1) Dog as family member. These are the crazy bunch who try to get to the dog park come rain, sun or snow. These dogs can often be described as spoiled by non-dog owners, however, for the most part they are well behaved. The dogs get ample exercise and attention. They have had at least basic obedience and have pretty good doggie manners (dogs like children don’t always behave, even with the best parenting). These are the owners and dogs you want to see at the park. This is the type of owner I aspire to be. Let the non-dog owners consider me crazy, I have great dogs because I do the time!
2) Spoiled rotten dogs. These are dogs that get to the dog park, but don’t have any doggie manners. They can be aggressive or misbehave (like peeing on other people), and their owners really don’t care. The owners take the dogs out to show them off, but don’t put the time into having a great dog. They often leave the dog poo right in the middle of the field. The owners put in a half-asses effort and you get poorly behaved dogs.
3) Neglected dogs. These are dogs that people get and I often wonder why. These are not dogs that you see at the park because their owners are too busy to take them out. However, occasionally you run into them at the vet clinic or when visiting others. They have not been socialized; they do not get enough exercise; they are left alone most of the day. They are never properly trained and never get to reach their full doggie potential. These ones make me the saddest. (The worst cases of this can equal true abuse, but that is too sad to talk about).