5 thoughts on “Are dog parks a recipe for disaster?

  1. I will have to say yes – I never had to treat my dog for fleas until a visit to the dog park – at least now I know he is allergic to flea spit!! I avoid dog parks and rest areas dog walking trails because they are great places to pick up doggie illnesses.


  2. They can be. We go to a private dog park that is split in 2 sides, small dog and large dog. The small dog side has a pond and sometimes lab owners want to let their dog get in the pond. There are wading pools on both sides, but this is a regular pond. Usually they will ask if it’s ok if their lab comes in and if all the small dog owners agree, they come in and it’s usually ok. Last time we were there, we were the only small dog. 3 men with 3 pits or pit mixes came into the big dog side. One of the younger pits wasn’t fixed and he was trying to mount everything. So they just barged into the small dog side without a fare thee well or excuse me or mother may I. We then had to deal with the pit trying to mount Bonnie (who is intact but wasn’t in heat). She wanted nothing to do with that dog. The dogs walked around, pooped, but the owners did not pick up. And there are nice pick up bags provided within reach in several places. I also noticed the donation box had been ripped from the shelter…further signs of foul play. This is a very nice park and I hate to see it go downhill. We do have some county parks but they are NASTY. No trees, no benches. Just fenced in dirt. If you are going to use a dog part….walk your dog at least 30 minutes before you go to wear off some energy. Stay on the side for your size dog. And for heavens sake, pick up after your dogs! Thats how worms and diseases are spread. My friend that is a Vet never takes their dogs to any dog park for that reason. We don’t take our older dog either. His health is too fragile. And the flea thing. The only flea Bonnie has ever had came home from this last visit to the dog park.

  3. Yes, the dog whisperer says you should walk your dogs before bringing them to the dog park as there's a lot of non-calm, non-submissive behaviour happening there.

    Luckily, our park has never been swarmed by pits although at my last one, where pitbulls were actually banned, a non-neutered male with very noticeable equipment showed up one day. I couldn't take my eyes off the situation but he was really rather sweet.

  4. These are very timely comments. There are about to be 4 dog parks opening in my City. I've been pondering what could go wrong. None of this sounds good to me. Thank you for posing the question and for all those who gave first hand observations. I've already got one wing with our name at the vet.

  5. In my opinion, the answer is NO. I take my Scottie & Westie to the dog park everyday. Our park is membership based only. All dogs are required to have rabies, distemper, parvo, and something else that currently slips my mind.

    Our park is split into two sections although we do have a couple of "honorary" large dogs that only prefer the small dog area. I take my dogs the same time every day, and we see essentially the same dogs. Everyone knows one another and problems are few and far between.

    My Scottie, is to good to deal with the other dogs but she loves to go and visit with the people. Her favorite hangouts are either on top of the picnic table or under one of the benches.

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