forgHey there. Wondercide writer Catherine here. Lately, I’ve been curious about how people feel about dog parks.
As you know, my Bella is 6 lbs. (that’s her in the picture – isn’t she cute?) and I really can’t just take her to a dog park because along with it comes one too many potential dangers.
Dog park dangers? What dangers?
Well… it would be a mistake to think that all dogs at the park are well-trained, well-mannered, and fond of every other dog. It would also be a mistake to assume that all dogs are healthy.
And by healthy I mean parasite-free. Parasites can include fleas, ticks, and different types of worms such as hookworms or tapeworms, as well as giardia.
I’ve been reading horror stories of people who come home from a romp in the park with Fido, only to find out that he is now infested with fleas because another dog had an issue (or the park itself was infested) and they forgot to apply Fido’s flea repellent.
The two main reasons I don’t bring Bella to the dog park is because one - many larger dogs view her as prey – this is never a happy situation. She is literally now terrified of a large happy dog, excited to be her new friend, due to negative past experiences with not-so-friendly canines. And two, I don’t want her picking up fleas or other nasty parasites from the less cared for dogs there.
That’s just me (and Bella). And just because I have a tiny little dog (and I’ve had my share of bad experiences) doesn’t mean you can’t or shouldn’t take your dog to the park. In fact, if you do take your dog to the park and have had great luck, I encourage you to continue to do so. There’s nothing better than the outdoors, sunshine, and exercise!
And if you do go to the park with your furry best friend you should keep a few things in mind and take the following precautionary measures:
First, don’t forget to protect your dog from the obvious parasites with flea repellent. Sounds simple, but an infestation can happen anywhere at any time. Second, look out for dogs that may not be as friendly as your dog. And third, don’t get distracted by being on your phone or chatting up other dog park patrons – the last thing you need is your dog knocking over your neighbor’s kid and then you having to pay for their medical bills.
Do you bring your dog(s) to the park? Share with us in the comments!