Taking your dog to a dog park can be stressful, especially if you’ve never done it before. You might wonder about dog park safety, and you’re not alone. Plenty of pet owners worry about taking their dogs to a dog park.
Keep reading to learn about dog park safety.
Dog Park Safety Precautions
If you’re wondering, “are dog parks safe,” the answer is a little more complex than a simple yes or no. So many factors come into play when considering the safety of a given area. Generally, the safety of a dog park depends heavily on you and the other dog owners in the area.
To have the safest possible visit to the dog park, follow these steps.
- Learn the Park’s Rules: Most dog parks will have a list of rules posted at their entrance or on the park’s website. Familiarize yourself with what’s expected of you and your pet during your visit.
- Leave Toys at Home: You don’t want your dog to feel like he or she is on guard when visiting a new place, so try to avoid showing your pet anything he or she will be inclined to protect (or fight for). You can bring treats to give your pet as a reward for good behavior but offer them sparingly.
- Pay Attention: Your dog is your responsibility when you visit the dog park, so be sure to keep a close eye on his or her behavior. Watch your surroundings and occasionally check in on your dog’s body language. If he or she is getting stressed or irritable, it’s probably time to go home.
- Bring Supplies: Bring necessary supplies with you, including waste bags so that you can clean up after your pet. Have a water bottle and collapsable bowl with you as well, in case your dog gets thirsty after running around.
For added safety, you might choose to bring an airhorn or brightly colored water gun with you. If another dog begins to fight with your dog, a loud noise or stream of water will likely break up the incident. DON’T get in the middle of a dog fight.