Dog Park, how long? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-20-2011, 10:37 PM Thread Starter
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Dog Park, how long?

I take my 6 month old to the dog park. Im not concerned about aggressive dogs or anything...most dogs are about his size and my GSD tends to be one of the more aggressive dogs (wrestling etc).

My question is, how long is okay to let him run around at the dog park?

He runs and wrestles and sniffs and plays....and when he is tired he walks instead of runs, or sits with a ball and chews on it at my feet. He seems to pace himself well...and we are usually there an hour in the morning and an hour in the evening.

The rest of the day he is sitting on the couch with me or at my feet sleeping.

Everything i read on searches makes me think this is too much playtime...is that true?
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 08:14 PM Thread Starter
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Anyone?
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 08:40 PM
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I take my dog who turns 8 months on Sept 22nd to the dog park daily. She has been going since she was a young pup and fully vaccinated.

She plays for 20-30 minutes during the week because I have to work. She spends the time running after balls at a full burner run. She also goes in and out of the doggy pool too cool off.

She does not play with the other dogs as she once did. She is strictly ball focused and is only there for the chase. Her personality transformation from a young pup to now is amazing. She was once the submissive mouth kissing social butterfly up until about 6-8 weeks ago. Now she is Miss Alpha and really does not go up to the other dogs and as mentioned is there strictly for the ball chase.

During the weekend I let her run and play a good 40-60 minutes. It is just very very hot where we live, so we have to keep it to that time frame. Like I said she does go in and out of the pools constantly.

Tomorrow is day 1 back at the park after an episode she had yesterday. She is doing better and she definitely needs to go out and run some energy off.


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Last edited by Stella's Mom; 09-21-2011 at 08:46 PM.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 08:44 PM
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Hmm well, I'm probably one of the least knowledgable to answer you but here goes.

I zeroed in on your comment of your dog being one of the "more aggressive." What does that really mean? Just that he plays hard or ?

As far as how long is too long? Well... I believe there is no such thing really. A tired dog is a good, good, good dog.

BUT on that note, I wouldn't want my dog's only exercise source to be the dog park.

There are many dog park opponents here, and for good reason. So many bad things happen at them. I have never had a bad experience, but it only takes one.
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 09:06 PM
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I take my dog to the park for about an hour and that seems to be enough for him in terms of playing with other dogs. 2 hours of play for a 6 month old doesn't seem excessive to me especially since it's spaced out. But, I would suggest finding more outlets for play than just the dogpark. You said the rest of the day is spent relaxing. Do you play any games with your pup indoors that challenge his mind? Mental exercise is also a good way for puppies to drain energy.
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 09:08 PM
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Ditto. Dog parks are too dangerous for many reasons, we avoid them and recommend our adopters do as well.
Can you simply walk and do obedience with him to work his body and mind?
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 09:18 PM Thread Starter
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Let me clarify...aggressive was the wrong word. He is one of the more dominant dogs. He wants to play with EVERYONE but he usually finds a dog or two who love to wrestle and they chase each other and wrestle and go back and forth. He just tends to win. But never ever mean, never hurts other dogs.

In terms of mental stimulation he gets plenty. He is in classes and just started K9 Nosework... and while we are at home I spend time training him myself so we do basic commands and I will now be setting up a handful of boxes with treats hidden in one to practice using his nose.

I also make him do a handful of commands before he gets to eat, including sit/stays for about 30 seconds (and increasing) while I go into another room.

Just wanted to make sure 2 hours throughout the day isn't TOO much dogpark time. I live in the city so I can't really go on long walks with him...nowhere to really go...too many cars..etc
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 09:19 PM
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You should never take your dog to a dog park for exercise. It's an extra activity. We goto the dog park once maybe twice a week tops. The rest of the week we are training. Mind + body exercise. The dog park is a fun activity but shouldn't be used as a way to exhaust your dog. If you've ever noticed I bet your dog is back up an hour or two after their nap home from the park. I think dog park are great, if you have a responsible group of dog owners then you will have a successful park. You have to always keep in mind there are as many different types of energy levels and personalities in dog as there are for kids. Kids in a playground get into scuffles and run to mommy crying. Same goes with dogs. It is what it is, you play at your own risk. You drive at your own risk. You walk your dog down the street at your own risk. It's all a risk. Most of the time the risk is worth it. Take it from the VP of a dog park

You either like em or you don't. Nothing wrong with that.


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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 09:38 PM
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i'm not against the dog parks. i use the dog parks
to train and socialize. we train on the outside of the
fenced in area. as a reward my pup/dog is allowed to
go in the dog park and run free with the other dogs.
once my dog is following commands along the outside of the fenced in area we go inside and continue commands. once inside the fenced in area
the commands are short. i slowly build his time up for following
commands inside the dog park.
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-21-2011, 09:46 PM
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I live in a city as well and I take my dog on long walks. I'm not sure what you mean by "nowhere to go"? If the sidewalks where you live are too congested you can find a quieter area and walk around there.
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