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Guidelines for our Dog Playgrounds
Recommendations for Fun and Safety

Both Pawster Pooch Playground and Camp Canine are open from 6:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m. daily.  The maximum number of dogs in the playgrounds at any given time is 50. Please limit your visit to one hour during times of peak use.

  • All dogs must have their "Pass" visibly displayed on their collar while inside the playground.
  • Rabies tags must be worn and displayed by all dogs at all times
  • Always keep an eye on your dog. Never leave your dog unattended.
  • Dogs known to exhibit vicious, fierce, aggressive, or dangerous behavior are not permitted in the Dog Playgrounds. If your dog becomes unruly or aggressive toward other dogs, you must leash your dog and exit the enclosure.
  • Always clean up after your dog. It's the law. A container is available in the park for this purpose. Please bring your own bags.
  • Female dogs in season are not permitted in the playground and should not be brought to the park.
  • Dogs, owners, and users creating a disturbance or violating posted rules must leave the playground if requested by law enforcement personnel, park personnel, or their designated agents.
  • Don't bring more than three dogs to the playground.
  • Dogs under four (4) months of age are not permitted in the playground. Puppies are not fully vaccinated, and are vulnerable to disease and injury.
  • Children under fourteen (14) years of age must be accompanied by an adult.
  • Dogs may not be left unattended or out of sight range or voice command.
  • Dogs must be on a 6' leash until safely inside the playground enclosure (corral). It's the law.
  • Please remove pinch (prong) collars and spike collars from dogs before entering the park. Other dogs can be injured while playing.
  • No wolves or wolf hybrids allowed.
  • Do not bring glass containers to the facility.
  • Do not bring food (people food, dog food or dog treats) into the playground. Many owners do not feed treats and some dogs may be allergic. Food may also make a docile dog aggressive.
  • Do not smoke in or around the playground. Cigarette butts and food wrappers are unhealthy for dogs.
  • Maintenance needs of the site will vary based on weather and use. You are asked to vacate the playground during maintenance activities.
  • Check all entrances before unleashing your dog.
  • Dogs should receive year-round heartworm prevention treatment.
  • Have drinking water readily available for your dog before and especially after exercise.  You must provide your own water and bowls.
  • ALL dogs benefit from guidance and structure.  Basic obedience is a must for a well-socialized happy dog.
  • Do not open the outside gate if an inside gate is open.


Be Aware of Risks

While it may be tempting to stand back and be a passive observer, all users will have a much more rewarding experience if basic rules are actively observed. Use of the Dog Playground is not a right - it is a privilege. Please do not allow unacceptable or irresponsible behavior to ruin the fun for other users.

Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation strives to provide a fun, safe environment for you and your dog. However, by using this facility you agree that you understand and assume all responsibility and liability for the risks of unleashing your dog in the facility.

Potential risks include, but are not limited to:

  • Infectious diseases such as rabies, kennel cough or Lyme disease.
  • Dog theft or unlawful capture by other people.
  • Dog escapes over or under fences.
  • Plants and/or water sources in the park that may be poisonous to dogs.
  • Park vegetation that may have burrs or seeds that could get tangled in a dog's coat or lodge in a dog's feet, ears, or eyes.
  • Mosquitoes, ticks, chiggers, fleas or other insects that may be present.
  • Dog fights, dog bites and injuries to humans and other dogs.
  • Wild animals in the parks such as skunks, raccoons, or stray dogs, all of which might injure or infect your dog.
  • Young children are easily knocked over or trampled by running dogs.
  • Herding dogs may nip at children while attempting to round them up.
  • This is the dog's park. There are plenty of other parks and playgrounds where children can be socialized. Not all dogs are child-friendly. Never allow your child to approach or pet a dog without the owner's presence and approval.
  • Parents: If you do bring your children into the Dog Playground, please teach them how to behave with animals and what to do in an emergency:

Never run! Hide face. Tuck arms and legs into body. Curl up in a ball, face down on hands and knees. Be as still and quiet as possible. Wait for help or until the dog has left.

In order for the bite to be defined as a bite - it must break the skin and must have been caused by oral contact (not a nail scratch).

A dog bite to a human or another animal must be reported. The biting animal will be quarantined for ten days to ensure it is healthy and does not pose a rabies risk. In this case, the bite most likely happened inside the confines of the Dog Playground so the dog will be considered legally restrained at the time of the bite. If a dog bite happens while at the park:

  • Immediately secure the biting dog and the victim dog. Leash them and keep separated.
  • Any wounds should be washed immediately with clean water.
  • Owners of dogs involved should exchange names, addresses, and telephone numbers.
  • Owners should then take their dog home or to a veterinarian for necessary medical care. If a bite has occurred to a person, consult a physician.
  • If the biting dog's owner lives inside the city limits of Fort Wayne they should call to dispatch an Animal Control Officer to take a bite report and enact quarantine.

