Castillo de San Marcos Bark Ranger

Image of a dog with ranger hat and badge with a Park Ranger outside of the fort called, Castillo de San Marcos.
Bark Ranger Petey

Become a Bark Ranger

Do you like exploring downtown St. Augustine and the park grounds outside the fort with your canine friend? Review and follow the B.A.R.K. rules while visiting, say the pledge, and earn the Virtual Bark Ranger Badge!

Rules of B.A.R.K.

B = Bag Your Poop

  • Help keep the park's green spaces clean by collecting and disposing of all dog waste. Be sure to carry out the bag with you or throw the bag away into the park's public trash receptacles.

  • Dog feces is not a natural fertilizer. Dogs can carry disease such as parvovirus, giardia and roundworms into the park's wildlife populations. Water sources may also be polluted by dog feces.

A = Always Wear a Leash

  • Pets must be restrained on a leash no longer than 6 feet; retractable leashes extended beyond this limit are prohibited.

  • Leashes protect dogs from becoming lost and from hazards, such as vehicle traffic.

  • Not everyone is a dog person no matter how friendly and well behaved your dog may be. Many people, especially children, are frightened by dogs, even small ones. Uncontrolled dogs can present a danger to other visitors. Leashes also protect the experience of other visitors who may be afraid, allergic, or who do not want a dog approaching them.

  • Unfamiliar sights, sounds, and smells can disturb even the calmest, friendliest, and best-trained dog, causing them to behave unpredictably or bark excessively.

R = Respect Wildlife

  • Dogs can chase and threaten wildlife, scaring birds and other animals away.

  • Please keep your dog at a respectful distance from any animals you may encounter.

K = Know Where To Go

  • Pets should not be left unattended. Summer sunshine poses a threat to pets in vehicles. Don't leave pets alone in a car or tied to an object while visiting.

  • Pets, with the exception of service animals, are not allowed to enter the fort building. They are allowed outside in the moat and on the lawn area surrounding the fort.

Safety Reminders:

  • Have you considered your pet in all your preparations? With a little preparation, you and your pet can have an enjoyable trip to the park.
  • Do you have enough water for yourself and your pet?
  • Does your pet have the endurance for the heat?
  • Summer temperatures can make the park's pavement, boardwalks, and dry sand EXTREMELY HOT. Pets have senstive paw pads that can easily be burned by these surfaces. REMEMBER: If it's too hot for your bare feet, it's too hot for theirs. If you regularly walk in hot conditions consider commercially available coverings for your best friend’s feet, they’ll be glad you did.
Image of an arrowhead. Inside it says, "Castillo de San Marcos Virtual Bark Ranger" and there is a second image of a paw print.
Castillo de San Marcos Virtual Bark Ranger Badge


You have what it takes to become an official Virtual Bark Ranger at Castillo de San Marcos National Monument! All that's left is to read the Bark Ranger Pledge:

"As a B.A.R.K. Ranger, I promise to Bag my pet’s waste, Always leash my pet, Respect wildlife, and Know where we can go."

Right-click on the badge image and save it to your computer or device. You save, print, or share from there.

A stocky brown and white dog stands at attention, staring at the Castillo in the background
Bark Ranger Buddha enjoys the beautiful weather.

Photo by Alicia Day

Castillo de San Marcos National Monument

Last updated: January 10, 2021