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It’s Canine Fitness Month: Get Those Pups Active Around LHC!

Did you know April is Canine Fitness Month? While many pet owners love to get outside and be active with their high-energy dogs, there are just as many who are content staying at home, snuggled up with their couch potato pups. Just like with humans, it’s important to find a good mix of activity and leisure time for your pets! Check out these dog-friendly adventures around Lake Hartwell Country for you and your pooch to enjoy.

Leash up your pup and hit the road for some dog-friendly adventures.

Start off with an easier, paved hike to get Fido excited about exercising. The Hartwell Dam trail follows the shoreline of Lake Hartwell, one of the largest and most popular lakes in the Southeast U.S.! Head down to the southernmost end of the lake for this easy trail that’s less than a mile long. You’ll be able to soak in the beautiful scenery and awe-inspiring views of the dam, while your dog will get to explore an exciting new area.


When you’re ready to kick it up a gear, try the Cemetery Loop. Don’t be scared away by the name; this trail loop is only 1.1 miles long but offers a natural surface for a slightly more rugged adventure. You’ll also get to see the historic Lawrence Family Cemetery – just make sure you keep your pup close by and safely away from historical markers and graves. Cemetery Loop is part of the Clemson Experimental Forest’s system of trails, so if your adrenaline is still pumping after this loop, there are plenty more options within the forest for you to trek through!


For a longer route, head out to the Doodle Trail. This paved trail is 7.5 miles long and connects downtown Pickens with downtown Easley. Friendly for bikers, strollers, and yes, dogs, you’re likely to encounter all kinds of athletes on the trail. This path is perfect for running or even biking as your pup jogs alongside you! If you start in Pickens, you’ll end with the perfect reward for both of you at the Silos of Easley, as you sip on a craft beer from Silos Brewing while they enjoy the dog-friendly atmosphere at the Grainyard common space.

On dry land or on the water, always take precautions to keep you and your pet safe.

For all these adventures, make sure you’re taking precautions to keep you and your dog safe, along with wildlife, other hikers, and other pets. Your dog should always be leashed in public spaces, especially in areas with heavy traffic or where there are hazards like cliffs or water nearby. Speaking of water-based activities, always ensure your dog has a pet-safe life jacket on if you’re going on a boating or paddling trip, and just like a child, watch closely whenever they are in the water.


A little off-leash fun is always welcome, though, so check out a dog park where your four-legged companion can run free and make new pals! If you’re in the Anderson area, there are several options, including the City of Anderson’s public dog park on Fant Street. Or, swing by the Anderson County P.A.W.S. animal shelter’s unique park, where the fenced-in runs are shaped like paw prints. But be warned: if you visit the latter, you may find yourself taking another furry friend home with you! A little further north, the Nettles Dog Park is nestled between Clemson and Pendleton, and it offers lots of space for dogs to play and run.


We hope you’ll get out and make the most of Lake Hartwell Country’s beautiful scenery and amenities during Canine Fitness Month – but you can certainly increase your dog’s activity levels right at home, too. Consider starting a dedicated walking routine, where you and your pup take longer walks around your neighborhood. Get them active for longer playtimes, such as lengthier games of fetch. You don’t even need a fenced-in yard: grab a ball and have them chase it back and forth indoors. And as summer temperatures start to heat up, find a kiddie pool at the store, fill it up, and let them splash around to cool down. The possibilities are endless!

You can't miss the Anderson public dog park on Fant Street thanks to this cute sculpture!

While we certainly all love to snuggle on the couch with our pets, we know healthy dogs are happy dogs – and that means happy owners. Leash up your dog and hit the great outdoors for Canine Fitness Month, and you’ll love the new bonding experiences you and your pet have together here in Lake Hartwell Country.

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