    Fort Wayne Animal Care and Control: 427-1244
    On weekends and holidays call: 427-1222

  • If the biting dog's owner lives in Allen County outside the city limits, call:

Allen County Sheriff's Animal Control at 449-7491

  • Dogs who have bitten while at the Dog Playgrounds will not be allowed to return.

**Dog Playgrounds are not staffed or supervised by any agent or employee of Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Department or the City of Fort Wayne. Users therefore are required to abide by posted rules and etiquette at all times while on the premises. Police and Animal Control Officers will make periodic site visits.**

Dog owners and individuals accompanying them use the facility entirely at their own risk and that of their dogs.  Owners are responsible and liable for the actions and behavior of their dogs at all times.  Neither Parks and Recreation nor the City of Fort Wayne assumes liability for loss, damage, or any kind of injury sustained by any human or dog while using the Dog Playground.

It is important to familiarize yourself with pertinent City Ordinances that apply to this playground as well as parks and park facilities in general.  Visit our Park Ordinances  page for more information.

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Photo courtesy of Denny Beck


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Lindenwood Nature Preserve protects a piece of Fort Wayne’s natural woodland habitat in an undisturbed manner. Please abide by these simple rules when visiting the preserve:

  • No collecting. This includes plants, animals, leaves, feathers, rocks, nuts, mushrooms, etc.
  • Remain on the marked trails when exploring the preserve.
  • No littering; Carry out what you carry in.
  • No camping, fires, hunting, trapping, fishing or digging.
  • No pets.
  • No bikes or motorized vehicles.
  • No camping. 

Stewards of the Woods

The volunteer opportunities at Lindenwood Nature Preserve are endless. Our Stewards of the Woods act as trail guides (training provided), desk attendants, wildlife observers, water quality monitors and more. Volunteers of all ages are invited to become Stewards. Call Eden Lamb 260-427-6008 or e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.   

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Reservoir Guidelines

Please Do:

remove your trash.
carry one life jacket per person in all boats at all times.
tilt up gasoline motors from your boat before launching.
be courteous to others.
have a good time!

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Please Don't:

swim in the reservoir.
bring alcoholic beverages into the reservoir.
bring pets unless they are on a leash.
use gasoline powered motors.
lose rental tickets (the daily fee will be charged).
exceed your rental time (any fraction of an hour will be charged a full hour).
overload rental boats (limit 3 persons per boat).
remove or disturb large rocks on bank - they are for ice control. clean fish on the premises.
disturb wildlife such as snakes, ducks, birds


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Upcoming Events of Interest to Nature Lovers      

  

 

Fall Hikes and Programs!

Hike flyer

Invasive Plants ID Hike

Learn how to identify invasive plant species in Northeastern Indiana in preparation for Invasive Removal Day on the preserve in October. This hike has a recommended age of 10+. There is no fee to participate; however, pre-registration is required. Call 427-6000 by September 19 to sign up. Min. 5. Max. 15.

Code                     Date      Day              Time

448004-S1            9/24       Sa           9-10 am

# Sessions/Fee: 1/Free

Location: Lindenwood Nature Preserve, 600 Lindenwood Ave.

Cómo identificar las diferentes especies de plantas invasoras.

Ven a la Reserva Natural Lindenwood y aprende a identificar las diferentes especies de plantas invasoras en la zona Noroeste de Indiana. La caminata nos ayudará a prepararnos para el día de limpieza de plantas invasoras en la reserva programado en octubre. Esta caminata no tiene costo y es recomendada para edades de 10+. Es necesario registrarse con anticipación. La fecha límite para registrarse es el 19 de septiembre. Llame a la Red de Servicios Lingüísticos – LSN al 260-426-6764 para registrarse. Min. 5. Max. 15.

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sábado 24/9         10:15-11:15 am

# Sessions/Fee: 1/Gratis

Ubicación: Lindenwood Nature Preserve, 600 Lindenwood Ave.


Invasive Plant Removal Day

Saturday, October 15, 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.

Lindenwood Nature Preserve, 600 Lindenwood Ave.

