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Bark Patrol Dogs Help Visitors Protect the Sleeping Bear Dunes

Protecting the natural wonder of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore is an important mission.

The Bark Patrol is a volunteer group whose furry ambassadors help educate parkgoers on proper pet etiquette. Keeping pets on a leash and cleaning up their messes is part it, but protecting endangered species is a top priority too.

Volunteers say the piping plover needs to be comfortable to nest in its habitat, and keeping pets out of those areas helps. The volunteer group is looking to put more paws on the ground to help with the coming tourist season.


“We will take as many volunteers as we can get. It’s really important for us to have a high compliance rate for dogs here at the park, for us to continue to be able to use this area as a dog-friendly option. The piping plover is a federally endangered species, and their recovery is of the utmost importance for us,” said Erica Adams, piping plover coordinator for Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.

The Bark Patrol is looking for well-behaved, fully-vaccinated and registered dogs. If you and your pet are interested in volunteering, contact Erica at

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