Five Tips for a Great Day at the Dog Park

It’s dog park season!

If you’re planning on stopping by the dog park this summer, here are some tips to help make your trip a ”walk in the park.”

1. Make sure your pup is healthy and up to date on vaccinations.
This is really important. Make sure your dog has all the necessary vaccinations and can be around other dogs. Unvaccinated dogs can be susceptible to contagious diseases, like kennel cough, parvo or even rabies. If your dog is sick, let him heal and build up his immune system before you bring him around other animals.

2. Socialize your dog in a safe space.
Do you know your dog’s personality? Set up one-on-one playdates with other dogs, or take your pup on a walk through populated areas to see how he reacts. Some pet stores will even host “puppy play parties” for fully vaccinated puppies to help them socialize early on. Learning how your dog reacts to other dogs and people will help you determine if your dog would do well at a dog park.

3. Find the right park for your dog.
Depending on the responsiveness of your dog, you may want to consider what the right dog park would look like. If your dog doesn’t always come when called, you may want to consider a fenced or indoor dog park that doesn’t allow for easy escape.

4. Pay attention!
It’s tempting to let your dog run and to give yourself a brain break when you’re at the dog park. However, keeping an eye on your dog is important for his safety. He may need to be removed from an uncomfortable situation with another dog or may have been hurt and needs to go to the vet. 5. Talk to your vet.

Your vet is your best partner in making sure your dog is properly socialized and ready to play. You can discuss with him or her some ways to make sure your dog can enjoy the dog park.
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