Thursday, February 28, 2013

Dog Park - Staying Fit and Having Fun

Anyone who follows me on Dogbook knows I love going to Dog Park.  It is a lovely place, over seven acres of fields and woodlands that follow a river.  Dogs can run in the fields and swim in the river or just walk along the wonderful paths with their humans for miles and miles. All filled with such great smells!

I love going to Dog Park because there is soooo much to do.  I get to run free and don’t have to worry about Mom or Dad getting lost.  I have to wear my leash when we get out of the car, although it is a hassle, but our dog park is not fenced in so Mom wants to make sure I am away from traffic before I can go off leash.  It seems like a long time but it is not because most of the property is far away from the road where there are cars so when Mom feels safe, she takes my leash off and I am on my own!

 There are lots of different tails so we, usually Mom or Dad, can decide how long we can stay at Dog Park.  I like the really long one that run by the big hill and then to the swimming hole cuz that’s where most of the dogs hang out.  Sure, we meet lots of dogs along the trails but the swimming hole is where the action is.  On the weekend, you can find 20 dogs and their humans hanging around the big field by the swimming hole.  The humans are all drinking their coffees and talking and us dogs, well; we are having lots of fun!  Nobody cares if we dig holes or run around with big sticks.  Some dogs like to jump in the river and splash around.  In the Summer I will go in up to my knees but even though I’m part Lab, I’m not crazy about water.

Sometimes I meet up with old friends but lots of the times I get to play with new dogs.   I love playing tag and chase and there is usually someone who wants to play.

Even when we go on a weekday and the park is quiet, I still get a lot of exercise so when I get home, all I want to do is nap.  Somebody said that a tired dog is a good dog.  I guess I can’t get into too much trouble if I’m sleeping.   Mom says going to Dog Park is good for humans too cuz they need exercise too.

I love Dog Park but it is not for everyone.  Dogs are social beings and like to be around other dogs.  Living with humans is nice but we need to talk with other dogs sometimes. Just like human females need a “Girls Night Out’ and male humans need “A Night Out With the Guys” Dogs need to be with other dogs sometimes.  If you are thinking of taking your dog to a dog park, you might want to check it out alone first.  Some dogs are really shy and would not like being at a dog park. If you see that your dog is not having fun, be a good human and take them home where they feel safe.

Some parks, like in cities, have supervised play.  I had supervised play when I went to day care and it was nice but we don’t have that at Dog Park.  At Dog Park all of the humans need to watch their own dogs to make sure they are playing nice. Mom almost never takes calls on her cell phone when we are at Dog Park.  She says even she deserves an hour or so away from business.

I try to play nice with all the dogs but I know Mom is always watching to make sure.  Once or twice when she thought I was having too much fun, she called me away and made me sit for a minute until I calmed down.  What can I say, some games are quite intense.

A couple more things:  there are hundreds of dogs that visit dog parks every day and you can’t know where some paws have been so make sure you are up to date on all of your shots.  Also, your humans should be prepared to clean up after you.  My Mom carries poop bags in all of her jacket pockets. It gets kind of embarrassing when she tries to get a business card out of a pocket and a bunch of poop bags come out too.   It's about priorities
Your friend,
P.S.  Shameless self promotion ... After a walk in the park I am ready for a snack and we keep my snacks in My Own Cookie Tin.  You can have your very own cookie tin too ....

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