Dog Park Etiquette – The Do’s and Don’ts

Dog parks have become a normal activity for many pet owners – the fenced green space, the ability to run freely, and of course, socialization with other dogs – and for us, other loving dog owners. You could say it’s really a community of its own! But of course, like any gathering, we have to be mindful of the proper etiquette at the dog park. Here are some pointers to help you and your furry friend make the most of your time at the park!

The List

Of course, there are some dogs who would not fare well in the environment encouraged at the dog park, it’s definitely not the place to try and correct certain behavioural issues that your furry friend may have. It’s always a good idea to take a trip to the park before you plan on spending a longer amount of time there to gauge the atmosphere and your dog’s reaction to it. The main objective of the parks is to create a fun and safe place for your animal to socialize.

  • It’s important to make sure that they are reasonably confident and comfortable around other dogs and humans to avoid any incidents.
  • Manners are a basic must in the park. Your dog should not body-slam, mouth, jump on kids, etc. You get the gist!
  • Your dog should understand and obey certain cues – “come”, “sit” and “stay” are all important to ensure that you can keep yourself in control should any situations arise.
  • Ensuring that your animal is up to date on their vaccinations and dewormed is important to ensure THEIR safety. In close contact with other animals, it can be very easy for your pet to contract a disease such as kennel cough or parasites.
  • Just like on walks, make sure you are fully stocked with the necessary equipment to clean up after your pup. No one likes trying to dodge landmines!
  • You want to make sure that you’re fully aware of the surroundings around you, and constantly monitoring your furry friend. That’s not to say that they aren’t trusted, but you never know how other dogs will behave!

Well, that’s about all for now. In closing, dog parks really are a great resource for owners and dogs alike to meet others in the area. Socializing your pup while they get some playtime in will surely show positively! And of course, the nap when they get settled back at home, well that isn’t so bad either!


Written by Morinville Veterinary Clinic