Bow Wow Beach Dog Park (at Silver Springs Park) - Stow

5027 Stow Rd
Stow, OH
Operating Hours:
8am - 8pm
Days Closed:
Thursdays until 11am and when the lake is freezing (December - Spring time)
Park Size:
7.5 acres
Type of Park:
Other Notes:

Opened June 2007. This dog park includes a three acre lake with a beach, a dog washing area, and a separate small dog area (35 lb and under). Young children are restricted from entering the dog park. This dog park is rated in the top five must see dog parks nationally by Pedigree in 2008.

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germanshepheart's picture
Dog got sick both times, like other posters' pets did

We took our dog to BWB twice, at least a month apart, and both times he ended up with severe vomiting and diarrhea after swimming there, as well as a cough. I see below that other people's pets have experienced the same problem. There is some type of contaminant in the water which is not being eradicated by whatever maintenance and cleaning efforts are in use. The second time we were there we witnessed an owner allowing her dog to have diarrhea right in the water where dogs are swimming, who did nothing but laugh about it - so perhaps the unclean water is not much of a surprise. It is a shame because other than that this place is fabulous, most of the people are friendly and of course "dog people," the washup facilities are great and the property is lovely. There is no place we've found yet in reasonable driving distance that compares. Our pup loved it and it's a shame we can't go back unless the water issue is addressed. As another poster suggested, I wouldn't doubt that people would be willing to pay an entry fee in order to have a safe place for their dogs to swim. Please address this, Stow & Bow Wow Beach!

gretchen mom's picture
bow bow dog beach in stow ohio

I just took my rottie to the park for the first time. She had a very good time and we will be going back often. Everyone there seemed very nice. Looking forward to the next visit.

scm58's picture
Warning!!! Keep Dogs Away!!!

Warning!!! I had taken my two Australian Cattle dogs (9 and 11 years old and in good health) to this park for this first time a month ago. They had a great time playing and swimming in the water. They developed a cough a few days later, and within a week both of my dogs died!!! I am heart broken and I want to warn people that there is something going around at the park. The vet that took my care of my babies when they passed said that they had contracted a virus that turned into pneumonia within a week and even with aggressive antibiotic treatment they both went a week after going to this park. Please people be carful I done want this to happen to another dog or family! My dog started off as my 4H project and became my best friend. Nothing can fill the hole in my heart.

backstroker89's picture
i have two dogs a 25 pound

i have two dogs a 25 pound puggle and a 12 pound chihuahua mix. I take them to bow wow beach 2 or 3 times a week weather depending and they love it. whenever i tell them go to the park they perk up and get super excited and when we pull into the parking lot they start going crazy with excitement. I live in a duplex rental and i do not have a fenced in backyard so bow wow beach is a perfect place to let my dogs off the leash and to get to run around and blow off steam and socialize with other dogs. i really only have had one incident where an owner brought there very aggressive big dog to the park and it came after my 25 pound puggle and took him to the ground and wouldn't get off of him. i ran over to get his dog off of my dog and my dog kept screaming and when he was finally able to get free he jumped up into my arms. he ended up being ok and bounced back quickly and had fun the rest of the time there. the point with that story is that people with aggressive dogs shouldn't bring them to the park its not fair for others. there are also issues with people bringing there young children and that is just a no no. no matter how big or small the dog is it can still be very strong and if they are playing and chasing another dog they could accidently run into the kid and hurt him/her. Over all the park is very nice and its a relaxing and fun place to go as long as the owners keep an eye on there dogs and don't bring them there if aggressive and they keep there small children at home.

jrene2's picture
bow wow beach

If you have a smaller dog that is used to big dogs don't even try to walk around the beach. I have two small dogs that get along with all size dogs. Last time we went we decided to walk our dogs which were on leashes and right by our sides around the beach. A huge St.. Bernard grabbed up one of them and started shakiing her like a ragdoll. My dog was screaming and I finally was able to get her away. The owner of the St Bernard finally came and said oh he wont hurt her he just is playing. Did he not see what was going on. No aplolgy or nothing. As we walked away we heard him say that was the second time he did that today. Hello So we go to the fenced in area for small dogs to calm ours down and we see a rotweiler across the lake attack another big dog No more Bow wow beach for us. If their dog is aggressive don't take them to the dog park

happy dog owner's picture
thank you city of stow

This park is an incredible place for our 4 legged friends to expend all their energy. This year the park has never run smoother. Cant wait till next season. Thank you once again

