Visiting with Your Dog

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that all dog owners maintain at least six feet of distance from other people and animals and keep their dogs on a leash.

New York City’s dogs love Central Park. To ensure visitors and pets alike stay safe, dog owners must follow the rules as outlined by NYC Parks.

Dogs must be on-leash 9:00 am–9:00 pm. Off-leash hours are 6:00 am–9:00 am and 9:00 pm–1:00 am. Even during off-leash hours, dogs must always be leashed in the following locations:

  • Arthur Ross Pinetum
  • Bridle Path
  • Cedar Hill
  • Children's Glade (Great Hill area)
  • Conservatory Garden
  • East Green
  • East Meadow Oval
  • Kerbs Boathouse Plaza
  • The North Woods
  • The Ramble
  • Shakespeare Garden
  • Strawberry Fields
  • Turtle Pond Lawn
  • Other areas where signs requiring dogs to be leashed are posted

Dogs are never allowed in:

  • All ballfields and recreational courts
  • All playgrounds
  • All sand volleyball courts
  • All water bodies, streams, and ornamental fountains
  • Elm islands at the Mall
  • Great Lawn Oval
  • Hallett Nature Sanctuary
  • Lilac Walk
  • Stephanie and Fred Shuman Running Track
  • Sheep Meadow

Dog owners using Central Park have both the privileges and responsibilities established by NYC Parks:

  • Dogs must always be under the control of their owner.
  • Dogs must have a NYC license tag and valid rabies tag.
  • Dogs must not dig, chase, or harm wildlife, damage Park property, or interfere with other Park users.
  • Always clean up after your dog, including dog hair that you brush off in the Park.
  • Please respect signs, fences, and red flags that may indicate temporary closures due to restoration, maintenance, or weather conditions.

In the event that you happen upon a lost dog or your dog goes missing, please contact the Animal Care Centers of NYC.

A happy, leashed dog enjoys the shade of a Park tree.

Dog Owner's Guide

All New Yorkers love Central Park—including the four-legged ones! Check out our Dog Owner’s Guide to Central Park for information about visiting Central Park with your dog.