I’m so excited that my community Camden Copper Square added a dog park for our residents and their furbabies. Our park has been open for a few months and it is a great amenity to have while living at an apartment community. I love my two furbabies Sophie & Dug, on my off days I love taking them to different dog parks. When I first started going to the dog park I assumed I knew the rules because they are displayed at most parks. After visiting multiple parks I have come to find out there are so many unwritten rules at the dog park. Here are my tips on how to enjoy the dog park:
-Always be cautious when entering or exiting the park. Most dogs will run up and greet the new dog coming in or try to sprint out when you leave.
-Bring waste bags to pick up after your pet. Most dog parks provide them, however I assumed this one time and there were no bags and I was that bad owner who left my pet waste for someone else to clean.
-Bring a water bowl. Many parks have an area for water but they do not always appear to be sanitary after so many pets have used them. I like to take a small bowl and a bottle of water because my dogs are usually thirsty after playing.
-Don’t bring too many toys. I do not recommend taking toys to the park, it can cause some dogs to be aggressive. I have taken a few balls which end up being left because so many dogs chase after them and they are usually dirty afterwards.
-Wear comfortable clothes. Dog parks usually have limited sitting areas and you will most likely interact with other dogs as well as your own. Being in comfortable clothing will make your experience so much better.
-Wear sunscreen or bring an umbrella if you want shade as most parks are open with few areas of shade.
-Remove your dog from the dog park at the first sign of aggression. My dogs are very friendly but I have seen a few dogs come into the park and they snap at other dogs. Many owners take their dog from the park but some owners choose to stay. The owners that choose to stay usually end up leaving soon after because their dogs aggression escalates.
-Learn how dogs play. I was not familiar with dog behavior until I got Sophie. When I first took her to the park I thought she was fighting with other dogs. After a few YouTube videos of how dogs play I became familiar with good and bad behavior which helps me feel confident taking her and my other dog to the park. If you are a new pet owner I recommend watching some of these videos so you can learn what to expect.
-Make sure your dog is vaccinated properly. There are certain vaccinations that your vet will recommend if you plan on taking your dog to the dog park, I highly advise following their guidelines for your pet’s safety and all the other dogs at the park.
-Have fun! Most dogs enjoy interacting with each other and your pet will need a nice nap after all their play time at the park.
Many Camden communities offer dog parks for their residents so you should check them out! If you do not have a dog park at your community I recommend checking out Yelp to find the parks closest to your home. Yelp will show you reviews of the dog park which has really helped me when choosing which dog park I wanted to check out.