How Dog Parks Should Look

 

Takoda was cooped up. Literally. We took him on our roadtrip to Jackson Hole this week thinking we could keep him in his crate in the car in the parking garage while we skied. It was no different than at home when we go out and his Petmate crate is ginormous.

The garage is heated and we regularly checked on him. I would have brought him into the hotel if The White Buffalo Club allowed dogs. Not even close. I had to initial a statement that if evidence of a dog were found, I’d be charged $1000! That bit of info wasn’t on their website before we planned the trip so good thing we had free garage parking to shelter him from the sub-zero cold outside.

They really don’t like dogs here. As gorgeous as the rooms are, the front desk dude gives me this weird look every time I pass to go out to the dog. What? I want to snip.

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The gals in my ski school clinic told me about a nearby dog park when I asked and I beelined for it as soon as I returned to town. Sophie’s Place off Scott Lane is one of the nicest dog parks I’ve ever been to.  The lot is huge and live trees dot the center. I bet the benches underneath them are shaded in the summer when those trees have leaves.

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There are rock features, a mini stage and a touching memorial tree where owners can hang tiny lanterns or their dogs’ tags to honor their beloved pets that’ve passed. Tears welled up in my eyes as I gently tickled the tags with my fingers. Channeling the pain of loss they must have felt as they hung these.

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Takoda was in doggy heaven; bounding with the other dogs who came for their daily workout. There are even two smaller attached pens where shy or passive dogs can play without being molested by bigger pooches.

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Sophie’s isn’t lit so, as dusk set, we left the park. That’s when I noticed the bad news. Sophie’s is being displaced for a community housing project. They will supposedly be in a new location by 2014 but I can’t imagine any place being as nice as this one. The Pet Advocacy and Wellness Support group of Jackson (PAWS) created the park and they are asking for donations to help build the new one. If you have a dog and visit this Jackson park I hope you’ll consider offering your support!