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National Public Lands

Visiting National Public Lands are common among vacation packages, especially for those who are doing group travel. But while you're camping or exploring with family and friends, it's important to keep track of your pet—if he is even allowed on the land. Not all National Public Lands allow it.

The National Public Lands listed below permit pets on a leash. Keep in mind that animals may be prohibited from entering public buildings and even some areas outdoors, particularly those that are ecologically sensitive. Where swimming is permitted, there are usually no lifeguards on duty; people and pets swim at their own risk. Specific pet policies vary from park to park and are subject to change. Always check in advance regarding any applicable regulations and to confirm that pets are still permitted where you are going.

Be aware of dangers to your pet in natural areas, including snakes, ticks and fast-moving currents in rivers and streams. An unleashed dog may chase after a wild animal and become separated from its owner, increasing the risk of loss or injury. Never leave your pet unattended. Keep him leashed or crated at all times. Follow park guidelines faithfully, and monitor your pet's behavior; the National Park Service may confiscate pets that harm wildlife or other visitors. To prevent an unexpected situation, it is a good idea to read the website for the National Public Land you'll be visiting. You may want to call for further confirmation. For additional information about outdoor vacations, see the article Taking Your Pet to the Great Outdoors.

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