SOME BASIC PARK GUIDELINES
First time users should visit at non-peak times.
Peak times are Monday - Friday, late afternoon until dark. Saturdays and Sundays are busy at sporadic times throughout the day, but 10am and 2pm are busiest. Dogs that regularly play together tend to form packs and can make a new dog uncomfortable. The first visit can be a little stressful for both you and your dog. Ease the stress that first time by going when the park isn't so busy. You may also wish to use the small dog area, which has its own separate entrance.
Observe the posted park rules
Park users must comply with those rules for the safety of everyone and every dog!
Let your dog off leash as soon as you arrive
Leashed dogs may feel threatened and growl or bark when off-leash dogs greet them. It’s recommended to take the leash off before entering through the second set of gates so your dog doesn’t feel confined.
This keeps the off-leash area neutral territory by keeping the dogs moving. It keeps you more attentive to what’s going on in the park and potential situations. It’s good exercise, too!
Pick up poop
This is the single most important thing you can do to help ensure the ongoing success of these areas. We need to pick up after our dogs and even pick up a few extras! Many dedicated park users do regular poop patrol -- one lap around conscientiously looking for orphan poops and collecting them. If you do this, you not only leave the site looking better than how you found it, you also model responsible behavior for the other dog owners.
Try not to poop patrol alone. Rather, enlist a fellow dog owner to hold a bag open for you while you pick up and pop the poops in the bag. Once you've taught another dog owner to poop patrol, they are much less shy about calling out. "Do you need a bag?" or "Whose golden retriever is taking that dump over there?" when they see a poop about to be ignored.
If you need a bag, take what you need from the bag dispenser box, but please bring some extra bags to share next time you come. Always pick up after your dog, even outside the off-leash area.
Be aware that dogs have different play styles
Educate yourself on dog behavior. Ask questions. A behavior that concerns you may simply be a rambunctious play style. Learn your dog’s behavior to know when they are playing or have had enough.
The dog park isn’t always for everyone
While we think dog parks are a great place for both people and dogs to socialize, we do recognize that not all dogs should be in the park. Dogs that aren’t fixed, especially dominant dogs and those in heat, shouldn’t come to the park. Know when to call it a day and recognize when it may not be the best situation for your dog. If your dog is involved in a fight, both parties should leave the park for the day. If your dog isn’t the social type, try enlisting the help of an animal trainer before bringing them to the park again.
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