By Shannon Miller, GPG Volunteer/Blogger

After what I was certain would be an endless winter, the spring weather makes me — and my dogs — want to get out and do things. While my hobbies include eating brunch on patios and sitting in the park, not everything I love to do is exactly a big treat to my pups. Unless your dog can fit in your handbag, it just might not be practical or wise to bring your four-legged friend everywhere you go. What does that mean?

Do: Bring your dog to dog-friendly spaces. For city dwellers, the Frenchtown and Shaw dog parks make for great dog-etiquettespots to get out and socialize. If you’re not a member, St. Louis is lucky to have many beautiful and spacious parks that make for great walks. I’ve never met a dog who will turn down a walk through Tower Grove Park!

Don’t: Take your dog to big parades, events or festivals. Parades and concerts can be a lot of fun for your whole family, but maybe not your dog. All the noise, congestion and commotion can get seriously overwhelming — not to mention your dog could get stepped on or tripped over. That means Rufus probably can’t check out Bret Michaels at this year’s Fair St. Louis. Sorry.

Do: Plan ahead. You think St. Louis summers get hot? So does your dog! If you plan on being out and about for a few hours, don’t forget a bowl and some water. And maybe a few poop bags, too.

Don’t: Make your dog an accessory. If it were up to me, I might just bring my sheltie everywhere I go. Unfortunately, I’m not sure all of our friends would find us to be the most polite guests. Before visiting your favorite patio spot or best friend’s house, try asking first if it’s okay to bring your dog.

What are some dog-friendly events coming up in your neighborhood? Let us know so we can add them to our calendar!

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