Responsible Pet Parents

Responsible Pet Owners Month

Most of us are responsible pet parents, but we’ve all met those annoying people who give the dog-loving (and cat-loving) parents a bad name. Of course, we aren’t perfect and sometimes we make mistakes, have accidents and the unexpected happens. If you see yourself in any of the following situations, you might want to rethink how you and your pet’s behavior affects others. No one wants to be that pet parent, but sometimes it happens even if unintentionally.

Unwanted Greetings – not every human wants to meet your dog and even some dog people don’t want to greet your jumping up dog. Keep your greetings by invitation only.

Not Cleaning Up – this is a big one. No one should have to clean up after your dog. It really isn’t biodegradable. Always have bags with you, whether on neighborhood walks or at the local dog park.

Being A Know-It-All – unless you’re a professional dog trainer or behaviorist don’t share your opinion. You probably know your dog very well and what works for your dog may not work for others. Recommend a great trainer or Vet, let them be the know-it-alls.

Ignoring Leash Laws – this one ties into “not cleaning up.” If your dog is roaming unattended, who’s cleaning up? If your dog is off leash with you, he may be friendly, but the dog he’s bounding up to may not be so friendly. Save the no leash for the off-leash parks.

Not Paying Attention – as stated above letting your dog roam the neighborhood is not a responsible pet parent and that goes for the dog park. The dog park isn’t a place for you to catch up on your Facebook posts, emails or be distracted by your phone. Be in the moment with your dog.
Forcing Hellos – remember how you didn’t like it when your mom would force you to make friends. Well, your dogs have their likes and dislikes and they don’t like to be forced into hellos either.

Cats – yes, this sounded like I was bashing on dog owners, but cat owners have some bad behaviors, too! Bad Kitty! If you own a cat keep it inside. Unless you live on a farm and your cat is a barn cat, indoors is the safest and healthiest place for your cat. If they must be outside, spay or neuter your cat.

These are just a few things you can do to be a responsible pet owner. We have gotten some privileges in recent years, but there are always people who would like to take them away. Having dog parks and beaches, having pets allowed in condos and apartments aren’t rights and bad behaviors make it harder on the next pet owner. Be a responsible pet parent – Good human!

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