A leashed dog on the Prairie Vista trail
Brownie the Bark Ranger patrols the Prairie Vista Trail. As a Bark Ranger, she ensures that all pets are cleaned up after and leashed.

NPS Photo / Callie Tominsky

Pets are welcome at Wind Cave National Park within the following limits:

  • At all times pets must be restrained on a leash no longer than six feet in length. Leashes protect dogs from becoming lost and from potential encounters with wildlife as well as protecting park wildlife and plants.
  • Pets should not be left unattended. Summer sunshine poses a threat to pets left in vehicles. On a sunny day, even in temperatures as low as 60°F, temperatures inside a vehicle can reach dangerous levels. On an 85°F day the temperature inside a car –even with the windows cracked –can reach over 100°F (38°C) within 10 minutes.
  • Pet owners are responsible for removing pet waste from campgrounds, picnic areas, parking lots, roads, and other developed areas.
  • Pets are not permitted in the back-country areas of the park. This includes areas near park roadways and most of the trails –see below for exceptions.

Where CAN I go with my pet?

Where CAN'T I go with my pet?

  • Ranger-led programs and cave tours.
  • Public buildings including the visitor center.
  • The backcountry or any trails except those listed above.

Pet Boarding in Hot Springs and Custer:

  • Fall River Veterinary Clinic: (605) 745-3786; Must have proof of vaccinations.
  • Southern Hills Animal Clinic: (605) 673-4996

More Information

For more information about pet rules and regulations at Wind Cave, read the 36 Code of Federal Regulation (CFR) 2.15 in the Superintendent's Compendium.

Last updated: March 18, 2024

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Mailing Address:

26611 US Highway 385
Hot Springs, SD 57747


605 745-4600

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