Etiquette 101: Dog Park Diego
6 tips to ensure your outing truly is a walk in the park
Some great ways to prepare yourself prior to visiting a dog park and/or dog beach are to learn about dog park dos and don’ts, what to look for in regard to healthy play versus unhealthy play, proper dog park etiquette, and ensuring that you have a solid recall on your dog.
1. KEEP MOVING
Dogs don’t like large groups of other dogs coming at them. Avoid lingering near the entrance when new dogs are entering.
2. CLOSE THE GATE
Most parks have two gates with an entry way in between them. Remove your dog’s leash between the first and second gate. Your dog can feel confined if he’s still on leash when the other dogs aren’t. If other dogs are exiting, let them out before you enter the first gate, and make sure one gate is closed at all times.
3. PLAY NICE
If your dog loves to chase, he may find nothing more exciting than racing a dog on the other side of the fence. But if racing and chasing turns into excessive barking or growling, it’s time to redirect his attention. Use vocal recall or a ball— something that creates a positive distraction. Avoid squeaky toys—they run the risk of riling up every dog in the park!
4. SCOOP THE POOP
All cities have a municipal ordinance about picking up after your dog. It’s required and it’s polite so everyone can enjoy the park. Don’t expect the park to have bags available; take one or two with you just in case.
5. KEEP PUP HYDRATED
Remember, dogs don’t sweat and they’ll keep playing long after they’re physically exhausted or overheated. Bring your own water if you’re unsure there’s a working fountain. If another dog is lingering at the water bowl, check with his owner before offering a drink.
6. SIT IT OUT
Not all dogs are social butterflies. If your dog spends his time cowering under the bench or glued to your side, try to encourage him to come out, but remember, a trip to the park is supposed to be a positive experience. If there are too many dogs and he feels intimidated or anxious, go back another time when the park is less crowded.