If you are a proud doggy parent, it is likely that you’ve gone taken your furbaby to the dog park. Dog parks are interesting spaces, full of a colorful assortment of people that you would otherwise probably never talk to. The dog park is like a microcosm of the real world, except everyone loves dogs (as they all should, anyways). These are they types of people you will meet at the dog park.
The Helicopter Parent
(Disclaimer: This is me). Their behavior falls on a spectrum ranging from slightly comical to downright obnoxious. They come equipped with portable water bowls and toys. They carefully follow their dog around, making sure that s/he never gets out of their line of vision. If a newish doggy parent, gets nervous when their pupper play fights, or otherwise makes passive aggressive comments about the behavior of other dogs.
That Person Who Uses The Dog Park As If It’s Their Backyard
Like a lot of people, this person doesn’t have a backyard. Or maybe they do, but they act as if the dog park is their second backyard. They monopolize a large space, and continuously play fetch with their dog. No big deal, you think. But then another dog tries to intercept the ball. Or the person’s dog gets distracted and actually wants to play with another dog. That’s when this this certain dog park visitor goes berserk. Obviously, no playing is allowed, only ball time. This person has the ability by keeping every other person at bay, purely because they seem to spout fire from under their eyebrows.
Person With A Million Dogs
There are only 5 humans in the dog park, but it seems like there are 20 dogs. And then you notice the person with about a hundred leashes, a permanently sweaty face, and a water bottle covered with “Adopt Don’t Shop,” “I Heart My Dog,” and other dog-related stickers. They snap reprimands whenever one of their dogs acts up, and they are undeniably on top of their shit (and thankfully their dogs’ shit as well).
That One Person Without A Dog
Maybe this was once (or still is) you. They’re usually college aged, but sometimes not. They come in quietly, trying to walk all stealthily, thinking that they won’t get noticed that they don’t have a floof romping around them. No one says anything to them, and they don’t say a word to anyone that isn’t a canine. They will either be sitting quietly on a bench, gazing over at the dogs with a nostalgic and hungry look in their eyes. Or they’re in the midst of about 10 dogs, getting as many kisses and pats in to last them for the rest of their otherwise dogless week.
Lone Guy Avoiding Eye Contact
He stands apart from the group, maybe with a hoodie on. He either uses his sunglasses to avoid possible eye contact, but most likely he’s staring at his phone. With noticeable effort, he exudes an aura of distance from everyone else. He occasionally throws a glance to his pupper, but he makes it clear that he is there only or his pupper, and socialization on his part is as unwelcome as dog poo on your shoes.
The Person Who Never Picks Up Their Dogs Business
The walking, circling, and finally the crouching. You know the moves, but it’s not your furbaby. You glance around, assuming that someone will come by to pick up after their dog. But nope. Their human is stubbornly oblivious, either talking to someone, or simply (and coincidentally) looking the exact opposite direction of their dog. You look back at the doggy, and he is already finished his business, leaving a fresh pile right next to the water fountain. At the exact moment that the dog runs around, adorably with a stick in his mouth, their person turns their attention to their pupper. And they tally up another win for stealthily not cleaning up after their dog.
The Person Who Apparently Lives There
They are there literally every time you and your pooch go. It doesn’t matter if it is in the morning or evening, on a Saturday or a Monday. They’re already seated at a table, and is apparently in the know of every dog’s name. They have a backpack, filled with books, water bottles, and who knows what else. Usually old, so you reason that this is how they socialize. And then you begin to question why they go to the dog park: for their dog, or themselves.
The Clueless Person
This person has apparently not ever been around dogs before, as they seem clueless how to take care of them. They come in tripping over the leash. They either get nervous when their dog is playing (because they think that they are actually fighting), or they think that playing includes aggressive growling and snapping. They often bring their dog in the middle of the day – when it’s too damn hot – or right after their dog had a bath. Also easily spotted because they’re wearing something that is more appropriate to wear to a gala, and not to a muddy dog park.
The Person Who Is Insistent On Giving Advice
Arguably the most annoying person on this list, and at the dog park. They give everyone free advice. Advice on which shampoos to use. Why you need to use leather over chain leashes, harnesses over collars, portable water dishes over water bottles. Use a clicker when training. To kennel your dog, to not kennel your dog. How to get them to stop jumping on people. They might, just might really be wanting to help you out. And sometimes the advice isn’t bad. But like a yappy little shih tzu,they just don’t know when to shut up and sit down.