Here’s our list of 20 Dog Park Etiquette Tips!
1. Leash your dog when walking to and from the dog park.
2. Pick up your dog’s poop (For extra credit, pick up somebody else’s poop too).
3. Don’t bring your dog that’s in heat to the dog park.
4. Don’t bring your intact male dog to the dog park (in fact, get him fixed. He’ll live longer, behave better, and hey, no unwanted babies).
5. Pay attention to your dog. You’re not there to yak at your friends.
6. If you bring kids, watch them.
7. Don’t bring little puppies to the dog park (especially really furry puppies, especially around greyhounds which may confuse them for those rabbits they were always chasing (Bridget saw this happen. The puppy survived, but it was scary).
8. Don’t bring your dog to the dog park with the express intention of training it. A little training is fine. Start by training at home without distraction. Then you can train a little at the dog park with distraction, but mostly your dog is there to have fun and get their ya-ya’s out! (We can’t stand seeing the faces of those dogs that want to play.).
9. Don’t yell “Bad Dog”. Pretty much don’t be a jerk to your dog. This also goes for your kids at the grocery store.
10. Don’t take your dog to an unfenced dog park if your dog doesn’t have a rock-solid, bomb proof recall.
11. Be “Dog Park Cordial”–> Assume that the offender does not know the rules (e.g. not picking up poop, say, “Hey, do you need a bag? I’ve got one right here.”)
12. Be sure you know if your dog is about to get into a fight:
A. Fur is raised on back.
B. They don’t turn and look at you when you call their name.
C. Tail is wagging in an unfriendly way, or is sticking out straight.
13. To break up a fight, spray them with a citronella spray. Don’t yell. Don’t jump in the middle.
14. Don’t ask about scars, missing limbs, etc. Pretty much don’t ask anything you wouldn’t ask about someone’s kids.
15. Don’t tell someone that their dog has a face that “only a mother could love”. (Bridget and Olive heard that once. They both thought about biting that guy).
16. Don’t let the humping get out of hand.
17. Bring water and share it with the other dogs.
18. Don’t dress your dog up and then take them to the park. Dogs don’t get fashion, and fashions get dirty.
19. Make sure you have flea protection for your pet.
20. Have a really fun time!