What are the rules for taking your dog to the dog park?
When taking your dog to a dog park, you must first ensure they are ready for it. This includes having your dog socialized to other dogs and to other people. There are many strange dogs and strange people at dog parks. It’s a high energy, completely new and changing environment.
If your dog has mainly lived at home and spent time only with you and your family, he will likely be traumatized by a visit to the dog park. So before you even set a paw in the dog park, socialize your dog in a quieter setting.
Once you believe your dog is ready, try going on a day when there aren’t any people or dogs there, just as a trial run. Once you are in the dog park, there are rules. E
ach dog park is unique, but there are some general rules of etiquette.
Always clean up after your dog
Dogs are dogs. They answer nature’s call whenever the phone rings. If your dog poops in the dog park, do everyone, including yourself, a favor and pick it up.
No one wants to smell or step in the gift your dog has laid on the ground. Most dog parks provide poop bags and trash cans for disposal.
Share the toys that are at the dog park
Many dog parks have an array of toys that were brought there by users or forgotten there. This usually includes many tennis balls, sometimes sticks, and if you’re lucky a frisbee. Just like in kindergarten, sharing is caring.
Do not let your dog hog all of the toys. The toys are for everyone to share and enjoy. If your dog is a toy hoarder, you may need to intervene and spread the toys around again.
If your dog is disruptive, leave
If your dog gets into scuffles with other dogs, you may need to take your dog home. Dog parks are places where many dogs come together to play. If one or more dogs is being overly aggressive, it ruins the fun for everyone.
Little spats are normal and usually everyone settles quickly, but if you can see your dog is getting aggressive and starting more involved fights with other dogs, then it’s best to just leave and bring your dog back on a day when there are fewer dogs.