Kids and Dog Parks

Kids and Dog Parks

Virginia’s Arlington County may ban children under the age of eight from its dog parks.

While it is true that young children might damage valuable canines, perhaps there is room for compromise. We suggest allowing children in dog parks if they weigh under 80 pounds and are well-supervised, adequately socialized, and on leashes.

Related: Rules and Regulations for Arlington’s Community Canine Areas (CCA).

Image (“Two Bloggers, after Norman Rockwell”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht,

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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3 Responses to “Kids and Dog Parks”

  1. Dog Gone Says:

    As a dog trainer, I have some sympathy for the reasons behind such a rule, to protect both children and dogs.

    Smaller dogs have a greater frequency of biting than do larger dogs … smaller dogs are more likely to feel threatened by people who are all larger than they are. Children, especially small children, make more of the movements and sounds that are likely to evoke that fear response.

    I don’t think the child on a leash rule will catch on – not that I assume you meant it seriously. But heaven knows in a variety of public places, like shopping malls, I have often wished that some of them were, and equipped with a human equivalent of bark collars as well.

  2. Mike Licht Says:

    Dog Gone wrote: Smaller dogs have a greater frequency of biting ….

    Now that I think about it, smaller children do, too.

  3. pawsinsd Says:

    I think that dog parks should be people parks and there should not be fences, but terrain that may separate areas according to what the neighbors want. No more big dog/small dog areas/disputes. In a usual leash-free area a dog has no need to claim territory. If he does common sense rules say go away for today, learn how to behave and come back later. Dog owners are exceptional rule-enforcers, because they might lose park priveleges.

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