Xxhieixx's picture
Used to love it

Despite the title of this review my main issue is the owners and me disliking people so I still gave the park a 3 star. I used to LOVE taking my dog here. The owners were great. Mostly everyone watched their dogs and were generally friendly. However, the past few times I've went I've had people comment on my very submissive and overly friendly dog that he's being aggressive because he play growls. I had one couple try and get their dog away from mine just for the fact that he was play growling. My dog is 1 so he's still very much a puppy. He was playing with a dog his age and you could tell they were having fun chasing each other. After it looked like they were about to grab my dog (which would have freaked him out) I called him to me and get told "he's still a puppy" what does that mean? So is mine, they were just playing! Their dog was also bigger then mine.
Next time I go my dog starts playing with another dog around his age and their dog starts nipping at him and doing the herding play. Well my dog is a border collie so he's all for that. I could tell their dog was just playing but they didn't like it so they just kept yelling at their dog while doing nothing. So my dog starts playing back the same way and they FREAKED out. All of a sudden it was some HUGE deal. It was ok when their dog was doing it but not mine. So once again I had to stop my poor dog fr being a DOG and took him away.
I found someone else with two herding dogs and we started talking about it while our dogs played a little rough. Then her dog bites my dog on the lip. My dog immedietly acts submissive and tries to pull away but her dog wouldn't let go until she got him off. Now this was both of our faults for not noticing the signs but when I got home I noticed my dog had a little puncture wound and a tiny gash on his face.

Yeah he'll just be playing with the neighbors dog from now on. That and the keyser dog park which pretty much has nobody.

Petey's picture
Visit 5-20-12

Bow Wow Beach is the greatest place ...However there was a dog owner with his infant there and I saw hit another dog because the puppy jumped on his child THAT IS NOT SUPPOSE TO BE THERE!!!!!!!!Really It's a dog park NOT Kiddie land!!!!!Keep him at home!!!!!Other than that GREAT TIME

Galidah's picture
Contaminated Water

I would avoid this place at all costs. Ask your local Veterinary clinics what their opinion is of this place before making a decision on going there with your pet. I have been hearing that either the water is contaminated or it has been poisoned. An overwhelming amount of dogs are either having skin issues, sickness or even death just days or weeks after going to this park. My mother's dog came down with a skin condition days after going there. My wife is a VetTech at a local clinic and is seeing firsthand deaths that are speculated to be because of the contamination of the water. No one can say for sure that these deaths, illnesses or skin conditions are actually a result of the water until someone does a water test, but it is all very coincidental that it happens days after visiting this park.

careangel614's picture
great park!

great place for dogs of all sizes to run, play. and even swim. the only problem that is happening more and more this year is people bringing small children into the park. I have even seen them with beach toys, digging in the sand. not safe for the kids. dogs will run into people when they are chasing each other and having fun, so wear clothes you don't mind getting sandy, muddy dog on.

pennyschaffter's picture
So Nice!!

Today was our first time at the park. We took our two Greyhounds to the dog park today and they had a blast!! I can't wait to bring them back again. It was so clean and neat! I had no idea there was such a cool place around this area for dogs!

snowbanshee's picture
i love this dog park

i love this dog park

snowbanshee's picture
pets places

We have 2 big dogs and that can be a hassle at some places. But if you Google pet friendly hotels you will find a site that has a listing for all 50 states and choose from. There are even retreats and a lighthouse that you can find that are dog friendly.

EDITOR COMMENT: We also list dog friendly hotels. Here is a list of dog friendly places in Stow:

tdzimmer87's picture
Great park

I just had my black Lab, Greta, to the park last week. She absolutely loved it. It was her first time to experience swimming and I couldn't keep her out of the water. I travelled 120 miles (2 1/2 hrs) and spent one night there to give my dog this opportunity. I wish there would be some information posted either on the website or at the park about pet-friendly hotels. I ended up at the Super8 in Stow/Kent. It was great but I wish it would have been closer to the park.
I definitely will return. I do think there should be a fee of some sort. The water was not clean. Everyone has to admit that. But the dogs have so much fun that it is overlooked. I saw something about possible putting a sprayer/sprinkler in the lake to airate it. That may help. But it's going to need funding. I don't know how they keep it up now. They are doing a great job!!! Thank you so much from myself and Greta!

