Exploring Pet-Friendly Living: Chicagoland’s Top 55+ Communities With Dog Parks

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A happy 55+ woman with her dog in a dog park.

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    What You’ll Gain From Reading This Article: This article provides information about pet-friendly retirement communities in the Chicagoland area, specifically focusing on three options: Lincoln Valley, Everleigh Vernon Hills, and Avidor Evanston. The article provides details about the amenities, features, and pet-friendly aspects of each community.


    Are you looking for a pet-friendly community for your retirement? In many ways, Chicago is a haven for animal lovers. The city has over 30 dog-friendly areas for your canine companion to run off-leash and socialize. During the summer, you’ll hardly find a single patio that doesn’t welcome dogs with open arms and bowls of water. Some restaurants even have dog-friendly menus. You can also spend a day at the beach with your dog or even cruise down the river together. And that’s just in the city.

    Chicagoland is a sprawling area that includes the city itself and its ring of suburbs. You can find plenty of ways to include your dog in your daily life throughout this vast metropolitan area. From dog parks and forest preserves with miles of trails to easy access to veterinary care and specialty pet stores, you can easily find a dog-friendly place for your retirement.

    You can also find active adult communities in Illinois that have dog parks for their human and canine residents to enjoy together. If you want to find a pet-friendly community in the Chicago area, these three options could be the perfect fit for you and your furry best friend.

    Lincoln Valley – North Aurora, IL

    High $200ks – Low $500ks

    Exterior view of a home at Lincoln Valley in North Aurora, Illinois, a pet friendly community.

    Our first pet-friendly community recommendation is Lincoln Valley, a new active adult community located about an hour outside of Chicago. Construction began in 2017, and once completed, the community will have a total of 374 attached and single-family homes. Also, residents will have access to amenities like a community clubhouse, an outdoor pool, and sports courts for games of bocce and pickleball. If you want to move in with your dog, you’ll be able to play in the Lincoln Valley dog park and enjoy its walking trails together.

    While you’ll be able to exercise your dog within the community, Lincoln Valley is also conveniently located near several other spots that will appeal to dog owners. The community is located along the Fox River, offering a scenic spot for long walks. You can also take your dog to Gregory Island Dog Park to socialize and run along the banks of the river.

    Additionally, life at Lincoln Valley offers convenient access to veterinary care. North Aurora is home to The Fox Valley Veterinary Clinic and Randall Orchard Crossing Animal Hospital. You’ll also find big box pet stores (like Pet Supplies Plus and Petco) in North Aurora.

    Everleigh Vernon Hills – Vernon Hills, IL

    $1,800s – $4,900s

    The courtyard greenspace at Everleigh Vernon Hills in Vernon Hills, Illinois, a pet friendly community.

    If you’re looking to downsize in retirement, Everleigh Vernon Hills could be an option. This pet-friendly community consists of 187 rental apartments. Life here has the feel of resort luxury. The community has an outdoor heated pool, and residents enjoy a maintenance-free lifestyle. They can also workout in the community fitness center, gather in the game room, chat at the coffee bar, and dig into some hobbies at the creative arts studio. Most importantly for pet owners, Everleigh Vernon Hills has a green space to run your dog as well as outdoor dog washes.

    When considering life for you and your dog in a 55+ community, be sure to check the pet policies. Everleigh Vernon Hills allows cats and dogs, with a maximum of two pets per apartment. Pets cannot weigh more than 55 pounds.

    Everleigh Vernon Hills is named for its suburban location: Vernon Hills. The suburb is a little over an hour outside of Chicago, making day trips into the city easy. When you’re at home, you can take leashed strolls through the suburb’s parks. Also, if you’re looking for somewhere to let your pup run free, you can head to the neighboring towns of Highland Park and Buffalo Grove. Both of these suburbs have designated dog parks.

    Whether your dog needs a regular checkup or emergency care, living near a vet is important for pet owners. Companion Animal Hospital, VCA Hawthorn Animal Hospital, and Townline Animal Hospital are all located in Vernon Hills. You can shop for your dog at PetSmart or Kriser’s Natural Pet close to home. Additionally, if you’re looking to step out with your dog, Lazy Dog Restaurant & Bar has a dog-friendly patio.

    Avidor Evanston – Evanston, IL

    $2,200s – $5,000s

    The amenities at Avidor Evanston in Evanston, Illinois.

    As our final pet-friendly community recommendation, Avidor Evanston is a new 55+ community situated in Evanston, a northern suburb of Chicago. The 152 new apartments range from 574 to 1,271 square feet, giving you the option to downsize or spread out. The community offers its residents amenities like a sundeck, a sky lounge, a fitness center, and yoga garden. Plus, you’ll have access to a community dog run.

    Avidor Evanston is about 30 minutes from O’Hare Airport, which could be a big plus for people who want to prioritize travel in their retirement. If you and your dog love to travel, you’ll never be far from the start of your next trip.

    When you aren’t traveling and you want to enjoy some fun closer to home, Evanston has plenty to offer dog lovers. Take your pup to the city’s dog beach for a dip in Lake Michigan. After a day of sand and surf, you can look for a restaurant that welcomes pups to its outdoor patio. Evanston is also just a beautiful spot for long, leisurely walks. You can follow the path that winds along the lakeside, or you can take detours on the suburb’s beautiful, tree-lined residential streets.

    Evanston is a dog-friendly suburb, so it naturally offers many options for veterinary care. You can check out practices like Evanston Animal Hospital, Berglund Animal Hospital, or Bramer Animal Hospital to find the right fit for you and your dog. You can also shop at Pet Supplies Plus, or you can stop at Bentley’s Pet Stuff for supplies and a dog wash.

    55places Can Help You (and Your Dog) Find Your Dream Home

    Many active adults want to share their retirement years with a furry friend. Luckily, there are 55+ communities with dog parks across the country, Chicagoland included. Contact 55places today, and we’ll help you find the perfect community in the Chicagoland area!

    Discover what’s next.

    To learn more information or connect with a real estate expert, contact us today.

    Can you spot the $207,744 difference between these identical homes?

    Financing is the difference!

    Get the details in The 62+ Loan Homebuyers Guide.

    55places Mortgage is a joint venture between Mutual of Omaha Mortgage and 55places.com.
    Details here.

    We're here to help! (800) 928-2055

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    I agree that 55places and its affiliates, partner providers or agents may call, text, or email me about my inquiry, which may be made with automated means. I understand that my consent is not a prerequisite for buying a property. I may revoke my consent at any time by contacting optout@55places.com. Message/data rates may apply. I also agree to 55places.com’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

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    About 55places

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