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Bella Bark: Dog Park Etiquette and Safety

In addition to outlining the best dog parks in New Orleans, we’re also pleased to have our own dedicated park for the pups: Bella Bark at Bella Ridge. Whether you choose to let your dog run and play at Bella Bark or one of the city’s other great dog parks, there are definitely a few rules to keep in mind! Keep scrolling to review dog park etiquette and safety information.

The exclusive Bella Bark dog park at Bella Ridge.

The exclusive Bella Bark dog park at Bella Ridge.

Dog Park Etiquette and Safety

First, ask yourself: Is your dog a good fit for the dog park?

All dogs love to run and play, but not all dogs are good candidates for a dog park full of other dogs with different personalities. Here are a few ways to determine whether or not your dog should be at the park:

  • Does your dog have an anxious personality? If so, the hubbub of a dog park might put him on edge. Try taking him at quiet times during the day (for example, mid-morning) for a happy medium.
  • Is your dog new? Make sure you get to know your dog one-on-one before you introduce her to other pets and social situations. This is especially true of rescue dogs, who may have had previous traumatic experiences. And remember, puppies younger than 6 months old are not suitable for dog parks!
  • Does your dog have alpha tendencies? If your dog just loves being top dog — to the point that he might pick fights with other dogs — it’s probably better to limit his time at the park! If you do choose to take him, make sure to keep a sharp eye on his behavior.

OK, so your dog is a good candidate for a dog park. But does she meet these requirements?

Our dog park — like most dog parks — has general rules and requirements. Familiarize yourself with them below!

  • Dogs must be spayed or neutered
  • Dogs must be vaccinated (the state of Louisiana mandates vaccination against rabies, distemper, and bordatella)
  • Owners must clean up and properly dispose of his or her dog’s waste
  • Dogs must be leashed outside of the dog park and off-leash once they’re inside
  • No dog treats, human food, or glass are allowed within the dog park

Good Dog: The importance of being courteous!

Rules are just one half of the dog park experience. The other half is courtesy and etiquette. Here are a few ways you can maximize dog park enjoyment, both for the humans and their four-legged friends.

  • Do not allow a dog to bully another dog. Play nice!
  • Discourage dogs from forming packs.
  • Supervise your dog while he or she is playing at the park. This means limiting cell-phone time and socializing to make sure you’re being vigilant!
  • Keep the gates closed to prevent dogs from running in and out.
  • Discourage your dog from digging.

Know Your Dog’s Behaviors

The Association of Professional Dog Trainers has several helpful tips on behaviors to watch for while you’re supervising your dog’s park playtime. Note: if you see signs of aggression, you will need to intervene. Try a non-physical intervention first, such as clapping or whistling. Remember, physically separating dogs is a last resort! Instead, plan on prevention wherever possible.

Signs of Anxiety:

  • A low tail with fast wagging
  • Whining
  • Ears pinned back

Signs of Fear:

  • Tucked tail
  • Tense
  • Head down
  • Hunched position

Signs of Aggression:

  • Pinning another dog
  • Bullying
  • Snarling or raised lips
  • Baring teeth
  • Raised hackles


Best Apartments for Dogs in New Orleans

When you have a dog, they’re part of the family — and just as you want the very best space for yourself and loved ones, you also want a space ideal for your four-legged friend.

1st Lake Properties is a pet-friendly company with thousands of apartments ideal for dogs across Greater New Orleans. However, a few of our properties are especially suited to pups for their proximity to sprawling outdoor spaces like Lafreniere Park.

Even better, Bella Ridge has a dog park called Bella Bark right on the premises that’s ideal for you and your dog.

Learn more about our pet policies and best apartments for dogs in New Orleans below.

The exclusive Bella Bark dog park at Bella Ridge.

The exclusive Bella Bark dog park at Bella Ridge.

Best Apartments for Dogs in New Orleans

Bella Ridge

How great would it be to have a dog park at arm’s length? That’s the reality at Bella Ridge, a luxury apartment community in River Ridge that’s thought of every last detail from oversized tubs to a dedicated space for your pet. The on-site dog park, Bella Bark, is a safe, convenient, well-lit place for dogs and owners alike to mingle and get some fresh air. It also features agility equipment to keep your dog fit while having fun. This exclusive dog park is available only for Bella Ridge residents — contact us today for specials!

Apartments with Proximity to Lafreniere Park

Several of our Metairie apartment communities like Sandpiper, Parktowne, Boardwalk, and Breakers are all just a short distance from Lafreniere Park. This sprawling green space in Metairie features a dog park called Bark Park, a 5-acre space just for pups. The park is open on Tuesdays through Sundays from 7 a.m. until dusk. On Mondays, the park opens at 1 p.m. and remains open through dusk. Separated into two sub-parks — one for large dogs and one for dogs under 22 pounds — Bark Park features agility courses and scenic views.

1st Lake Properties Pet Policy

  • Our pet deposit for one pet (20 pounds or less full grown) is $300, $100 of which is non-refundable. Following the deposit, 1st Lake charges a pet fee of $15 per month.
  • If you have two pets, 1st Lake requires a $600 deposit, $100 of which is non-refundable. The monthly pet fee thereafter is $25 per month.
  • All pets must be on leashes when walking around property grounds.
  • For a list of restricted dog breeds, visit our Pet Policy blog post.

 


Pet Dog Costume Ideas for Barkus and Beyond

In New Orleans, you never need a reason to don a costume – and neither does your pet. Whether it’s Halloween, the Mystic Krewe of Barkus parade, or anything in between, here are a few pet costume ideas for your dog.

For Barkus

Each year, the Mystic Krewe of Barkus hosts a Mardi Gras parade just for the dogs. For 2016, the reigning king is Alex, a Weimaraner found in New Orleans who made headlines internationally for his miraculous recovery. We’re not sure what costume Alex will have on, but if you’re interested in marching in Barkus (happening Sunday, Jan. 31 at 2 p.m.; you can register your dog the day of the parade) here are a few ideas:

DIY Red, White, and Blue Costume – The theme of the 2016 Barkus parade is “From the Dog House to the White House.” For an easy, DIY costume, you can bedeck your dog in patriotic colors using ribbons tied around his collar. Or, you can browse these patriotic costumes. Bonus points: they’ll double as costumes for the 4th of July!

Party City Costumes Party City’s online shop has dozens of pet costumes to choose from, related to pop culture, classic themes, pirates, superheroes and more. You can also visit the Party City retail store in the Elmwood shopping center right near our new Bella Ridge property.

Lagniappe: Cat Costumes

Your feline friend probably won’t be as willing to don a costume, but if you decide she just can’t be without a Mardi Gras getup, consider online shops like Etsy that sell handmade cat costumes. Just remember that Fluffy might be more inclined for a festive collar rather than a full-on costume – most pet stores have a wide selection of cat collars in fun colors and patterns.