Finally, finally, I have a big date coming up. It’s on Thursday and I can hardly wait for it. Thursday’s weather is expected to be in the 70’s here and I’m purposely keeping some hours free on my schedule on that day for my big date. Ahhhh… so excited, even if it’s just a date to the DOGGIE PARK!
Yes, that’s right: the doggie park. Like many people, my dog is my best buddy and I’m so excited that the weather will be warm enough this week to truly enjoy a warm day at the dog park with her. My dog park is less than 10 minutes away, but I wish we had a dog area at the nudist park where I live so that my dog could run around happily with other pups in a safe enclosed area without me having to get dressed. Maybe I’ll bring that up to the owners.
At my nudist park, like at so many others, we have lots of dogs. My dog, Little Bare, lives here year-round and our neighbor Suzanne has her little boy dog next door. When going down to camp, Little Bare enjoys playing with her best buddy, Punkin, or her other best buddy, Brady. In our walks through the park we also meet up with Nobbie and other doggie friends. This might be a nudist park instead of a dog park, but our dogs are pretty prominent members.
I can’t remember which park it is, but I recently received some kind of correspondence from a nudist park that advertised it’s dog park within the park. In thinking about it, this is a fabulous idea: there are so many dogs and dog owners at our parks that it just makes sense to let a section “go to the dogs.” I know that White Tail Resort has a special area to commemorate pets from the park that have passed. This is a neat idea, too, especially for those of us who count our pups as our favorite family member.
In looking up the statistics, I see that 46.3 million households in the USA have a dog. This is the most common pet, followed by cats at 38.9 million. An estimated 51 billion dollars was spent on pets in 2011 and that amount seems to be increasing each year. I take personal responsibility for that as I look around my home at the numerous toy bins for puppy, look in her closet at her many sweaters and coats (how does a dog in a nudist household LOVE to be dressed???), and note the many color-coordinated collars and tags. (The statistics note $43 annually for toys. ANNUALLY? Isn’t that more like a month…. Or even a really good week???) I guess we could summarize the statistics by saying that the pet industry is one of the few really growing industries right now. I love that our AANR parks are right on this trend by having dog parks, pet memorials, and realizing that pets are an important part of the park.