I need to vent. I have a 6 month old poodle mix puppy. She is very friendly, full of energy and loves going to the dog park. I take her almost every day for about an hour.
I believe that the dog park is for the DOGS and I try not to get involved with my puppy while I’m there. It is her one hour of the day to do what she wants and runs freely. I watch her attentively, always pick up her poop, but I try not to get involved directly unless she is by the gate or something and I don’t want her getting out. She has never once shown an ounce of aggression, and luckily no dogs have ever been aggressive with her either (I would of course intervene in that situation). It’s normally been a great part of my day but this last week or so has been super frustrating and I need to vent, and need validation that I am not crazy. I should say that a lot of the people at the dog park are older adults and senior citizens, and they are the ones typically being frustrating.
My puppy loves to explore and sometimes that means she takes things that aren’t hers. So if there’s a toy or a bowl she will probably take it and run around with it for a few minutes before she gets bored and moves onto something else. There are two older ladies in particular that cannot seem to manage their things, and several times a week my puppy will get ahold of their items, including their keys and their bottle of prescription pills?? Other day, pup got ahold of their small bowl, that they left on the ground for pups to use. They yelled at me to get it back from her. I told them I wasn’t going to chase my pup around (she’s way faster than me anyways, and runs faster when she thinks it is a game), and she wasn’t doing anything wrong. I think they shouldn’t leave their items on the ground if they aren’t open to the pups potentially touching them or running around with them. This happens multiple times with the same women. There are also multiple water fountains for the dogs so you don’t NEED to bring your own bowl. But now when they see my pup, they’re like “that’s the dog that took my keys!”
Another man, brings a frisbee and a ball for HIS dog to fetch and play with. While the dog was playing with the ball, he left the frisbee on the ground and my pup went over to sit with it. The man screamed at my puppy and ripped it away from her. I didn’t say anything because this man has been known to have a temper. But why are you bringing toys into a public park (not allowed, by the way), if you don’t want another dog to touch it! I’ve seen this happen with him and multiple other dogs.
I also got into an argument with a different man because he left both gates wide open from the park to the parking lot. I asked why both gates were open, and he told me to calm down and he needed them open to coax his dog out to his car??? I told him that there were two for a reason, and one should be closed at all times. I told him if my dog, or anyone else’s dog, runs out to the parking lot and gets hit or runs away, it has no bearing on his life but it sure affects mine. At least his girlfriend/wife intervened and told him he was in the wrong.
Another thing this week, an older lady had two small dogs on a leash in the park (also not allowed), and my dog went over to say hi- she also loves leashes and likes to walk other dogs around lol. My puppy wasn’t leaving them alone, so I went over to help move her. The lady rudely told me to “get my dog away now or else she’ll be in trouble” Not sure who would be punishing her?? I picked her up and moved her to the other side of the park, and then watched as other dogs came over to both her leashed dogs, until she finally left the park.
I just feel like I am going crazy. I’ve been going to the same dog park for multiple years with other dogs and have never had so many issues. Most people there are chill but it only takes a few rude people to ruin the experience, luckily the main dogs that my pup plays with all have cool owners. But this week is making me dread going there or makes me feel like I need to go at a different time. Anyone have other frustrating experiences to share?