Behaviour / Dogs

Dog Park Rules

Golden Labrador Dog at the park near water

If you are a parent of the human kind, you would be familiar with the unspoken rules around bringing your children to the park. Most parents know that it’s common sense to supervise how your child plays at the park with his/her peers and to intervene where necessary to allow for safe play. The same can be said for parents of the canine kind. It’s common sense as the pack leader to ensure that the members of your pack, play in harmony amongst their four legged friends. Whether you are a new Pawrent (see what I did there) or just lacking a bit of common sense, (no offence) most dog parks will actually have a sign clearly displaying the rules to follow.

retriever on a leash

I believe this number one rule would likely apply to all cities but The city of Melbourne website states that all dogs must be on-leash while in all public areas unless you are in a designated off-leash area in a park.
Also your dog(s) must be on a leash if they are within 20 metres of a children’s playground or a permanent barbeque and picnic area. They must remain on a leash near fountains, ponds and lakes and not enter any body of water. They are prohibited from the entire precinct of Trin Warren Tam-boore, the recycling wetland in Royal Park. There are 38 acres of designated off-leash park land to exercise dogs in the City of Melbourne. There are eight parks with designated off-leash areas for dogs. Head over to the City of Melbourne website to check out the maps.

beagle dog on a leash in the park

Here are some additional rules that you may find displayed in and around areas that allow dogs off leash.

  • Dogs with registration and current vaccinations only
  • Limited to 15 dogs at a time
  • No female dogs on heat
  • Dog handlers must be in view and in control of their dog(s) at all times
  • Owners must dispose of waste immediately
  • Dogs who bark incessantly or are aggressive will be removed
  • Owners are responsible for any injury or damage caused by their dog(s)
  • Children must be closely supervised at all times
  • Animal or human food or treats are not permitted

no poo dog park sign

As a parent of both the animal and human kind, I like to think that I do my part when it comes to following the spoken and unspoken rules in playgrounds and parks. So to prevent yourself from being the pawrent with ‘that’ dog, no one wants to play with, please follow the rules – you have been warned.

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