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Friday Open Post: Dog Parks -- Love Them or Loathe Them?

If you have no yard, dog parks are great … unless some inattentive bonehead causes a disaster.

 |  Nov 22nd 2013  |   9 Contributions

Every time we post about dog parks we get a mixed reaction. Fewer topics seem to inspire such a sharp divide between dog owners.

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The dog park can be a great place to catch some air! Photo by Dogster member Scruffy

On one hand, dog parks allow folks who don't have a yard to give their dogs an opportunity to run around and socialize -- both very important parts of a happy, healthy dog life. A less obvious benefit is that dog parks also allow these people to give a dog a home in the first place -- if there were no dog parks, fewer people might even consider adopting a dog, leaving more animals to languish in shelters.

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Here's Ace, who helps us review products on Dogster, hanging out at a park. Photo by Dogster member Ace

But going to the dog park requires a certain amount of cooperation from everyone involved, kind of like the way we depend on each other to pay attention while driving. Though there are rules and dog park etiquette, just like you get the occasional accident caused by a driver not paying attention, so too can things get out of hand at the dog park -- especially if someone has his eyes on his cell phone instead of on his dog.

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Photo by Dogster member Popeye

However, a dog park can bring a community together -- like the Dream Dog Park I got to see the opening of in Lancaster, Pennsylvania -- allowing dogs and their owners to hang out and enjoy some sunshine.

Share your dog park stories and opinions in the comments below.

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