If you’re a Bellingham area dog, and you enjoy the freedom of running around and sniffing the butts of other dogs without the encumbrance of a leash, then you will enjoy this post. If, instead, you are the owner of a Bellingham area dog, and you enjoy letting your dog sniff said butts without the awkwardness of being tied to said dog, you, too, will enjoy this post. If you are a person who enjoys sniffing the butts of dogs or other people, you have some serious issues to deal with on your own, and may or may not enjoy this post.
Though there are several parks in Bellingham with off-leash dog areas, my personal favorite is the Post Point park in Fairhaven, which is a beautiful, secure place to let your dogs run free and chit-chat with their peers. To find it, head West on Harris Ave. and turn left at 4th St. across from the Alaska ferry terminal. Parking is on the right, just before the trail that heads down to the park. Once there, you can also walk the short trail to the shores of Bellingham Bay for a change of scenery.
My other favorite is Lake Padden’s off-leash area, which is great because it happens to be situated at the East end of the lake, right where the off-leash trails begin, so you have the choice of sitting down and letting your dog play with others, or letting her/him/it run alongside you through the hills above the lake. To find it, head South on Samish Way to the east entrance to Lake Padden. Follow the road to the end, past the baseball fields.
For details on Bellingham off-leash dog parks, click here to see the official City of Bellingham list, including specific rules and regulations. Please note the part prohibiting hunting. I’m not sure what year it was when they made that law, but it seems, at least to me, more than slightly absurd to think someone would consider hunting at a dog park. I mean, it’s not like this is Texas!