EDITOR COMMENT: We have started adding dog friendly lodging and restaurants on our website. Check out Stow:

Jenny C's picture
greatest dog park ever!!!

it's wonderful worth the drive for clevelanders

v2the dogs's picture
regarding the below post " my dog gets sick"

sorry to hear that. I hope all is well with your puppy now. I agree about the lake water.

snoangel310's picture
My dog gets sick.

I recently had a Golden Retriever that was sick and had to have her put down. Of course she was older and we believe she had liver disease, but the same symptoms happened to my 5 month old puppy I took to BWB to swim and had to rush her to the vet for the vomiting and diarrhea. The common denominator with the two dogs is the water at BWB. After this last very expensive vet visit (hospital stay overnight). I will not be taking my dogs to BWB anymore. It's a shame because the dogs love it. I wouldn't even mind if there was a membership fee if I knew for sure the water was safer.

v2the dogs's picture
nice park

I've been to this park 5 times now. We haven't seen any dog fighting but we did witness a strong finger pointing argument between two different dog owners over dicipline. It seems like some pet owners assume that once your dog is thru both gates and safely inside the park,its ok to leave them roam unsupervised. While our dog is off his leash, we are with in a short distance from him at all times. I've seen volunteers there twice not including the birthday party and that was a good thing to see. We haven't had trouble with our dog being sick from the water but I must say that it is a concern about the water quality. It is very difficult to ensure that I've gotten all of our dogs poop out of the shallow water when he on two occasions decided this was where he was going to do his number two. Maybe it would be a good idea for the city to do a water quality test and post it at the entrance gates like the beaches do on Lake Erie. I'd be willing to pay a small fee if it means insuring that the water is safe for our four legged kids to swim in.

cuteby95's picture

Just a quick comment to the person complaining about complaining. Well, yes, it's a free park, but I would want to know if the water is contaminated or not or people's dogs getting sick or just plain, old bad owners. There are plenty of them out there who shouldn't even be allowed to have a dog. I have never been to the dog park in stow, just reading the reviews now about it. I have a four month old puppy and still plan on taking her, just want to know what I'm getting into. it's a nice balance between good reviews and bad and helps keep the general public informed based on people's opinions.

So people who complain about complaining, please stop.

oh, and also you don't need chemicals to clean the water, using charcoal filters and other such filters can do the same thing.

linnabinna's picture
An employee at my vet's

An employee at my vet's office told me about this park. She takes her dogs there all the time and loves it. I have been looking for a safe place to take my dog where he can get in the water and this sounded like a great solution. Even though he weighs over 100lbs, I didn't want his first water experience to be in a river current.

The park is nice for a place torn up by happy dogs and taken care of by volunteers. They do a good job. There is sand around it and a trail that circles the pond. Your dog can be off leash, a rare treat. It was a relaxing, fun experience for both of us.

However, after reading through most of these reviews, I realize my dog got sick from being there. He drank the water twice. He has Addison's disease...he stopped eating several days ago, then the diarrhea began. I thought these symptoms were Addison's related and now, I'm realizing he's more than likely got an intestinal issue from that water. We had been there approximately 7 days before his symptoms began.

This park is a great concept but we won't be back. If the water can't be maintained at a safe level then what's the point? Considering the other near by water spots, I assumed this was a spring fed pond allowing for a reasonable amount of water exchange. What a shame.

naplesa's picture
Aggressive dogs and Dumb Owners

I have been to several dog parks all over northeast Ohio. I own two whippets of adult age. They both attend doggy daycare two to three times a week & are extremely social, well rounded dogs. My husband and I were at this park no more than 4 minutes, when a large 100 lbs+ dog approached my male whippet and began chasing him, which seems normal, right? Yes, until the dog started snapping at my dog's hind quarters. LUCKILY whippets are extremely fast, and as my dog yelped and yelped, he proceeded to run away from the dog. What made this whole situation terrible was the owner. I yelled at him to get control of his dog & he told me his dog wouldn't hurt mine. Yeah.. okay buddy! The guy then tells my husband he's only owned the dog for about a month. Who brings a dog of that size to a public dog park??
Needless to say, we left promptly & we will NEVER return to this park again.

SLOOZEN76's picture

Does anyone know if they test the water quality? I would like to know before taking my dog and allowing her in the water. Thank you.

