Etiquette is the way in which we conduct ourselves around others. There are rules for how to act at a dinner table, at a party, at school, and even when conversing with strangers. There are also rules for how to be a good dog owner. These focus not only on how we tend to our dog’s needs, but how we present our dog to the rest of the world. Being a dog owner means taking responsibility for our pet’s actions and making sure that these actions do not disrespect or inconvenience others. Here are four basic dog etiquette rules that you should be familiar with.
Clean Up After Your Dog
As you well know, dogs cannot always be held accountable for when and where they relieve themselves. As a dog owner, you can train your pup to wait or to go outside, but eventually nature’s call will come around, and your dog will answer it. Essentially the rule goes: your dog’s mess is your own mess. When messes occur on your own property, not much harm has been done. However, when you and your dog are out and about, any messes that occur in public should be handled by you and you alone, especially when they occur on another’s property.
Imagine the fury of your neighbors as they accidentally step in a mess your dog made. Imagine how you would feel in a similar situation. This is why, as an owner, you should always have doggie bags on hand to clean up after your dog. Solid waste should always be handled and disposed of immediately.
Keep Your Dog Contained
The next rule to keep in mind is to respect that others you encounter on the street may not wish to interact with your dog. Not everyone can be expected to be a dog person, and having a dog jump up on you unexpectedly as you walk along the street can be very startling. To avoid encroaching on the space of your neighbors, keep your dog nearby on a leash and only let him interact with others if they express an explicit desire to do so.
Maintain the Peace
There comes a time in the evening when families arrive back at home and begin settling down. During this time, it expected that there be a relative peace and quiet in the neighborhood. As a dog owner, your responsibility in part is to maintain this peace by keeping your own pet quiet during the evening hours. Some breeds are more inclined to bark than others, but whether your dog is a Yorkie or a retriever, you should keep him as quiet as possible.
Respect Your Neighbors’ Property
Finally, it is always important to respect what isn’t yours. While it may be obvious to you where your property line ends and your neighbor’s begins, your own dog will not be so astute. Therefore, you should find other means to ensure that your dog will respect the boundaries of his territory. Typically, a fence works fine, but it’s usually best to hire a pro to take care of installing one. Go online to find the best wood fence installers near you.
Dog owners should keep in mind that their dog is a reflection of themselves. If a dog leaves a mess on the sidewalk, barks wildly into the night, or chases after the neighbor’s cat, then the owner should bear just as much of the blame. As an owner, you must take the appropriate steps to ensure that you, your dog, and your neighborhood coexist in harmony.
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