For most of us, our dogs are truly part of the family. We like to take them along for everything from errands around town to the family vacation. Dog parks have sprung up everywhere and there are doggy daycare centers to “babysit" your pooch while you're at work. You can even take your dog to the doggy spa. Because Americans are so attached to their pets, many public places have become pet friendly.
The important thing to remember when you take your dog in public is, not everyone loves dogs. Some people are allergic to dogs, some people are afraid of dogs, and some people just find dogs to be “unsanitary". Everyone has their own opinion regarding dogs in public. Some public places where dogs are now welcome include, outdoor restaurants, pet stores, parks and outdoor festivals.
If you are going to take your dog out in public, make sure you know the rules or restrictions for the location you will be visiting. Small dogs can be carried in a bag, but if they are not restrained in a tote, make sure to have them on a leash. Larger dogs always need to be leashed. Your dog should have basic obedience training and be well mannered and well controlled. However, even the most well behaved dog can forget his manners if he gets excited, and you can't always control the environment. Also, always be prepared to clean up after your dog.
If you are going to take your dog out with you, he needs to be relaxed around strangers and lots of activity and noise. Keep in mind, people that like dogs will probably want to reach out and pet your furry friend and children are likely to be right at your dogs face level. If you have any doubt about how Duke or Fluffy will behave, leave them at home. Its not worth the potential problems that could arise.
Another thing to consider is how your dog will behave or react around other dogs. For many family pets, this is not a problem as they are willing to make friends with everyone, human and canine alike. Certain breeds are more likely to be dog aggressive and if you are not certain how your pooch will behave around other dogs, don't even attempt to take him to the local pet store or dog park.
This issue is something I have had to consider with my own dogs. As much as I would love to take my Dobermans out with me, I know it is not the best idea. Although they are all friendly (as long as there is no threat!) and they all love to meet people, they are not used to being around a lot of strangers. They are also not used to being around young children, and I know my male Doberman is dog aggressive. So, even though I know how wonderful my dogs are, I know better than to think other people would share my feelings!
The bottom line is, use common sense and common courtesy when planning an outing with your favorite four-legged family member.
Joseph M. Sabol is a world class Doberman breeder. Please go to http://petvitamins4u.com or to http://theroadhousedobes.com for further information