluff Dr., Grafton, WI
    Although not technically in Milwaukee, Lion’s Den Gorge Nature Preserve is a short drive away and is worth the trip. The preserve features stunning Lake Michigan views, rugged bluffs, and well-maintained hiking trails. Dogs are welcome but must be on a leash. The trails vary in difficulty, providing options for hikers of all levels.
  • Menomonee River Parkway
    Location: Various access points in Milwaukee
    The Menomonee River Parkway boasts a picturesque trail system that follows the winding Menomonee River. With well-maintained paths and natural beauty, this is a great spot for dog owners looking for a peaceful escape without venturing too far from the city.
  • Whitnall Park
    Location: 5879 S. 92nd St., Franklin, WI
    Whitnall Park, part of the Milwaukee County Parks system, offers an abundance of hiking trails and natural beauty. The Oak Leaf Trail passes through the park, making it a convenient spot for hikers. Dogs are welcome but must be leashed. The park is known for its diverse landscape, including woods, prairies, and the beautiful Boerner Botanical Gardens.
  • Kettle Moraine State Forest – Lapham Peak Unit
    Location: W329 N846 County Highway C, Delafield, WI
    A short drive west of Milwaukee, the Lapham Peak Unit of Kettle Moraine State Forest provides excellent hiking opportunities for both you and your dog. The park offers over 17 miles of trails with varying difficulty levels. The Moraine Ridge Trail is particularly popular and leads to an observation tower with spectacular panoramic views.
  • Cudahy Nature Preserve
    Location: 4000 E. Ramsey Ave., Cudahy, WI
    Cudahy Nature Preserve is a dog-friendly haven located just south of Milwaukee. This serene 32-acre preserve offers a network of well-maintained trails. Dogs can explore the area on a leash while you take in the beauty of the natural surroundings.
  • Scuppernong Trails
    Location: S58 W35820 County Hwy ZZ, Dousman, WI
    Though a bit further from Milwaukee, the Scuppernong Trails within the Southern Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest are well worth the drive. These scenic trails are known for their rolling hills, kettles, and lush woodlands. Dogs are welcome but must be on a leash. The Ice Age Trail segment within the park offers a unique hiking experience, with glacial features and pristine landscapes.
  • Riveredge Nature Center
    Location: 4458 County Hwy Y, Saukville, WI
    A bit north of Milwaukee, the Riveredge Nature Center offers a dog-friendly hiking experience in a diverse natural setting. With over ten miles of trails and various ecosystems, you and your dog can explore woodlands, wetlands, and prairies. Leashed dogs are welcome to accompany you on your hike.
  • Pike Lake State Park
    Location: 3544 Kettle Moraine Rd., Hartford, WI
    While it’s a bit of a drive from Milwaukee, Pike Lake State Park is another excellent option for hiking with your dog. The park features approximately seven miles of hiking trails, including the picturesque Powder Hill Trail. The surrounding forests, hills, and the stunning Pike Lake make this a delightful destination for a day trip.


Milwaukee offers a wide range of hiking opportunities for dog owners, catering to all levels of experience and fitness. From the urban beauty of the Oak Leaf Trail to the more rugged terrain of Lion’s Den Gorge Nature Preserve and Kettle Moraine, there’s a trail for every adventurer and their canine companion. Remember to respect local leash laws, clean up after your dog, protect your pet from the heat on warmer days, and stay safe by being prepared with the necessary supplies before heading out. So, grab your hiking boots, leash up your dog, and embark on an adventure!


Photo by Furry_Portraits from Pixabay