The Cache Creek Nature Preserve is designed to provide a safe haven for wildlife in an increasingly urbanized world, mitigating the effects of associated habitat loss. Even though dogs are not allowed at the Cache Creek Nature Preserve, we also recognize space for our best friends is vital and would like to assist you with finding recreational spaces to enjoy with your pooch.
On behalf of our wildlife residents, thank you for leaving your pet at home.
Reptiles, waterfowl, songbirds, rabbits, deer, and bobcats change their path and patterns to avoid areas where dogs, perceived as predators, are detected. This includes smelling left behind urine or feces after a dog is no longer present.
Wildlife has also been shown to change daily habits such as inverting day and night activity to be less active when dogs are present and increased activity when they are absent.
Wildlife perceives dogs as predators and is more alert when they are present causing stress hormone levels to elevate. This can have long-term impacts such as reduced reproduction, growth, and compromised immune systems.
dogs cause death by transmitting deadly diseases including rabies, giardia, distemper, parvovirus, and toxoplasmosis. Additionally, wildlife can transmit diseases to domestic animals.
Dogs can chase and kill wildlife species such as fish, reptiles, amphibians, rabbits, squirrels, deer, or foxes.
Humans who come in direct contact with dog waste risk contracting hookworms, roundworms, E. coli, or salmonella. These parasites and bacteria also spread through polluted water where a dog has defecated or where feces were carried by stormwater. Dog waste also impacts visitors' enjoyment of a natural area.
The Dog Park at Grasslands Regional Park offers a large space for your furry friend to run off-leash while still within a contained area. The grasses here are not maintained lawns and may grow tall during certain parts of the year!
Dogs are welcome on-leash at Capay Open Space Park where you and your pup can walk the flat trails through an open grassland area. There is also ramp access to the Cache Creek for where they can refresh with a drink of water on those hot days.
Chadwick, D., & Ferguson, A. (in press). Dogs put their noses to work saving wildlife. National Geographic. https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/2021/01/working-dogs-for-conservation
Lenth, B., Knight, R., & Brennan, M. (2008). The Effects of Dogs on Wildlife Communities. Natural Areas Journal, 28(3), 218–227. https://www.nps.gov/goga/learn/management/upload/Lenth-et-al-Effects-of-Dogs-on-Wildlife-Communities.pdf
Sime, C. A. 1999. Domestic Dogs in Wildlife Habitats. Pages 8.1-8.17 in G. Joslin and H. Youmans, coordinators. Effects of recreation on Rocky Mountain wildlife: A Review for Montana. Committee on Effects of Recreation on Wildlife, Montana Chapter of The Wildlife Society. 307pp. https://www.nps.gov/goga/learn/management/upload/-1680-Sime-1999.pdf
The Impacts of Dogs on Wildlife and Water Quality: A Literature Review. Metro Parks and Nature, 2016, https://www.oregonmetro.gov/sites/default/files/2017/09/28/impacts-of-dogs-on-wildlife-water-quality-science-review.pdf.