Dog Friendly Summer Events in Vancouver

Growing up, I remember my mom giving me extra chores if I was to utter the phrase, “I’m bored…” and learned quickly to occupy myself with social events in order to avoid the responsibilities around the house! I wasn’t much of a bookworm, so finding out what was going on in the neighbourhood or with my circle of friends was crucial to avoid the dusting and the vacuuming, the tub scrubbing and the kitchen prep duties. Now as an adult, I can’t wait to finish the household chores so I can do the same! As my Uncle Darrell joked as he landed in Vancouver from his hometown of Charlotte, NC, “If you’re bored in this city, there’s somethin’ wrong with you!” And he’s right, we have endless opportunities to keep us entertained.

So which of these awesome things to do are pet-friendly? It’s not like we’re going to leave our favorite four legged friend at home in the overheated house or condo while we explore what Vancouver has to offer! Here’s a list of some dog friendly events coming up right in our backyard.

Tuesday July 23rd
Free Outdoor Movies at Stanley Park – Throughout the summer FreshAirCinema (The Outdoor Movie Company) will be partnering with various organizations across BC to offer FREE outdoor movie nights on massive 3 story inflatable movie screens! Today’s movie is The Breakfast Club.

Friday July 26th
Enchanted Evenings Concert Series – Enchant your evenings with the critically acclaimed concert series at Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden every Friday night of July and August, 2013. Celebrate the Enchanted Evening’s 20th anniversary season with a range of musical performances including traditional Peking Opera, upcoming Jazz sensations, soulful Blues, and Afro Cuban rhythms! Tonight’s musical performance: Diane Lines Trio – American classics through the ages. Click here for ticket information.

Saturday July 27th
Celebration of Light Fireworks Celebration: (United Kingdom) – The most talked about event of the summer, the Celebration of Light is back for another year! The Vancouver summer favourite is back for its 22nd anniversary. For three nights the skies over English Bay light up in a musical pyrotechnic extravaganza.

Caribbean Days Festival – This is a weekend of tropical rhythm, cuisine, carnival and culture as only the Caribbean can offer. Over the years, the Festival has grown into the largest Caribbean event on the local calendar, Drawing tens of thousands of attendees, it is among the very largest cultural events in BC, Canada.
Sunday July 28th
Food Cart Fest – Each week over 20 food carts will be complemented by community markets, live music, DJs, craft food vendors, and kids’ activities. Food Cart Fest takes place every Sunday from 12pm-6pm at 215 West 1st Avenue (between the Cambie Street Bridge and the Olympic Village). The site is next to the Seawall and a short walk from the Canada Line’s Olympic Village Station, the Aquabus’ Spyglass Place Dock, and major bus routes along Broadway, Cambie, Main, West 2nd Avenue.
Have fun in the sun and don’t forget to check out our other blogs regarding sun safety and how to spot when your dog is showing signs of sun stroke.

Proper Dog Waste Disposal

As a dog owner, I should always pick up my dog’s business when he decides to relieve himself on a walk or anywhere in public for that matter. I know this and I do this – as a matter of fact, I don’t think I could ever leave the poop. Well, alright, there have been a few times that I forget a bag and leave the poop for a moment to run home, grab a bag, and return to pick up my dog’s pile.

It always amazes me when I see dog poop that is not picked up, or if I see someone walking their dog who then walks away from the dog poop after the dog clearly just went on someone else’s lawn, on the park grounds or on the public side walk! I want to ask them, did you forget a bag? Do you think you are above picking up your dog’s poo? And then give them a few extra bags or call the city and report them. Unfortunately, I usually just give a disapproving expression and a little glare, my passive aggressive way to deal with someone else’s rude and inconsiderate (not to mention illegal) behaviour.

There was a great post by Vancouver Sun on May 19, 2012:

“First off, nobody knows precisely how many dogs populate the high-density urban landscape [of Vancouver]. However, if estimates of 145,000 dogs are correct, then applying University of B.C. scholar Stanley Coren’s approximation (published in a recent Psychology Today article) of an average production of about 340 grams of fecal matter per dog per day, simple arithmetic indicates man’s best friend must deposit about 50 tonnes of excrement on the city every 24 hours. Over a year that totals about 18,000 tonnes — more than 1.5 times the weight of BC Ferries’ biggest ship.”…Read more.

Now that’s a lot of dog poop! There are many options of what to do with your dog’s doo-doo besides leaving it on the path, school grounds, side walk, street, beach or park where other adults and children may see it, step in it, smell it, or otherwise frown upon it. It does not just disappear with the rain folks!

First of all, always have bags ready. Even better, have biodegradable doggie bags. Tie them to your leash or buy one of those leash doggie bag dispensers.

If you’re picking up your dog’s waste in the backyard, how about flushing it down the toilet? Can I do that? Yes, you can! Flushing down the toilet eliminates your dog poop into the city’s sewage system and is completely legal. However, you do not want to flush the bag as this will most certainly cause plumbing problems. Using a shovel or bucket would do the trick.

What if I live in an apartment or condo? Call a collection service! Search the web for dog waste collection and you will see there are several companies that offer this service.

Build a dog waste compost! Dog waste will decompose and relatively odour free if you build a composter in your garden or backyard. Be careful not to use this compost on a vegetable garden or to store it too close to a stream or river.

Throw it out. Even though pet waste is prohibited for garbage in the City of Vancouver, you are allowed to have it in small amounts if double bagged and placed in the garbage can for regular collection. Technically, this is not considered a good disposal choice as the landfills do better without dog waste, which actually produces methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, and is also hazardous to the staff there.

As a side note, did you know that cat feces is NOT flushable? For all our cat owners out there – even cat litter marked “flushable” does not mean you can flush the feces itself, which will clog the plumbing and city sewer.

Getting back to dogs… If all these options aren’t enough to encourage you to pick up your dog’s business, maybe the fines will! Vancouver’s animal control bylaw allows the city to levy a fine between $250 and $10,000 if a dog owner fails to pick up after their pet. That’s enough incentive for me… well that and it’s plain common courtesy.Image