NYC Resources311Office of the Mayor

Central Park

 Dog-friendly Areas

Enjoy the outdoors with your dog in New York City parks! Remember to be safe, obey the rules, and respect the park and others.

Rules and Regulations

  • New York State law requires that dogs be vaccinated against rabies, and the New York City Health Code requires every dog owner/attendant carry with them proof of current dog license and rabies vaccination while in public. Dog owners may be fined for violation of these laws. To obtain an application for a dog license, please visit the New York City Department of Health website, or call 311. You may also obtain an application from a veterinarian, animal shelter, or pet shop.
  • Dogs must be on a leash (no more than six feet long) at all times, except in dog runs and designated off-leash areas at the prescribed times.
  • You must pick up after your dog and dispose of the waste in containers provided throughout the park.
  • You must prevent your dog from chasing birds, squirrels, and other animals.
  • Dogs are not permitted in playgrounds, zoos, fountains, ball fields, on basketball/handball/tennis courts, in swimming pools/facilities, bathing areas, and New York City beaches (see exceptions below).

Read complete rules & regulations.

Where to Go With Your Dog

Beaches and Bathing Facilties: Dogs are not allowed to enter any bathing facilities, including New York City beaches. However, as a courtesy, leashed dogs are allowed on the sand and boardwalk at Rockaway Beach, Coney Island & Brighton Beach, Manhattan Beach, Midland Beach, and South Beach from October 1 until May 1. Leashed dogs are allowed on the boardwalk/promenade at Orchard, Coney Island, Brighton, Midland, South, and Manhattan Beaches.

Dog Runs: Dog runs are large, fenced-in areas for dogs to exercise unleashed during park hours.

Designated Off-Leash Areas: Some park areas allow dogs to be off leash from the time the park opens until 9:00 a.m. and from 9:00 p.m. until the park closes.

NameAddressTypeAccessibleNotes
Central Park Off-Leash AreaThough there are no enclosed dog runs, there are 23 particularly dog-friendly areas scattered throughout the Park.Off-LeashPlease see Central Park Conservancy's Dog-Friendly Areas document for details.

Directions to Central Park

Know Before You Go

There are currently 4 service interruptions affecting access within this park.

ParkCentral Park

Raccoons in Central Park have tested positive for canine distemper virus. Although the virus cannot be transmitted to humans, it may be transmitted to dogs. Keep your pets safe in the park.

Please avoid wildlife and make sure your pets have up-to-date distemper and rabies vaccines. Keep your pet on a leash, especially during dawn and dusk.

Please call 311 or notify an on-site Parks employee if you see a sick or injured animal.

If you are bitten, wash the wound with soap and water immediately. Call your doctor to see if you need tetanus or rabies shots, and call 311 to report the bite.

The Health Department will continue to monitor this condition.


Anticipated Completion: Summer 2018

ParkCentral Park

Beginning June 27, 2018, Central Park will become entirely car-free. The Central Park transverse roads at 97th, 86th, 79th and 65th Streets will remain open to motor vehicles.

Nature CentersBelvedere Castle Visitor Center

Beginning Monday, February 26, Belvedere Castle will be closed for restoration. The castle will reopen to the public in 2019. To reach our Urban Park Rangers at Central Park, please call (212) 360-1444.

ParkCentral Park

Beginning Monday, February 26, Belvedere Castle will be closed for restoration. The surrounding plaza and terrace remain open, but will also close in the coming weeks. The Belvedere will reopen to the public in 2019. For more information on the restoration of Belvedere Castle, please visit Central Park Conservancy's website.

Was this information helpful?