Having a dog, means taking responsibility for your pet. They need to go on regular walks. Dogs are very social. They love to interact with humans and other dogs. They like to explore and exercise. Let them run around on their own in your back yard just doesn’t make it.
“Proper exercise is an important part of helping dogs with behavior issues such as aggression and separation anxiety. It’s also quite beneficial for a dog’s mental health even if he or she doesn’t have behavior issues.” – Dog Behavior Expert Scott Sheaffer
America’s most popular dog is the Labrador retriever. Cassandra Day, owner of Circle B Ranch, says “Labrador retrievers make great pets and they make great hunting dogs, but no matter what you’re looking for, you need to respect your Labrador. Lots of love, regular walks, and places for them to run and explore make the perfect life for these family friendly companions.” – circlebranch.com
There are a growing number of dog parks in Pierce County where you can let your dog go off-leash. An off-leash dog park is a park for dogs to exercise and play under the watchful eye of their owners. Parks have different features: wheel-chair access, a pond for swimming, a separate enclosure for small dogs. Off-leash parks let dogs explore, interact with other dogs, run, and enjoy themselves. You can’t just leave them, however. Don’t worry, you don’t need to run with them, but you do have to be a good owner and show concern for other people and their dogs.
Three main general rules:
- You are responsible for your dog.
- Aggressive dogs are not allowed.
- You pick-up after your dog (bring your own scooper and bags).
Comments and reviews from local dog owners on four nearby dog parks:
Fort Steilacoom Dog Park – 8804 Dresden Ln SW, Lakewood, WA 98498
“This is a huge off leash area with a separate area for the little dogs. Took my old lab here for years. Got a dog that needs to run at full speed? This is the place.”
Rogers Park Off-Leash Dog Park – 3151 E L St, Tacoma, WA 98404
“I really like this park . . . I can park my car just outside the fence of the park and the park is small enough to watch my dog from sitting in my car on those rainy days. Also there is a covered bench area that also has a kids play area and on some days the kids come down and play with the dogs. If you are looking to train your dog with not to many distractions this also would be the perfect place as it is so confined.”
Wapato Off-Leach Dog Park – 6802 S Sheridan Ave, Tacoma, WA 98408
“If my dog were leaving this rating she’d give it 1 MILLION STARS! She gets so excited anytime we go here. I personally love the upper dog park area – it’s a good place to train my dog to come to me when I call her name and to do a mini-hike. It feels like you’re out in the woods for a bit but it’s all fenced in, so nothing to worry about.”
Chambers Creek Regional Park – 6320 Grandview Dr W, University Place, WA 98467
“I wish the golf course wasn’t in the middle of all the walking paths. The beach view is very good and the trails are well kept. Hardly any dog poop anywhere, which is great! It has great options for dogs both on and off leash, and the beach section has great views, but it’s not uncommon for there to be seals or even dead seals on the beach, so be aware.”
Love your dog, but respect its need to meet and play with other dogs . . . and run.