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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

It's a Dog's Life, at the Mad. Dog Run

Mad Dog, NYC
Photo by myself in Madison Square Park, at 23rd Street and Fifth Avenue.

The dog run at Madison Square Park is appropriately named 'Mad Dog.' Here, dogs of all shapes and sizes get their run on.

Above, an eager Jack Russell waits for his owner to toss a tennis ball.


New York humans have their parks and fancy gyms. New York dogs, on the other hand, have their dog runs.

Without backyards to romp around in, dogs have to share their outdoor spaces and play nice. Public dog runs usually have separate spaces for big dogs and small ones. Often provided are fresh water and benches for humans.

It's not easy being a NY dog. You have to abide by a tacit set of rules (no humping, no biting, stop play when yelps occur). You have to tolerate traffic and crowded sidewalks. There isn't much grass.

Incidentally, check out the Times for a series called 'The Puppy Diaries', documenting a puppy's first year of life. This week, Scout, a gorgeous labrador retriever, visits New York for the first time. It's a familiar scenario, where an owner wonders whether the city is the right place for a dog.

Mad Dog, NYC
Above, a Shibu Inu surveys all from his perch.

Related posts: Off Leash, in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, Sharing a Moment and Keeping Your Dogs in a Row.


Olivier said...

j'ai jamais bien compris l'adoration des New-Yorkais pour leurs chiens, mais au moins la ville est propre

Kizz said...

If you can get to them (and your dog can handle them) off leash hours in the parks are where it's at! I feel really lucky to live so close to a city park where that's an option.

elsiee said...

my poor orange couty suburban pups are emotionally unfit for dog park action! I love the shot of the Shibu Inu surveying it's domain!

prashant said...

I feel really lucky to live so close to a city park where that's an option.
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fishwithoutbicycle said...

Even after almost 10years in NYC I always find it surprising how big some of the dogs are that must live in relatively teensy apartments in New York. There's a guy on my street who has 3 American bulldogs!!! Three!! And another who has a Great Dane. What's that about? When I lived in London I found flat-dwellers much more likely to have cats!!

NYC Rhymology said...

I've always been amused by the argument that dogs shouldn't live in 'small NYC apartments', considering that most people are much larger than dogs! (So perhaps we humans shouldn't either?) To Olivier (first comment): yes, the dogs runs help, but unfortunately there is still too much dog poop on the sidewalks. (PS: Thanks for a rhyme idea, NYP.)

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