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Help Your Dog be a Good Cincinnati Nature Center Guest

We’re glad you’ve chosen Cincinnati Nature Center as your place to get outdoors with your dog! Hiking our trails, walking around the Rowe Visitor Center, and exploring at Long Branch Farm & Trails can be unfamiliar, busy, and sometimes overwhelming areas for dogs. All visitors, including dogs, can enjoy their experience at the Nature Center by respecting each other and the guidelines we’ve put in place to keep our visitors, wildlife, and pets safe.

The Nature Center is loved by dogs and their owners, and we work hard to keep it that way. While many nature centers do not allow dogs, we welcome them. We hope that members recognize and help protect that privilege by following our rules for pet/owner conduct.

Register your dog. Cincinnati Nature Center has a dog registration process. We record all dogs and owners on the property daily to enable us to react in an emergency. You may register your dog online by using this Member Dog Registration form or at the Rowe Woods Gatehouse.

Prevent contact between your dog and other guests. Whenever a dog is walked in public, there’s a chance of encountering people who dislike, are afraid of, or act unpredictably around dogs. Likewise, dogs are not predictable when encountering unexpected situations and new people.

  • Do not allow your dog to approach people without their invitation.
  • Instruct children to NEVER approach a dog without the owner’s permission.
  • Take a different trail to avoid a group of school children.
  • Keep your dog tight to you when passing others.
  • Put yourself between your dog and others.
  • Stand to the side to let others pass.

Never allow your dog to sniff another dog without the owner’s permission. A territorial or aggressive dog should be left at home in familiar territory. Sometimes even a well-behaved, friendly dog—when on-leash and walking with his owner—can switch from calm to fierce in an instant. This common behavior is known as “leash aggression.” Move aside or put yourself between your dog and other dogs.

Six-foot leash rules apply to the entire property at all times. We strongly discourage flexi-leashes because they offer less control and extend past our 6-foot length limit. The only time your dog may be off the leash is inside your vehicle.

Clean up after your dog and carry the bag to the nearest garbage can.  The Nature Center provides waste bags and waste receptacles.

Keep your dogs on the path provided. Your dog is a guest at this property, but the wildlife lives here. Don’t allow your dog to chase animals or dig up plants. Dog swimming and wading is prohibited in all ponds, lake, and streams.

Dogs are NEVER permitted in the Nature PlayScape. Many children are afraid of dogs.

Dogs are not allowed in the Nature Center buildings. If you go inside the Rowe Visitor Center, have another person familiar with your dog watch him, or use one of our pet hooks found outside the building.

Keep your dog well-hydrated while hiking. Ensure your dog drinks plenty of fresh, clean water but not from our ponds or streams. Cincinnati Nature Center provides a drinking fountain outside the Rowe Visitor Center, which provides easy dog-drinking access.

Check your dog for ticks and burrs before you leave for home. Natural materials can easily get caught in your dog’s coat or paws.

Keep your dog’s vaccinations up-to-date. This is a state law–vaccinations provide protection.

If you see a dog off-leash, out of control, or in distress, call Visitor Services at (513) 831-1711. Because we record each dog and owner on the property daily, we should be able to locate the owner and follow up appropriately.

Cincinnati Nature Center is a private member organization committed to respecting our environment and one another. Following proper pet protocol ensures safety, cleanliness, and enjoyable hiking experience for all guests–humans and canines alike. If you find these rules too strict, please leave your dog at home.