Can you spare a couple of hours to help improve the habitat for native plants and animals at Lindenwood Nature Preserve? The Indiana Native Plant Society (INPS) will be at Lindenwood on October 15 to oversee the removal of invasive such as multiflora, honeysuckle and burning bush. Volunteers (ages 16+) are needed to accomplish the task. A limited amount of hand tools such as loppers and saws will be provided. If you have these items at home please bring your own.


Fungi Fun

On the trees, on the ground, growing all around, but not a plant? It’s fungi, and we’d like to invite you to learn all about it on this free hike. All ages are welcome. Call 427-6000 by October 17 to sign up. Min. 5. Max. 15.

Code                     Date      Day              Time

448006-S1            10/22     Sa           9-10 am

# Sessions/Fee: 1/Free

Location: Lindenwood Nature Preserve, 600 Lindenwood Ave.

 

Todo sobre los hongos

Los hongos crecen en los árboles, en el suelo, por todas partes. Queremos invitarte a que conozcas todo sobre los hongos en esta caminata. La caminata no tiene costo y es recomendada para todas las edades. Es necesario registrarse con anticipación. La fecha límite para registrarse es el 17 de octubre. Llame a la Red de Servicios Lingüísticos - LSN al 260-426-6764 para registrarse. Min. 5. Max. 15.

Español

sábado 22/10          10:15-11:15 am

# Sessions/Fee: 1/Gratis

Ubicación: Lindenwood Nature Preserve, 600 Lindenwood Ave.

 

 

Wild Walkers

2nd and 4th Fridays of each month

Explore some of northeast Indiana’s finest outdoor areas with this nature-oriented group. Wild Walkers is an adult hiking group that meets the second and fourth Fridays of each month for a walk on the wild side. Each hike features a different natural area in the region (parks, wetlands, nature preserves, etc.) and carpooling is available when necessary. The 2022 schedule is posted on our website at www.fortwayneparks.org or you may call Eden at 427-6008 to request a schedule by mail.


Hibernation Hike

Squirrels, raccoons, birds and everything in between. Who is getting ready to hibernate and who is not? Learn what different animals at Lindenwood are doing to prepare for winter, whether that is migrating, hibernating or getting their homes ready to stay nice and warm! All ages are welcome. The hike is free; however, pre-registration is required by November 14. Min. 5. Max. 15.

Code                      Date      Day            Time

448005-S1            11/19     Sa           9-10 am

# Sessions/Fee: 1/Free

Location: Lindenwood Nature Preserve, 600 Lindenwood Ave.

¿Quiénes hibernan?

¿Cuáles son los animales que se preparan para hibernar? ¿Ardillas, mapaches, aves? ¿Hibernan, migran a otros lugares o preparan sus espacios para estar calientitos? Ven a aprender que hacen los animales que viven en Lindenwood para prepararse para recibir el invierno. La caminata no tiene costo y es recomendada para todas las edades. Es necesario registrarse con anticipación. La fecha límite para registrarse es el 14 de noviembre. Llame a la Red de Servicios Lingüísticos – LSN al 260-426-6764 para registrarse. Min. 5. Max. 15.

Español

sábado 19/11               10:15-11:15 am

# Sessions/Fee: 1/Gratis

Ubicación: Lindenwood Nature Preserve, 600 Lindenwood Ave.

 

Fall Foliage
Fall Foliage Final Friday Fun Hike

Come to Lindenwood Nature Preserve for a hike on the Final Friday of October for Fall Foliage Fun. We will enjoy the fall colors before they are gone and spend some time outside before the winter cold gets here. We’ll depart from the parking lot promptly as scheduled. All ages are welcome, so bring the whole family. There is no charge; however, pre-registration is required for planning purposes. Call 427-6000 to sign up. Registration deadline: October 24. Min. 5. Max. 15

Code                     Date      Day                 Time

448006-F1           10/28      F              10-11 am

Fee: FREE

Location: Lindenwood Nature Preserve, 600 Lindenwood Ave.


Stargazing at the Preserve

Twinkle, twinkle little star! Lindenwood Nature Preserve is the perfect place for stargazing! From super moons to meteor showers come join us as we learn about the wonders of the night sky. You will be able to use a telescope to locate planets and constellations in our galaxy. There is no charge; however, registration is required for planning purposes. All ages are welcome. Registration deadlines: September 15, October 14 and November 11. Min. 5. Max. 15.

Code                     Date      Day               Time

448007-F1            9/23       F              9-10 pm

448007-F2            10/21     F              9-10 pm

448007-F3            11/18     F              9-10 pm

# Sessions/Fee: 1/Free

Location: Lindenwood Nature Preserve, 600 Lindenwood Ave.

