Things happen. Dogs get hurt. But when accidents happen are you ready?
When Accidents Happen: This evening at Nose Creek Off-Leash Dog Park there was a kerfuffle (I was nearby but didn't see what happened; I witnessed the aftermath) one dog attacked another dog which resulted in some blood being shed. The owner of the dog that did the attacking left the dog park quite quickly saying that because we were at an off-leash park, they were not responsible....
To clarify - even at an off-leash dog park you are responsible for your dog!
"Pet owners are responsible for cleaning up after their pets in order to help keep all areas within the City well maintained for everyone to use and enjoy. Please ensure that pets are in control at all times - on or off of a leash." source: http://www.airdrie.ca/index.cfm?serviceID=226
Accidents happen. The only difference is that accidents with dogs cost a lot more than accidents with humans.
Taking Accountability: We never want to be in a situation where our dog accidentally injures another dog, but neither does the dog or pet parents of the dog that just got injured. If you stay and provide your information and offer to help with the vet bill, it's going to be much easier situation then if your license plate is written down and the police are called in to investigate...
side note: Here is the link to the Airdrie Dog control Bylaw NO. 788: http://www.airdrie.ca/getDocument.cfm?ID=379 see page 3 "RESPONSIBILITIES OF DOG OWNERS" and page 11 "SCHEDULE C -PENALTIES" 401(a) - If a dog bites a person or persons... the first offence ticket is $100. From what I read and understood, the bylaw doesn't say anything about a fee for a dog nipping another dog.
Knowing What To Do: So now this poor pup is bleeding. Do you know what to do and check for? How to tell if he or she is in shock? A Pet First Aid course may seem like a lot of money, but when you come across an unfortunate situation like this one (and I hope you never will) you'll be happy to know you took the course and learned the how to's (check for shock, perform CPR, dress a wound...)
side note: If you're interested in taking first aid, please email me firstname.lastname@example.org and I will connect with one of our local pet first aid companies and arrange a community class.
Insurance: If you ever chose to hire a dog walker, please check to make sure they have two things:
1) Dog Walker Insurance: Yes, there really is such thing designed specifically for dog walkers. This way if your dog gets hurt or accidentally hurts another dog while in the dog walkers' care, you're not going to end up with a large bill. Again, accidents can happen and you want to be prepared!
2) Commercial Motor Vehicle Insurance: In order to properly, safely and legally "transport" dogs (pick up/drop off, visits to the dog park) an individual needs commercial insurance and a commercial plate. This is different than having a vehicle registered to a business.
side note: When people ask me if I have insurance, I have to chuckle because it feels like my insurance has insurance for my insurance in case my insurance isn't feeling well. BUT I would rather have it and not use it, than not have it and need it. Safety first!
Until next time... see you at the dog park!