Now that it’s warmer out, getting outside with your dog is probably one of your top priorities. Off-leash dog parks can be a great place to visit to give your dog some exercise, some social time with other dogs, and get yourself moving too. If you’re planning on visiting an off-leash park in your area, make sure you keep these things in mind.
1. Make sure he’s old enough to play. If you’ve just brought home a puppy, make sure you know if it’s safe to take him to the park and let him play with other dogs. He may be too young to be around other dogs and may be susceptible to conditions he hasn’t been vaccinated for yet. Make sure you get the go ahead from your vet before you visit!
2. Work on good behaviour at the park. The dog park is an exciting place, there’s no question. Lots of other dogs and people can create a distracting environment. If you can, take 10 minutes out of your visit to work on the fundamentals of training like sit, stay, or down. This will help you build trust with your dog, and help to refocus him if there’s a situation you need to exit quickly. Remember to reward good behaviour!
3. Try an alternative to treats. If your dog is food or treat driven, try using different ways to keep his attention at the park. If other dogs smell treats on you, it could trigger your dog to protect you or the food you’re holding.
4. Don’t allow rough play. Always keep your eyes on your dog while you’re at the off-leash dog park and if possible, stay within 20-30 feet of him at all times. No matter how much fun they’re having, it’s important that your dog doesn’t get out of control. If your dog is showing signs of aggression, it’s a good idea to leave the park. On the other hand, if your dog is having a great time, keep him hydrated and stay longer!
5. Keep your leash handy. A leash is the only sure-fire way to control your dog. When it’s time to go or if he’s getting out of hand, once you pop the leash back on him, you’re in control again. You may also have a walk to and from the car where you’ll need to make sure he’s safely on a leash.
Accidents happen. Petsecure can help.
Accidents can happen at the dog park, or anywhere else. Petsecure can help with the cost if something happens and your dog needs to see the vet. Learn what’s covered by Petsecure and get a free quote today.
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