Are dog parks safe during Covid-19 for your dog?
The question that is frequently asked by us pet owners in this challenging time is: Can our pets get Covid-19? On the pawsitive note, disease experts and multiple international health organisations have come to the conclusion that there is currently no evidence at this point that demonstrates that pets can obtain Covid-19, or that they can spread it to humans and other animals.
This is good news to us dog owners who love watching our furbabies have fun socialising with other dogs, exercising and being in ultimate bliss. But does this mean that it is still safe to go to the dog park during the corona virus outbreak?
Are dog parks safe during Covid-19 for me?
Going to the dog park during this pandemic can pose some risks to us pawrents. Chances are that we end up meeting with the usual dog mums and dads at the dog park, and start our usual chit chat about our favourite topic… dogs.
In this case, an infected person can have the potential to spread the virus if you come in contact with their saliva or mucus droplets in a sneeze or cough, or through a contaminated surface (such as the park gate).
There is also a small possibility that a person with corona virus could contaminate their pets fur if they sneeze on them, and pass the virus if another individual were to touch the dog.
This does not mean that you should avoid the park completely, but that you should take extra precaution when you do go during this period. There are some measures we recommend taking that can help protect you during this outbreak, while still being able to watch your dog have a blast at the park.
How to protect myself at the dog park during Covid-19?
#1. Don’t go to the park if you are feeling ill
If you or someone who you live with is feeling under the weather, skip the dog park completely to protect the others from catching the virus. Do not go to the dog park if you or someone you live with has COVID-19. Try to also avoid close contact with people who are sick.
#2. Practice social distancing
Maintain the four square meter rule between pawrents and try to go to the park when it is not crowded. Avoid hugging, hand shaking or any other contact with other park goers.
#3. Don’t touch other people’s dogs
Although there is a low risk of spreading the virus through fur according to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), avoid touching other people’s dogs no matter how adorable they are. Politely decline others when they ask to touch yours.
#4. Hygiene, hygiene and hygiene
Avoid touching your face and sanitise your hands before and after going to the dog park. Carry wet wipes and wipe down the park gate after you enter. Try to wash your hands before and after interacting with your own dog for at least 20 seconds. We also recommend cleaning your dog’s paws by wiping them before entering the car or house to prevent the spread of germs.
These suggestions can minimise the risk of dog parks during this period, and can remain a great place to keep your furry friends active and social. As for the safety of your dog and other dogs, it is still important to practice good dog park etiquette. This includes continuing to train your pal to recall to you when called and rewarding them with extra-special treats during training – like our delicious and healthy Puppy Lamb Treats or our low-fat biscuits.
Did you enjoy reading this post? Help us spread the word by sharing with a friend who might enjoy it.