By: Diana McIntyre


Tags: Calgary off leash parks, dog parks, dog love, Calgary parks, Outdoor activities



Sue Higgins Park formerly known as Southland Dog Park is Calgary’s largest off-leash recreational area encompassing 62-hectares of green space in the South East Calgary. The park was rebuilt after the floods of 2013 that saw most of the parkland under water. The park was renamed in 2014 after the death of Sue Higgins a long time Calgary Alderman who was known as the ‘Alderbroad’.  Higgins represented S.E. Calgary on Counsel for 21 years and was know for her feisty character and colorful language. Sue Higgins always said it like it was & fought for what she believed to be right. Sue Higgins Park was designed to keep both Dogs and Cyclist safe with Bike lanes fenced from the open space of the off-leash area protecting bike riders from dogs running in their path & simultaneously protecting dogs from being run over by cyclists. 

The park is situated along the banks of the Bow River just off Southand Drive & Deerfoot Trail.  A great amenity Sue Higgins Park offers is the amazing access to the Bow River. Where the river meets the park, pets can take a quick dip and cool off on a hot day or happily retrieve sticks by the river’s edge. For Dog owners who aren’t to keen on a wet animal hopping into the car afterwards, there is a fence and gate system in place to allow only those who want to access the river to do so and those who want to stay dry to stay away from the river.

Dogs are required to be on leash when crossing through the access gates that allow dog owners to cross bike paths to access different areas of the park. It is a wonderland for you and your 4-legged friends to roam around without the fear of your companion being in danger. The park is equipped with double gates before and after pathways to ensure pets don’t get away from their owners when it is time to hook up.

The land the park was built upon was once used as ranch land by European settlers, then in 1992 a citizens group was formed to oppose the building of a golf course and promote the establishment of a park to help rehabilitate the area back to its natural state. The park was officially established in 1994 and has since become a favourite among all Calgarians who enjoy taking their fur friends out to the park.

If you are looking for a quick walk to release some energy, or a long walk in the afternoon sun, Sue Higgins Park is one of the best places to be in Calgary.