Lindenwood Guided Hikes & Field Trips

May – October 31

Let us plan a nature outing for your class or group. Lindenwood Nature Preserve offers a variety of hands-on environmental education opportunities perfect for class field trips, birthday parties or other group outings of up to 20 children. For a complete list of programs/topics, please visit the Lindenwood page at fortwayneparks.org. The cost is $3/participant/hour with a minimum fee of $30/$60 for 1-hour/2-hour programs, respectively. Up to 5 Teachers, caregivers and adult chaperones are free of charge. Reservations must be made at least two weeks in advance by calling Lindenwood at 260-427-6740.

 

Story Time
Nature Storytime

Immerse yourself in a good story and the great outdoors! We will read a nature-themed story followed by a short hike through the preserve. Pre-registration is required and space is limited. Ages 10 and under. Registration deadlines: August 29 and September 26. Please call 427-6000 to register or online at fortwayneparks.org. Min. 5. Max 15.

Code                    Date       Day                     Time

448114-S1            9/3         Sa           11 am-12 pm

448114-S2            10/1       Sa           11 am-12 pm

# Sessions/Fee: 1/Free

Location: Lindenwood Nature Preserve, 600 Lindenwood Ave.

 

Halloween Hike

Kids’ Halloween Hike

Join us for a kid-friendly sunset hike to celebrate the spookiest night of the year (a few days early). Trail-friendly costumes are encouraged, but be sure to wear shoes that are safe and comfortable to hike in. The hike is FREE; however, registration is required for planning purposes. Ages 4 -11. Registration deadline: October 24. Min. 5. Max. 15.

Code                     Date      Day                      Time

448003-S1           10/29      Sa           7:30-8:30 pm

# Sessions/Fee: 1/Free

Location: Lindenwood Nature Preserve, 600 Lindenwood Ave. 


Wild Walkers

2nd and 4th Fridays of each month

Explore some of northeast Indiana’s finest outdoor areas with this nature-oriented group. Wild Walkers is an adult hiking group that meets the second and fourth Fridays of each month for a walk on the wild side. Each hike features a different natural area in the region (parks, wetlands, nature preserves, etc.) and carpooling is available when necessary. The 2022 schedule is posted at www.fortwayneparks.org or may be requested by e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Testimonials

Hikes

Always enjoy Maggie as the hike guide, very knowledgeable, personable, and so enthusiastic about her work.  Cheri

 

Field Trips

This is a great hands-on nature exploration-gives students a chance to see things in their habitat.-Amy F.

What a fun and educational time we had at the Harvest Moon Hike! The naturalist was able to connect with all age levels and make it fun not only for the kids but adults as well.  It was interactive and exciting to learn about the different animals at night, view the world through their senses and actually see some animals as well.  Thank you Maria.  Joelle R. 

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Lindenwood Guided Hikes & Field Trips

May – October 31

Let us plan a nature outing for your class or group. Lindenwood Nature Preserve offers a variety of hands-on environmental education opportunities perfect for class field trips, birthday parties or other group outings. For a complete list of programs/topics, please visit the Lindenwood page at fortwayneparks.org. The cost is $3/participant/hour with a minimum fee of $30 for a 1-hour program . Reservations must be made at least two weeks in advance by contacting Eden at 427-6008 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. 

 

Volunteer Opportunities

Is your business, club, or scout group looking for service hours? Lindenwood Nature Preserve has various volunteer opportunities such as trail maintenance, invasive plant removal, and small-scale construction projects. If your organization is ready to lend a hand contact Eden at 260-427-6008


 
Wild Walkers Pokagon Group Shot
Wild Walkers pose for a group picture at Pokagon State Park.  Photo credit: Steve Hague

Wild Walkers 2022 

Wild Walkers is an adult hiking group that meets the second and fourth Fridays of each month for a walk on the wild side. Each hike features a different natural area in the region (parks, wetlands, nature preserve, etc.) and carpooling is available when necessary. Please call Eden at 427-6008 or e-mail eden.lamb@cityof fortwayne.org if you have questions. 

2022 Wild Walkers Schedule 

 

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 For additional ways to "Plug-In To Nature" check out the following link:

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Upcoming Events

Explore the Trails
4 Oct 2022   6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Botanical Brew
7 Oct 2022   4:00 pm - 10:00 pm
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15 Oct 2022  10:00 am - 5:00 pm

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Fort Wayne Parks & Recreation Department  705 E. State Blvd.   Fort Wayne, IN 46805  (260) 427-6000 • Office hours: Monday-Friday 8 am-5 pm  parkswebmaster@cityoffortwayne.org