Connie A Gerhart's picture
I totally agree with your

I totally agree with your proposal for a small yearly fee and proof of shots. I think this would avoid alot of sick animals and provide employment for individuals. As we know in today's economy, we all need the extra help. Keep pushing for this, there are alot of us behind you for this proposal. With someone monitoring the park, not only will your dog be safe from diseases but also agressive dogs. If someone was there, they could monitor these animals a bit better and advise a pet owner if their dog is being too agressive and ask them to leave the park before someone gets hurt. I feel this would enable the community to feel safe when taking their pets to this park.

Connie A Gerhart's picture
Children at Bow Wow Beach

Usually Bow Wow Beach is a great place to take my dog byt today was a bit different. Now that school is out and parents are bringing their children to the park, be careful. The pets are being very protective over the children in their family. It is posted no child under a certain height, parents need to abide by this for safety reasons. My puppy was doing her usual running around and went up to a family with 2 small children and a rather big dog. This dog proceeded to go after mine, until another man who was there stepped in between. My puppy was hiding between my legs and this other dog proceeded to go after her neck. The owner says "Is that a girl?" Who cares, what she is....don't bring your dog around others if it is that protective over you and the children! Small children need to stay home and let the owners who can handle their pets take them to the water park. After this, my pet and I left the park immediately. The other party with the agressive dog, continued to walk around the lake with her children....HELLO Wake up, dogs are protective when it comes to the children! Just a word of advice to others, if you see small children there with their pets, go the other way or just leave. this may help to avoid a situation like mine. Owners need to be more aware of their animals....ruins all the fun for those who really want to be there!

brosolowski's picture
March 19, 2011 visit to dog park

I had read about the park in one of my dog magazines and wanted to visit it. I used to swim there as a kid growing up. My sister and I took our rescue dogs on a Saturday morning. It was the first visit to a dog park for both of them, and was a good experience. They are both medium sized dogs, so we went in the large dog area and walked around the lake twice, then sat and watched for a while. The only annoying dog was a little terrier that approached our dogs at a dead run. I can see why he wasn't in the little dog area - so much energy! However, there was no aggression shown by any dog we saw, just lots of running and leaping around. Yes, there was barking and a bit of growl-talk, but that was just setting some boundaries. If people stay out of it, 90% of the time the dogs settle things in 3 seconds or less. You just have to pay attention in case something escalates.

Our dogs weren't interested in the water, which was good because we didn't take towels.

I think any dog park is an "enter at your own risk" adventure. In our hometown, I can take two dogs at a time, and we often open up the dividing gate between the little and big dog sections. I know my little dogs may get bowled over in a "run-by" but they get up and chase the rest without any problem. I've never had a dog get sick yet.

We made sure our dogs had their rabies tags on. I was a little concerned that I'd left the shot records at home, but no one asked to see anything.

I think the idea of paying a small membership fee to use the park is a great idea. There would be an administrative position for someone, perhaps retired who loves dogs, to keep track of shot records and payments. It would be a lot more fun than being a WalMart greeter!

JohnRichards's picture
Park is OK

I've been to this park many times and from my experiences I can say there are strong and weak points with Bow Wow Beach.

Strong points:
-Ample play area and variety of dogs for high energy pets to play, interact, and swim.
-Area to hose your dog off and provide fresh drinking water.
-Plenty of tennis balls laying around to have your dog fetch.
-Lots of room to run and play.
-Plastic bags on site for poop.
-Most people pick up after their pets.

Weak Points:
-Don't bring dog's that haven't had ALL their puppy shots, as they will more than likely end up with worms if they don't already have them.
-Aggressive dogs that owners are in denial about or do little to monitor(dog's playing, humping, sniffing rear-end's, etc. is NOT aggression)
-Owners not stopping their dog's from aggressive behavior
-Water in lake isn't safe to drink (I watch my dog carefully,when he's thirsty, I walk him on his leash to the water bowl and make sure he drinks from that)
-I've had to correct other people's dogs on a couple occasions because THE OWNER DIDN'T KNOW HOW TOO!!
-Small dogs that are aggressive are VERY annoying (had one follow us literally around the lake, had to pick mine up off the ground at one point and yell at it as it was biting mine very hard on the legs, and barring teeth. This wasn't playful in nature. Almost got in a fight with the owner, who finally grabbed his dog after I intervened)
-Large 100+ pound dogs are an issue as well as it's easy to tell when the owners are unable or unaware of how to control their pets.

