There should be more dog parks in Bradenton, Florida… but here we are, a county that is 741 square miles, with a city population of 690,000 people… and only two dog parks. I’ll take them of course, because two are better than none, and I’ll hope that the city has future plans to create more.
I love dogs, and I believe it helps them physically and mentally when they can get outside and play and interact with other dogs, and learn how to be in a pack setting that isn’t human. This interaction is healthy and it gives them a chance to be a dog, and not just someone’s pet.
And believe it or not, dogs that are healthy and well adjusted, love being around and playing with other dogs, so give your pooch an opportunity to get out, get some exercise and make new friends. You’ll be surprised to see that dogs can make friends just like humans can.
The two parks are open 7 days a week, so you can easily schedule time for Saturdays and Sundays. If that doesn’t suit you, then take advantage of the parks being open from sunrise to sunset, except on Thursday, when they are closed to do maintenance. This is just a few hours from 7am to 10 am, and they also close the last Friday of each month, from 2 pm to until the parks close.
Happy Tails Canine Park
G. T. Bray Park
51st Street West
Bradenton, FL 34209
The dog park at G. T. Bray is called the Happy Tails Canine Park. This park is built on 3 acres and considered to be an off the leash, fenced in dog park. It is located at the G. T. Bray Park in West Bradenton, but is on the northeast corner near 51st Street. G. T. Bray is on 33rd Avenue Drive West and 51st Street West intersects it.
This doggy park offers an enclosed area that is for small, fragile and older dogs only. There is a drinking fountain and free bags for your dog’s waste.
Dog Leg Park
7550 69th Street East
Palmetto, FL 34221
Dog Leg Park is located at Buffalo Creek, which off of 69th Street East or Erie Road, in Palmetto, Florida. This park is also built on 3 acres, and is an off the leash dog park that has a covered shelter and trees.
They offer a separate fenced in area for the small, fragile and older dogs, drinking fountains and free bags for your dog’s waste.
Rules To Remember About These Dog Parks:
• When you bring your dog to the park, you cannot bring any alcoholic beverages. They are not allowed inside county parks, so leave your beer at home.
• You can not bring human food into the dog park either.
• Remember not to feed the squirrels when you enter the park. This is also prohibited.
• The main purpose of this park is to provide a place for your dogs to come and socialize with other dogs, and enjoy themselves.
• Your dog should be fairly trained before mixing with other dogs at the park. If your dog is in any way aggressive, they will not be allowed to stay in the park.
• Before your dog can come to any of the parks, they must be up to date on their rabies vaccination and they must have their current dog tag.
• All dogs that enter and exit the park has to be leashed.
• When your dog is inside the park, you must remove their leash. No dogs can remain leased once they are inside the fence.
• You also need to remember that your dog cannot wear a choke collar inside the park. They are prohibited.
• When you and your dog enter the park, you or whoever is responsible for your dog, has to remain there, in sight of your dog, with the dog leash, until play time is over.
• It is suggested that for the safety of any small dogs, fragile or older dogs, you use the small dog area of the park.
• You must also be able to control your dog by voice commands.
• As usual, any dog feces has to be picked up by you, and disposed of properly.
• Pay attention to your dog. If they dig a hole, you have to fill it immediately. You are responsible for doing this, not the park personnel.
• Your children can also come to the dog parks with you and accompany your dog in the play area, but know that you are responsible for your child, and must be under an adult’s supervision at all times.
• The same goes for your dog. You are responsible for your dog and any of their behavior habits or problems inside the park.
• Remember that there is no personnel in attendance or on duty at either dog park.
• Any and all special events you want to plan, need to go through the Parks and Recreation Department first.
• Be warned that Manatee County is not responsible for any injuries to your dog, you or any one else visiting the park. You are solely responsible and visit the park at your own risk.
I seriously hope that Manatee County has plans for future dog parks. It would be lovely not having to travel so far just to find playmates for your dog. I believe this is the reason a lot of people don’t bother going. G. T. Bray is in West Bradenton, and very convenient for those that live in West Bradenton, but what about the people who live in East Bradenton?
Well, this completes Dog Parks in Bradenton, Florida. Even though there are only two parks, I sincerely hope you get out and use them, and give your dog a chance to be the dog he or she is.