By Amy Nichols of Dogtopia
With June here and the weather heating up, more and more dog owners will be treating their pups to an afternoon at a neighborhood dog park. There are more than 600 dog parks across the country, which means spending the day at the dog park is becoming increasingly more common. As the founder of Dogtopia, a national chain of upscale dog daycare and spas, I see dogs interacting with each other quite regularly during our daily play groups and at the “indoor” dog park days we host at our facilities during the winter. While the trips to the dog park can be a great way to help with your pooches socialization skills, it can also turn out to be a disaster if you are not prepared for the trip. When it comes to spending time at the dog park, there are plenty of “do’s and don’ts.”
With that in mind, here are a few key tips dog owners should remember before rushing out to the local dog park:
* Make sure your dog is up-to-date on his/her vaccinations before heading out.
* If you've never been to the park before, find out if there is a water source. If there isn't, remember to bring water with you.
* Always clean up after your dog. The dog park’s for everyone.
* Always pay attention while your dog plays and interrupt any rough play.
* It may be a good idea to leave toys and treats of your own at home to avoid any competition for them between the dogs. Besides, the dogs are more than capable of occupying themselves.
* Don’t worry if your dog doesn’t immediately begin to play. Every dog has to reach their own comfort level.
* If your dog makes a new friend, chat with the owner and learn when they normally come to play. You can arrange play dates!
Following these tips will help make everyone’s experience at the dog park an enjoyable one. For more information on Dogtopia and a listing of locations nationwide, as well as how to get your dog involved with one of our numerous play groups, visit www.dogdaycare.com.
About the Author: Amy Nichols, founder and CEO of Dogtopia.
After researching trends and carefully planning the venture to serve dogs and their busy owners, Amy founded the first Dogtopia, a full-service dog day care, spa and boutique, in 2002. The company has experienced overwhelming success and growth. There are currently 20 Dogtopia locations open throughout the country, with a dozen more facilities currently in development.