So, my best advice is to closely monitor your pet and others. Roughhousing between dogs is normal. If YOU project fear to your dog, or have an overly insecure dog (tail tucked up under belly, or a dominant dog tail up) YOU might make matters worse...just observe calmly. Unless the dog is screaming from a bite, they know how to protect and play amongst themselves. Mine is dominant, but not aggressive, but I watch him like a hawk just in case.

arallen2624's picture

For all you people that complain about a FREE park, you should be ashamed. You could have no park at all or live in another country where they would never even think about a dog park. If you dont like it dont take your dog there but do ruin it for people who really enjoy it. Do you think if you go to a lake or pond that is public, that you fish in, you think the wildlife is clean that drink out of that? Do you think they dont poop in ths lake? Ahhh thats right your probally the type of person that lets your dog just go in your nice clean swimming pool. Guess what the chemicals you put in your pool NOT GOOD FOR ANIMALS!!!!! SO let it go, I have been taking my dog there for three years and he is healthy as can be.

Sylva_Ansuz's picture
Two Paws Up!

It saddens me to read all these negative views on my favorite dog park. I would rather my dog have a life of fun, exploration, and diverse experiences than a life shut away from every conceivable germ. We go to Bow Wow Beach every few weeks (which varies depending on our schedule, but we were going twice a week in the late summer) and my dog has never gotten sick. He's actually lost all of his excess weight (and is in great shape!) due to this and other rigorous exercise opportunities we try to present him with. He loves to roughhouse and run with other dogs. For him, that is The Life! So far the only problem I've encountered there are people who object to my young dog's attempts to play with their dogs. Nonetheless, this dog park is the most peaceful and least adversarial dog park we've visited, due to its large size and the fun water feature. If dogs aren't getting along, you can just walk to the other side of the park where more suitable pals can be found. Also, my dog did contract whipworms once from a different dog park (not this one) and I switched him to a different heartworm pill, Interceptor, which prevents pretty much any kind of worm infestation other than tapeworm, I believe. I'd rather just periodically test him for worms instead of keeping him confined in the yard or on a leash all the time. That's just not an option for energetic, high energy dogs who want to run, at least not in my opinion.

stowresident's picture

Train your dogs not to drink the water they swim in? Are you crazy?

The water is infested with bacteria because the dogs poop in it all day, everyday. Would you let your dog drink from a water bowl that a dog just pooped in?

The city of Stow hates this park and wants to close it. We can only hope for the good of the dogs.

Chrissypoo's picture

Recently there has been a war going on at the dog park and it isn't just the dogs constantly fighting.

A few people said they thought the park needed some improvements to make it safe and the Volunteeers went after those people with both barrels blasting.

Even the vet on the dog parks blog says the water isn't safe and dogs shouldn't drink it!

You want a very sick dog and huge Vet bills, go to this park. Your dog surely won't thank you for it.

stowresident's picture

This place is the worst place you can take your dog. The water is NEVER tested for disease, there are MANY aggressive dogs there. A puppy was killed there and that is true!

Whatever you do don't give the Volunteer group there a cent. They say they are a nonprofit but aren't registered as anything with the state. kaching, kaching in someone's pocket because there is no accountability there at all.

A responsible dog owner would NEVER take their dog to this cesspool.

bennybrowneyes's picture
Pros and Cons

I take my dog Ben to BWB a couple times a week. There has been much debate latetly as to the safety of the park.

The PROS: BWB is a free recreational bonanza for your dog! There are over 7 acres of of securely fenced land for your dog to roam. There is also a 3 acre lake for swimming and romping. For those interested in some very beginner K9 Sports, there is also a small agility course. Mornings and evenings are the best time to go, if you like a quiet, more relaxed atmosphere. If your dog enjoys playing with a large variety of dogs, then the weekend mid-day is for you!

The Cons: Occasionally you'll run into a human with an attitude or someone who honestly has no idea about dogs and dog body language. You might also have the occasional dog that simply doesn't belong in a social dog park. Heck, my neighborhood isn't much different. I don't like some of my neighbors, but I don't attack or harass them, I just ignore them and walk the other way. Frankly the biggest CON is that the park isn't open year round. The park is close by December 1 of each year and doesn't open again until the spring (around mid-March).

All-in-all this is an AWESOME place to take your best buddy.

tangeDOGS's picture
bow wow beach

i believe bow wow beach is a great place for your dog to interact with other dogs and have a social life with other people and dogs. however, i have heard many complaints about the lake and dogs drinking the lake water, there dogs, thats just waht they do.i do believe that a dog can be trained not to drink water, despite the fact of its natural instinct or thirst.

