We love taking our dogs out for an adventure to stretch their legs and to socialise with other puppies in the local dog Park!
But there are some basic rules one should remember to make sure you trip is enjoyable for your dog, for yourself, and for others.
Dog parks are great and we are lucky that our councils around Australia allocate areas for our puppies. But like anywhere there are rules and basic manners one should try to stick to.....
1. Make Sure Your Dog is Wearing a Collar.
This is for a few reasons. The obvious one is to ensure you can restrain your dog.....
But this isn't just to get them in and out of the car.... It's also in case they have a problem with another pooch. You can easily separate them with a good quality collar and lead.
It's also to remind them of manner as well. Sometimes, a moment out in the Dog park is a wonderful opportunity to spend some time on training and re-enforcing basic lessons.
Having a lead and Collar can help with this. Of course, if you are doing some training, be sure to have some Huds and Toke training treats on hand to reward them for their good behaviour.
Another reason for a collar is if your puppy does a Harry Houdini and escapes, or runs off, someone will be able to identify them easily and re-acquaint them with you, the owner, with the littlest of fuss.
I know we would all like to think that our pets won't run off, but you never know..... A loud noise might scare them, another dog might intimidate them, or they could simply be distracted by something and off they go... If you have a Collar at least you, or someone else, will be able to restrain them.
Another reason is so that you can get your puppy in and out of the dog park safely.... Often these dog parks are close to busy roads; and there are lots of things going on with high excitement levels in the air...... Just make sure you can get them into, and out of, the park safely.
2. Pick Up Your Dogs Poop!
Be a responsible Pet Parent and Dog Owner. If everyone cleans up after their own dog, the dog park will be left clean for everyone.
All one needs to do is either plan ahead and take a doggy bag, or take a clean bag from the dispenser which is at most dog parks.... But from experience, often these dispensers are empty so simply bring your own.
It's respectful for your puppies and it's respectful towards your other pet parents whom also frequent the dog park.
This isn't just a manners thing...... It's also a health thing..... Viruses and Bacteria lurk in an animals waste and no one wants their puppy to pick up a bug because someone could be bothered....
3. Only Bring Chase Toys.
Obviously, one of the reasons we take our dogs to the dog park is to give them some exercise!!!
So of course it's ok to bring a ball, or a frisbie, or something like this. in order for you to throw and for them to fetch..... It brings great joy to both the pooch as well as to the owner!
However, be sure to leave other toys at home such as chew toys, or tug-of-war type toys, etc...
The reason is that these tys can stimulate agressive behaviour. Although you may have the intention of only playing with with your own dog, sometimes the sound of the playful growl, and the body language of your dog trying to rip something away from you can invoke responses of other dogs to join in.....
This in turn can spark another reaction from your puppy which ends up in a heated moment.... so avoid any misunderstandings and only bring chase toys to the park!
4. Don't Bring a Dog which is on Heat to the Dog Park!
There are soooo many reasons why you don't want to bring your bitch on heat to the dog park.....
5. Be Up-To-Date With Your Pooches Vaccinations.
This is also very important. You most certainly do no want your puppy to be unprotected when it goes to the Dog park. Because of the nature of Dog Parks, there are dangerous bugs which dogs can pick up. If you are up to date on your vaccinations then they are at least protected from those particular nasties.
6. Don't Bring Dog Food.... Training Treats Are Fine!
The response to either protect food, or to take food, can be somewhat uncontrollable. After all, they are still animals.... and food can trigger fights and increase anxiety amongst other dogs..... So simply avoid taking dog food or long lasting Dog Treats.
Short lasting Dog Treats, or Training Treats, are fine. This is because of two reasons.
Firstly, you are using them as a reward and for training purposes.... SO the idea is that you are trying to develop better manners and are directly feeding this Dog Treat to your puppy. Make sure, however, you do this away from other dogs though.
The second reason is that Dog Training Treats are designed to be small, and consumed quickly so that you can reward an action but then keep on training with the minimum of down time.
Therefore, your pet should be able to consume this Doggy Treat quickly and thus, have nothing to fight over.....
7. Have a No Fight Policy!
If you feel that your dog is starting to get a bit edgy with other pooches in the park, or, on the other hand, another dog is starting to show aggression towards yours, don't be a hero. Just either pack up and go, or take your puppy out of the park and wait until the other dog/s have gone.
No one in the park wants a fight to break out but sometimes owners want to be in the right..... that matters not if it is your dog that gets beat up and you end up at the Vets..... OR, if your dog beats up another dog, you could end up with more trouble than you suspect.
So just simply have a no fight policy and that way you show to others in the park that you are a responsible pet parent as well as actively avoiding a problem which can have the potential to spoil your entire day.
8. Avoid bringing other pets into the Dog Park!
This sounds obvious doesn't it? However, some people will bring pet birds on their shoulders into the parks or even sometimes certain instances of cats!!!
Just because your dog has been trained not to chase other animals, you can't expect that other dogs have the same level of training!
It might look cute, or feel like a wonderful pet family adventure, but you are putting your other pets at great risk....
9. Bring a great attitude!
This goes without saying. Be a happy friendly person whom shows general respect for towards other people and who know, you might meet some really nice people and your pooch ends up have a great play....
Further to this though, is that if your have reputation of bringing a great attitude with you, if something does happen, others will help as well as show understanding.... The one thing all dog owners know is that our wonderful animals can sometimes do unexpected things and if others understand that you are a great Pet Parent as well as an awesome person, simple solutions will always prevail.
Hopefully this has been of some interest? The main aim of this is to ensure your Puppy Dogs have a great outing and you both come back feeling refreshed and relaxed!!!
The team @ Huds and Toke are really grateful for your support and love creating awesome Doggy Training Treats for you to take with you to the Dog Parks.... Be sure to visit out shop to pick some up for your next outing.....
Have a great day and all the best from the team here @ Huds and Toke.
Don't forget to share your adventures with us on our socials.