Man hiking with dogs on leash and mountains in background.
Your pets are welcome to explore Dinosaur National Monument like these dogs are doing, as long as you follow the regulations and safety tips on this page.


dog's head

Many people consider their pets members of the family and travel with them on vacation. Unfortunately, pets and wild areas can sometimes result in a dangerous mix. Pets have been attacked by wildlife, harassed and killed wildlife, bitten or disturbed other visitors, and fought with other pets.

Pets are welcome at Dinosaur National Monument, but as a unit in the National Park Service there are regulations regarding pets that are enforced within the monument.

Please Keep Your Pet Leashed

All pets must be on a maximum 6-foot leash or physically restrained at all times. Pets may not be left unattended or tied to an object.

Where Pets Can Go in Dinosaur National Monument

You may walk leashed pets within 100 feet of developed areas such as roads, parking lots, campgrounds, day-use areas, and river launches. Pets are allowed on the following trails along the Harpers Corner Road (Colorado side): Plug Hat Butte and other trails at the Plug Hat Picnic Area, Canyon Overlook, Echo Park Overlook, and Iron Springs Bench Overlook.

In Utah, leashed pets are allowed on the short trail to Swelter Shelter Petroglyphs and the River Trail.

Where Pets Cannot Go in Dinosaur National Monument

Pets are not allowed on the shuttle or in any buildings such as monument visitor centers or the Dinosaur Quarry Exhibit Hall. Please make your visit to these buildings brief or take turns with family members to stay outside with your pet. If visiting the Dinosaur Quarry in summer, tell a ranger you are traveling with a pet and you can drive to the Quarry in your own vehicle.

Pets are not permitted on trails other than those open for pets, in the monument's backcountry, or on river trips. The responsible persons of pets running-at-large will be charged for kennel or boarding costs in addition to veterinarian, transportation, and other possible fees and fines.

Dispose of Pet Waste

All solid pet waste must be promptly collected and thrown away as trash. Garbage cans are located near the visitor centers, at day-use areas and in campgrounds.

Your Pet's Safety

Never Leave Pets in an Enclosed Vehicle! Do not leave pets inside a closed vehicle for even short periods of time, especially in the summer. On even a mildly warm day, the temperature in a parked car can rise to 120°f or more in a matter of minutes - even with the car windows partially open. Pets can quickly overheat and die.

Dinosaur National Monument weather is semi-arid with hot summers. There is little to no shade. Do any hiking with your pet in the early morning or near sunset. Remember to carry plenty of water for you and your pet.

Dinosaur National Monument is home to a variety of wildlife that can be dangerous to you and your pet such as mountain lions and bears. Even a female deer will become aggressive to protect her young. Always keep your pet on a leash.

Many of the wildlife in Dinosaur National Monument carry diseases or parasites such as fleas that may transmit diseases such as rabies, tularemia and plague. Do not let your pet get close to or eat dead animals. Keep your pet on a leash at all times.


Need a Kennel?

Nearby local communities may have kennels for your pets. Contact local organizations to locate a kennel.
Utah Welcome Center
Jensen, UT
Colorado Welcome Center
Dinosaur, CO
Dinosaurland Travel Board
Vernal, UT
Rangely Chamber of Commerce
Rangely, CO
Craig Chamber of Commerce
Craig, CO

Service Animals

How "Service Animal" Is Defined

Service animals are defined as dogs that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities. Examples of such work or tasks include guiding people who are blind, alerting people who are deaf, pulling a wheelchair, alerting and protecting a person who is having a seizure, reminding a person with mental illness to take prescribed medications, calming a person with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) during an anxiety attack, or performing other duties. Service animals are working animals, not pets. The work or task a dog has been trained to provide must be directly related to the person's disability. Dogs whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support do not qualify as service animals under the Americans with Disability Act (ADA).

This definition does not affect or limit the broader definition of "assistance animal" under the Fair Housing Act or the broader definition of "service animal" under the Air Carrier Access Act.

Some State and local laws also define service animal more broadly than the ADA does. Information about such laws can be obtained from the State attorney general's office.

Where Service Animals Are Allowed

Under the ADA, State and local governments, businesses, and nonprofit organizations that serve the public generally must allow service animals to accompany people with disabilities in all areas of the facility where the public is normally allowed to go.

Service Animals Must Be Under Control

Under the ADA, service animals must be harnessed, leashed, or tethered, unless these devices interfere with the service animal's work or the individual's disability prevents using these devices. In that case, the individual must maintain control of the animal through voice, signal, or other effective controls.

Inquiries, Exclusions, Charges, and Other Specific Rules Related to Service Animals

  • When it is not obvious what service an animal provides, only limited inquiries are allowed. Staff may ask two questions: (1) is the dog a service animal required because of a disability, and (2) what work or task has the dog been trained to perform. Staff cannot ask about the person's disability, require medical documentation, require a special identification card or training documentation for the dog, or ask that the dog demonstrate its ability to perform the work or task.
  • Allergies and fear of dogs are not valid reasons for denying access or refusing service to people using service animals. When a person who is allergic to dog dander and a person who uses a service animal must spend time in the same room or facility, for example, in a school classroom or at a homeless shelter, they both should be accommodated by assigning them, if possible, to different locations within the room or different rooms in the facility.
  • A person with a disability cannot be asked to remove his service animal from the premises unless: (1) the dog is out of control and the handler does not take effective action to control it or (2) the dog is not housebroken. When there is a legitimate reason to ask that a service animal be removed, staff must offer the person with the disability the opportunity to obtain goods or services without the animal's presence.
  • People with disabilities who use service animals cannot be isolated from other patrons, treated less favorably than other patrons, or charged fees that are not charged to other patrons without animals.
  • Staff are not required to provide care or food for a service animal.

More Information

  • Graphic showing regulation symbols
    Know Before You Go

    Regulations for sites managed by the National Park Service may be different than other public lands. Check for some of the common rules.

  • Man standing on a rock overlooking a valley of colorful rock layers.
    Places to Go

    Learn about major sites inside the monument.

  • Man holding a bike beside a dirt road.
    Things to Do

    Scenic driving, river rafting, hiking, stargazing, biking, and so much more. There's plenty for you to do at Dinosaur.

Last updated: August 22, 2022

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

4545 Hwy 40
Dinosaur, CO 81610


435 781-7700

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