When Bernice was a baby, everyone told me a great place to socialize her is at the Dog Park. Bernice was (and is) my first dog as an adult. Being a naïve dog owner, I started taking her to the dog park daily. This went on for about a year.
During the year at this wonderful mecca of socialization, Bernice:
- Tore both knees from holes made by other dogs. As a result, she had 2 TPLO surgeries. Thankfully I have awesome Pet Health Insurance.
- Was attacked by dogs in 4 separate incidents (3 of the attacks were Chocolate Labs and the other was a Dalmatian Mix).
- Got kennel cough twice.
Needless to say, we no longer go to the dog park and I’m embarrassed that it took me a year to figure this out.
I’m not saying all dog parks are bad. If you know the owners and have a group of responsible “regulars,” dog parks can be great.
The problem I have with dog parks in general is:
– There is always the person not watching their dog since they are too busy talking/texting on their cell.
– Dog parks are a haven for Giardia. Giardia is an infection of the small intestine caused by a microscopic organism. Giardia is found in pools/puddles of water. If the water dries up, Giardia has a protective outer shell and can lie dormant for up to a year without water. Once it rains, Giardia can come back to life. Giardia is super fun because not only does your pet get it, but it can also be transferred to humans. Symptoms of Giardia are abdominal pain, diarrhea, gas, headache, loss of appetite, fever, nausea and vomiting.
– You dog can tear their knees and ankles by holes made by other dogs. TPLO surgeries average about $4000-$5000 a knee.
– If you have a Pit Bull and there is a fight, your Pit can be 200 feet away and somehow people will always want to blame the Pit Bull. Notice above how I mentioned the specific breeds that attacked Bernice. At that time, she was too young to defend herself. On the 4thattack, Bernice fought back and it was scary. I soon learned that responsible Pit Bull owners keep their dogs out of situations where their Pit Bull isn’t going to be set up to fail. On a random side note…a dog fight is terrifying. I have broken up dog fights by sticking my finger up a dog’s butt. I know it sounds disgusting, but it doesn’t hurt the dog and it gets their attention.
– How about those wonderful pet sitters that bring their caravan of dogs? How does one person effectively watch that many dogs?
– There are also people that bring dogs that have been cooped up for hours while the owner is at work. These dogs can be in a heightened state of anxiety as they haven’t had an energy release all day. This heightened state can take rough playing to a nasty fight in seconds.
Here’s an email from one of our clients regarding a situation she had with her Italian Mastiff (which remotely resembles a Pit Bull) at her local dog park:
Yesterday was a beautiful day at the dog park! In most parts of the park I keep Bob on a leash. Here why… Yesterday we walked the entire park. Bob really doesn’t pay attention to other dogs unless they want to play. I was walking with him and noticed about four little tiny dogs. I walked in the other direction to give them some space. This little dog decides to approach Bob with his high pitch bark and even went to bite Bob. Bob just stood there and knows how to treat little dogs. The owner said “Ha my dog put your dog in his place, what kind of guard dog do you got?” I responded to them by saying “Should I unleash my dog? If I do, I know for a FACT my dog will put your dog in his place. However, my dog has manners and respects other dogs, unlike you. Your dog should be the one on a leash.” I feel people think because they have tiny dogs and allow their dogs to bark and act up. Although upset by this women’s remark, I laughed and walked away. She wasn’t worth the headache. It’s because of the breed I own, I take responsibility for my dog. Why can’t people be more like that? This is the only bad thing about dog parks. Owners don’t seem to care about what their dogs are doing.
To be a responsible Pit Bull (and all other dog breed) owner it is also important to make sure you have:
– Home insurance that covers your Pit Bull.
– Renters insurance that covers your Pit Bull.
– Condo insurance that covers your Pit Bull.
– And/or Liability insurance that covers your Pit Bull.
For more information regarding insurance to cover your Pit Bull, visit https://einhorninsurance.com/dangerous-dog-liability-insurance/, call 858-336-4644 or email us at Agent@EinhornInsurance.com. Even if your dog has a history of aggression or bites, we can help.
As proud Pit Bull owners, we are passionate about Pit Bulls. We have worked with Pit Bull Rescues for over 10 years and are happy to help and educate fellow responsible Pit Bull Owners.