Keep Them Fun And Safe
The main reason for visiting any dog park should be for our dog’s enjoyment, so it’s important to watch him while he’s there; he’ll tell you whether or not he’s having fun! Watch for any signs of stress and react accordingly. Learning a little about canine body language and how dogs calm themselves via calming signals will also help you ward off any possible mishaps. Sometimes a short walk outside the park will help your pup calm down enough to return and re-enter with a better outcome.
Please bear in mind that not every dog enjoys romping with and chasing (or being chased by!) his own kind, but that’s OK because most still enjoy being where there are so many new and delightful smells to investigate. And if you bring along one or two favorite toys, you too can enjoy some very special one-on-one time.
A good dog park will post their rules on a nice, big sign for all to read. Admittedly, taking the time to do so while your feisty fido is trying to pull you through the gate is difficult at best, so here’s a copy of the Off-Leash Regulations for the City of Pasadena:
• Dog owners/custodians are responsible at all times for the actions of their dogs while using the park
• Dogs under the age of four months are not allowed to use the facility
• Dogs must be on-leash until inside the fenced off-leash area
• Dog owners/custodians shall: bring no more than 3 dogs into the park; have their dog(s) under voice control at all times; and monitor their dog(s) at all times
• Dog owners/custodians shall remove dog feces and shall dispose of it in a sanitary manner in off-leash area waste containers
• All dogs must be licensed and have current rabies vaccinations. Dogs with communicable diseases are not allowed on park premises at any time.
• Dog owners/custodians shall quiet the dog if it barks and becomes a nuisance (as defined in PMC 6.18.020); the owner/custodian shall promptly remove the dog if such nuisance in not abated
• Dogs are not allowed to dig in the off-leash area. Owners/custodians will be responsible for filling any holes created by their dog.
• Dogs must be accompanied by persons 13 years old or older. Children 12 years of age and younger must be accompanied and supervised by an adult (18 years of age or older) while in the off-leash area.
• No humans visiting the off-leash area shall harass, tease or incite any dog in any way, including but not limited to verbal or physical gestures, or throwing of objects
• Dogs exhibiting aggressive behavior towards any person or animal shall be immediately leashed and removed from the off-leash park by the owner/custodian. If a dog injures a person or another animal, the owner/custodian shall provide owner’s name, address and insurance information to the injured party or to any city employee and shall file a report with the City.
• No food of any kind is permitted in the off-leash area
The use of an off-leash area is a privilege and every person must follow all regulations established for the safety of humans and animals in order to be allowed this privilege. Violations of any of these regulations may be subject to civil penalties and administrative fees and may result in the revocation of the right to use this area (PMC 6.12.011).
There are also some good, old-fashioned common-sense rules that won’t be posted anywhere:
• Take a sensitive or shy dog to a park that’s crowded. More than 2 dogs per 20 square yards of space is too many.
• Force your dog to stay if s/he isn’t enjoying the visit
• Waste a wonderful training opportunity by allowing your dog to misbehave while approaching the park
• Frequent a park that attracts “coffee-clutches.” Everyone should be watching and following their own dogs.
• Frequent a park that doubles as a playground for children
• Enter when there’s a pack of dogs surrounding the airlock
• Rush other people/dog teams within the airlock. “One at a time” is for everyone’s safety.
• Use toys or treats when other dogs or children are nearby. (Yes, the official rules say no food or toys, but sometimes they can be very useful; don’t miss the fine print on their web site!).
• Allow your dog to be part of a loose pack
• Allow one dog to bully another
• Allow your dog off-leash anywhere unless s/he is responsive to verbal cues
• Expect every dog to play with every other dog
• Bring intact (un-neutered) males or females in heat to any dog park
• Punish your dog if he becomes aggressive; just interrupt the behavior and remove him ASAP
• Get your vet’s OK before going
• Make sure your pup’s vaccinations are current. Check out the AAHA’s newest vaccination protocol.
• Keep an eye open for any observable health issues with other dogs
• Scoop up after your dog
• Watch your dog at all times and be ready to interrupt any play that might be too rough for one or all dogs close by
• Watch your dog at all times to make sure s/he isn’t being bullied
• Be willing to leave at the first sign that your dog is being a bully, not having fun, or playing too rough with the others
• Steer clear of intact males and leave if there are too many
• Be cautious about any advice given by other visitors unless they are dog professionals
• Pay attention to the rules for airlocks – they’re there for a very important reason!
Pasadena’s Dog Park – The Happiest Place On Earth, Doggie Style!
Thanks to a few hard working people at POOCH, Pasadena is now home to the best dog park in the area! Alice’s Park, located on E. Orange Grove Boulevard just West of Rosemead Blvd., has everything you could hope for in a dog park. There’s a full 2 1/2 acres for large dogs and 1 acre for small or special needs dogs. Come see for yourself and share in the fun!
For a map, rules and FAQs, click here.
Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.