Dog park etiquette should be discussed more often amongst those of you who like to bring your furry friends for a fun outdoor run. Here are some suggestions to help make your adventure more enjoyable for everyone!
The first rule of thumb,
#1 BE HONEST ABOUT YOUR DOG
If your dog has displayed aggression, or has a propensity to take a chomp out of the occasional dog, it’s best to at the very least muzzle him for his safety and the safety of others. You must also decide if the dog park is the most enjoyable environment for him. Some dogs prefer to be left alone, or simply amongst their humans.
#2 BE PREPARED
Although many park spaces may supply water, poop bags, and even bowls, it’s always a good idea to pack your own. You can find collapsible dog bowls at almost any pet retail store, and a ton of biodegradable poop bags too! Your dog might like it if you can bring a nutritional treat to help give them an energy boost too.
#3 BE ATTENTIVE
All too often I see people at the dog park sipping their coffee and getting their own social time in. Meanwhile their dog is off stealing sticks from other dogs, humping, playing too hard, or generally being a bully! Now, I’m not suggesting you keep your dog under your thumb, but definitely keep a vigilant eye and be responsible for your dogs actions.
If your dog decides to leave a big poop bomb outside, pick it up! It’s easy, it doesn’t take a long time, and it will help ensure that you’re setting a good example for other dog owners around you. Afterall, if you’re not picking up after your dog, chances are other won’t either!
#5 FOLLOW THE POSTED RULES
Each dog park or trail will have differing rules depending on the municipality and various types of park. Some will allow off-leash dog play during regulated hours, some will allow off-leash play all of the time. However, there are many trails and parks that do not allow any off-leash play and are LEASH ONLY parks, or trails. Remember, just because you love your dog doesn’t mean that others will too! A little jumpy dog is still a jumpy dog, and to be honest it’s not always a great time when your pants are muddied by a random little dog.
#6 HAVE FUN!
Plain and simple, enjoy your time with your dog. Find an activity that you both love whether it’s playing fetch, running side by side, training, or agility. Enjoy the chance to slow life down and enjoy the little things.
Have fun out there!