Can I Take My Dog To A Dog Park?
Dog parks are great because they provide socialization and exercise for dogs. This is especially important for those of us living in an apartment or under the rules of a Home Owners Association. Being allowed some freedom to run is an important part of a dog's well-being.
Remember though, there is still a small risk that people positive with COVID-19 could also be present at the park. Please use common sense and practice social distancing when around others. If you feel it necessary, wear a mask.
The CDC is recommending to not let your pets interact with people outside of your household, especially in places with community spread of COVID-19. Therefore, you should consider avoiding dog parks or other places where large numbers of people and dogs gather.
7 Steps To Reduce Risk at a Dog Park
While some localities are allowing dog parks to open, and you choose to go to a dog park, please remember to follow local guidelines. The CDC has issued these steps to reduce the risk of you or your dog getting infected with COVID-19 if you go to a dog park.
- Do not take your dog to a dog park if you are sick or if you have recently been in close contact with a person with COVID-19.
- Do not take your dog to a dog park if your dog is sick. Signs of sickness in dogs may include fever, coughing, difficulty breathing or shortness of breath, lethargy, sneezing, discharge from the nose or eyes, vomiting, or diarrhea.
- If your dog has tested positive for the virus that causes COVID-19, talk to your veterinarian about when it is appropriate for your pet to go back to normal activities.
- Try to limit your dog’s interaction with other people outside of your household while at the dog park.
- As much as possible, avoid touching common items in the dog park like water bowls. Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer after touching items from the park. To make sure your dog has fresh water, consider bringing your own portable water bowl.
- Limit other pet items brought to the dog park, such as toys. Clean and disinfect anything taken to the park and returned home (leashes, toys, water bowls).
- Do not wipe or bathe your dog with chemical disinfectants, alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or any other products not approved for animal use.
See more information on pets and COVID-19 and recommendations for how to help keep your pet safe.
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