Are Pumpkin Patches Dog-Friendly? 5 Tips to Include Your Pup in the Fall Fun
Fall is one of the best seasons to get outside—the air is crisp, you aren't dripping with sweat or shivering in the cold, and the foliage is too pretty to miss. With the fall season comes lots of farm stands, pumpkin patches, and apple orchards and if you're anything like me, you plan on including your dog in as many fun fall activities as possible.
Pumpkin patches are especially great places to hang with your pup as they're outside, spread out, and mostly safe. Just keep a few tips in mind if you're planning to take your dog along with you.
Are Dogs Allowed at Pumpkin Patches?
While a farm might seem like the perfect place for all animals, not all pumpkin patches are dog-friendly. Many pumpkin patches are part of working farms that have large animals and fields of crops. Before bringing your pup along on your fall adventure, make sure to either call ahead or check the website of the patch or farm you are planning to go to. Many popular fall destinations include a FAQs page on their website or social media, that will specify the rules around bringing personal pets.
Another thing to keep in mind is whether or not your dog would enjoy hanging out in a pumpkin patch, and if it will be a safe activity for them. Many farms are exceptionally busy on weekends in the fall season, and the amount of activity, children, and animals might be overstimulating for some canines. Remember, a fearful dog can be dangerous to both themselves and others around them. If your dog has been stressed around large crowds or other dogs in the past, it might be best to leave him at home for this activity.
What Activities Can Dogs Do at a Pumpkin Patch?
Keep an eye on your favorite farm's fall schedules, as many host specific events for dogs! Some pumpkin patches host dog Halloween costume contests while others might have specific areas that are meant for dogs to exercise and play. For example, Barton Orchards in Poughquag, N.Y. has an off-leash dog park with agility equipment so your dog can get some energy out with some furry friends.
Many pumpkin patches also have adjacent corn mazes and apple orchards that you can spend some time with your pup in. Consider this an extra-special walk for your dog with lots of new things to smell and explore. Keep in mind, while apples and corn are typically safe produce for your pup to eat, apple cores and corn cobs are big no-nos. These could be a choking hazard for your dog, or could cause an obstruction. If you want to give your pup a taste of an apple, make sure to break off a piece for them to enjoy.
5 Tips for Visiting a Dog-Friendly Pumpkin Patch
1. Keep Your Dog on a Leash
Most farms are dog-friendly with the caveat that all pups must stay on a regular-length leash.
2. Pack Accordingly
3. Work on Your 'Leave-It' Cue
Apples and those adorable little gourds look suspiciously like tennis balls to some pups. Work on your 'drop it' or 'leave it' cues before heading out to a patch.
4. Have Your Dog Pee Ahead of Time
You can't always predict when your pup is going to pop a squat but avoid allowing them to use the bathroom in the pumpkin patch itself. Instead, walk your pup ahead of time to relieve themselves. If Fido does lift his leg on a pumpkin, make sure you purchase it. You pee on it, you pay for it!
5. Keep Your Dog Away From Farm Animals
While the farm might have their own farm-dog who loves to run with the goats or hang with the horses, your pup should stay leashed and keep their distance from other animals, for the safety of all parties.
5 of the Best Dog-Friendly Pumpkin Patches in the U.S.
Looking for a great dog-friendly pumpkin patch near you? Here are some that we'd recommend:
Ort Farms in Long Valley, N. J.
Ort farms is dog-friendly and has a ton of fun fall activities including hayrides, a corn maze, pony rides, and more. Leashed pups are welcome in the pumpkin patch but are not permitted on the hayride.
Barton Orchards in Poughquag, N.Y.
Come for the apple and pumpkin picking, stay for the off-leash dog park and local craft beer! Pups are welcome everywhere except the indoor areas and corn maze.
Arata's Pumpkin Farm in Half Moon Bay, Calif.
Located about a half hour outside of San Francisco, Arata's Pumpkin Farm accepts on-leash dogs. Aside from pumpkins, Arata's has a hay maze, train ride, haunted barn, and so much more.
Mr. Bones Pumpkin Patch in Culver City, Calif.
Dogs are welcome on leash Mondays through Thursdays, which is probably the best time for them anyways, as it'll be less crowded. Enjoy the pumpkin patch and various other fall activities!
Bella Organic Farm in Portland, Ore.
Bella Organic Farm has a dog-friendly corn maze, pumpkin patch, and organic wine. The organic farm focuses a lot on solar energy, so you can feel good while having fun!