Dogs in Whistler: Leashing, Licenses and Bylaws

(from the RMOW Website)

Pet-friendly Whistler

Whistler is a pet-friendly community and asks dog owners to follow rules for responsible pet ownership. Did you know that by licensing your dog you assist us in making decisions on where dog parks are most needed?

Whistler’s Animal Responsibility Bylaw sets out the rules for responsible pet ownership:

  1. Leash your dog – Dogs must be leashed, except when in an off-leash park.
  2. Licence your dog - Dogs in Whistler must possess and wear a valid dog licence.
  3. Pick up after your dog and put the waste in a garbage can.
  4. Don’t allow your dog to become a nuisance to other people.
  5. Don't allow your pet to be tethered and unattended on public property.

Leash Regulations

Dogs must be leashed in Whistler, except in designated off-leash parks.

Whistler is bear country and off-leash dogs can create risky encounters with wildlife. Leashing your dog will protect you, your dog, other people and pets, and Whistler's wildlife.

Dogs are not permitted on public beaches for public health reasons, and are not permitted in playgrounds and water parks for safety reasons.

Any dog roaming at large in the municipality may be seized and impounded at the owner's expense.

Designated Off-Leash Areas

Whistler has four parks with designated off-leash areas:

  1. Alpha Lake— Alpha Lake includes a gravel off-leash dog area known as "Arfa Park" and a designated dog dock.
  2. Bayly Park
  3. Rainbow Park—Barking bay at the south end of the Rainbow Park is a small grass lawn off-leash dog areas with access to the swimming dock. Dog owners are asked to keep their dog leashed as you travel through Rainbow Park to Barking Bay.
  4. Lost Lake Park—Dogs are welcome at "Canine Cove" 400 metres to the north of Lost Lake beach. They are not permitted on Lost Lake beach.

Off-leash dogs must be in the owner’s control and remain in off-leash areas. Owners must also have a leash visible, and leash dogs when entering and exiting off-leash areas. Ensuring your dog is well trained and will return immediately when called will help avoid potentially risky encounters with bears.

Whistler has three mixed use off-leash areas (seasonal conditions may apply): 

1. Spruce Grove: Dogs off-leash are permitted inside the field areas when the fields are not in use.

2. Meadow Park ball fields: Dogs off-leash are permitted inside the field areas when the fields are not in use.

3. Winter Only: The Valley Trail is groomed for multi-use (off leash dogs permitted) activities as snow amounts allow in the following sections:

  • Rainbow Park to Meadow Park Sports Centre
  • From Fitzsimmons Trail to PassivHaus
  • Riverside Campground dyke at Mons Road along Green Lake at Nicklaus North to Alpine Way

Dog Licences

Dogs in Whistler must possess and wear a valid dog licence.

Licences are available at the Municipal Hall or Whistler Animals Galore(link is external) (WAG). WAG receives 50 per cent of proceeds for licences purchased at the animal shelter.

Licence fees:

  • Neutered or spayed - $25
  • Not neutered or spayed - $50
  • Replacement tag- $10

Licences must be renewed annually, starting on January 1. Renewals can be done in person or online through the RMOW’s online dog licence renewal service(link is external).

To renew online, users need the account number and access code as listed on the renewal notices. For assistance, contact Financial Services.

Visitors must ensure their dogs are wearing a valid licence from the community where they permanently reside.

Benefits of a dog licence

Being a responsible pet owner has its perks – not just for your dog, but for other dogs in Whistler, too!

  1. Licences help the RMOW contact dog owners if a pet is lost or during an emergency
  2. If we pick up your missing dog, it gets a free ride home once per calendar year.
  3. Lost and injured animals get cared for and pets get adopted with funding from your dog licence fee.
  4. Dog facilities and services like off-leash dog parks are assessed using dog licensing statistics.
  5. We educate the public and enforce pet rules with funding from your dog license fee.

Lost Dogs

Whistler's Bylaw Services staff and Whistler Animals Galore(link is external) (WAG), Whistler's animal shelter, work together to help return lost pets to their owners.

Learn how to to report a lost or found dog. If your dog has been picked up by a bylaw officer and brought to the animal shelter there is a fee to retrieve it.

Picking Up After Dogs

Please pick up after dogs and dispose of waste appropriately. Failure to do so could result in a fine of $100.

Compostable dog waste bags are provided at many parks and trail junctures. Bag it, and bin it.

Pick Up Protocol (PUP)

Dog owners in Whistler can help turn their pet’s waste into high-quality soil, thanks to a pilot program in two of Whistler's off-leash parks: Bayly Park and Alpha Lake Park.

Pick Up Protocol (PUP) program provides special compostable dog waste bags, which dog owners can use to pick up their pet’s waste before disposing of them in a marked red PUP bin. The waste collected will be added to Whistler’s composting stream, rather than being shipped as garbage to the landfill. More



Bylaw Services
604-935-8280 sends e-mail)

Whistler Animals Galore (WAG)