What is an off-leash park?
Off-leash areas are local council designated areas where owners may exercise their dogs off the lead. The dog must still remain under effective control of the owner.
What are the benefits of off-leash areas?
On the positive side, off leash areas are a fantastic way of exercising an energetic pooch and their owners get a chance to socialise with other like-minded individuals. (Studies have shown that these areas are a hive of neighbourhood information.)
And the negatives?
On the negative side, off leash areas do not suit all dogs and can be extremely stressful places for dog owners to visit. If your dog misbehaves, for example (and whose doesn’t at times?!), you may find yourself ostracised by the rest of the dog walking community.
In general, off leash parks suit younger, energetic and very sociable dogs. A dog that has been poorly socialised when young will rarely enjoy encountering lots of new dogs and people. A more mature dog will rarely tolerate the antics of younger dogs.
Tips for off-leash areas
If you choose to exercise your canine companion in an off leash area, here are some essentials: