Dog park 101 what we all need to remember!

Spirit of the Okami

Dog Park’s 101 – Do’s and Don’ts

Yes, it is true! We have places that our furry family member can go off leash and play!  However, there are some tips and rules that should be followed at all times!  There is a reason that there are rules, and not paying attention to them can cause your dog, or yourself, potential harm. This is meant as a resourceful guide to protect you and your dog.

1:  Do not let your dog drink out of water bowls at a dog park!  There are sicknesses that can be spread through those bowls and you do not know when or how they were cleaned.

2:  Kennel cough:  It has been on the rise and this sickness can stay on a surface easily up to 6 months, and ANY surface can carry it (yes, especially a parks dog bowls).  Have your dog vaccinated every six months in order to stay safe.

3:  “My small dog loves big dogs” is a common statement among dog owners. A good number of big dogs may love small dogs, but quite a few may easily hate your little dog too.  Dog parks usually have large dog/small dog areas for a reason, and it’s just not out of preference!  Protect your animal and use the proper park for your sized pooch.

4:  While it’s great to chat with dog owners at a park, DO NOT take your eyes off your dog! While things may be going fine, just one wrong move can set off dog fights.  You’re there primarily for your dog!  People come second!

5: Smokers, please properly dispose of cigarettes. If you toss it anywhere, dogs WILL eat them, and potentially get sick.

6: Clean up after your dog. You need to know where it left its “present” in order to be a good, responsible dog owner! No one want’s a messy shoe (or paw).

7:  If it’s your first time at the park, do not rush your dog into it. He/she may be scared, whether you notice the signs or not. Be patient, and pay attention to your dog’s feelings. It can save stress down the road!

8: If you see a new dog trying to come in, remove your dog from the entry way as this can help the new owner and his/her dog enter without a hassle. It will take away any chance of a fight breaking out. Dog’s need their personal space.

9:  If your dog is hackling (hair standing up on back) do not take your dog into the park right away. This is a KEY sign that your dog is not feeling comfortable and is about to snap.  Give your dog a time out to relax him or her before entering the park.

10:  If your dog is starting to push other dogs around, your dog may need a time out, or it’s time to leave the park all together.  If your dog starts a dog fight, another dog could be hurt, which means you will be paying the vet bills (and no one want’s that!).  If a human gets bitten, your dog can get in serious trouble, and in extreme cases, be euthanized. No one want’s that to happen, so pay attention to your dog’s temperament, as well as the dog’s surrounding him/her.

Follow the rules at the dog park. They’re for your safety, and your dogs!

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