Callie's picture

This park is a great place to take your dog if let your dog drink out of the toilet BEFORE you flush! Dogs poop in the lake all day everyday and dogs drink the water. The volunteers that work at the park think its funny. The city of Stow has a "Use at your won risk' policy and NEVER, I mean never test the water for anything. If you don't belie me, call the city yourself and see for yourself. (330) 689-5100

Great place to take your dog to get sick and 'run free' before hand! Terrible and dangerous dog park!

lynda's picture

I just cannot believe the number of complaints here for a public dog park. We ought to be thanking god for the privelege of having such a wonderful place to bring our dogs to. Surely, most people can abide by a few simple rules to keep this dog paradise going. We should not over-analyze dog behavior and get crazy about who took what toy etc. Let's be mature or simply don't go.

yooper's picture
A great place for dogs and humans alike

This past summer I had the great fortune to visit the park with my 8 year old black lab Duke. I must admit that we both loved the area and the people. Hopefully next summer we will be able to visit bow wow beach again.

Ja Ling's picture

We love the dog park...we are so fortunate to have this wonderful park near us. The water is a boom to all the dogs and a feature lacking in most other dog parks. I have to recall once when there was this sweet Boarder Collie at the park. She was swimming,hitting the water with her paws, and barking with such unabandoned glee. I don't think I have ever seen a happier dog. Her owners had quite a time getting her out of the water!

This is the way it is for most dogs at the park...pure joy and happiness.

I have seen very few instances of any problems with the dogs...and when I have, they have been handled by the owners.

The only problem I have is that at the entrance to the park is a sign which states "you must be this tall" to enter. Unfortunately, people bring small children into the park. I have seem several instances where the bigger dogs are running and playing and simply plow over these little kids. So far, the children I have seen have not been hurt...but it is bound to happen, and unfortunately, someone will blame the dogs. I wish there was some supervision to keep small children out of the park. It is for their own safety.

I kind of like the idea of a membership. If it isn't too cost prohibitive, I would be willing to pay a small fee so that we could be certain all dogs that enter the park are, at the very least, properly vaccinated. Otherwise, this park gets a big thumbs up from us!

Lousmama's picture
Kudos to good pup parents

My 1+ year old Shepherd/Border Collie mix and his sister love to visit Bow Wow beach! KUDOS to the volunteers who keep it clean and open for our enjoyment!! For the most part I have seen that pup-parents are responsible, social and observant. However, for those that do not clean up after their pet, feel it is okay to hit their pet, and disregard the need to observe their pet...SHAME on you. It is NEVER okay to hit a dog, not with a leash, not with your hand, or a stick. It IS ok to be a responsible and caring pup-parent who conditions their companion to respond to commands and to properly train against undesirable behavior at home, so that both pup and parents are comfortable. I have witnessed twice in the last month, two separate pup-parents hitting their dogs as a disciplinary action. This is not okay, and thankfully, after the last occurance a gentleman confronted the woman and her behavior. This was uncomfortable for all involved.
There is a display area by the rinse stations, and patio area where I think it would be VERY helpful to have local non-emergency authority phone numbers posted for reference to those of us who are concerned for the welfare of mistreated pups.

Volunteers, keep up the good work....thank you for all you do...and God bless.

Conard10's picture
Great park, but wish the rules were enforced...

We've taken our 5 month old lab to Bow Wow Beach the last couple weekends and had a wonderful time. The size of the park and the lake are unlike any dog park in Ohio.
Luckily we did not have any major problems, but if we weren't paying very close attention I could see bad things happening!

The park itself is wonderful, I just wish that people were more responsible and followed the park rules!

I do have several concerns regarding the park rules/regulations not being enforced.
-Several people pay no attention to their dogs. They sit down and let there dogs roam around. These are also the people that tend to bring the more aggressive dogs to the park.
-Lots of children under 48 inches walking around. We saw a 3 year old almost get plowed over by a group of running dogs. The parents got all upset. Why let a 3 year old walk around??
-We saw several adult male dogs that were not nuetered.
-Probably my biggest concern is my dog's health. The rules say that dogs must be vaccinated, but how many really are?? With a lake this becomes a major concern because dogs go potty in the lake and then they swim it. Of course they are going to swallow some water and diseases can spread quickly this way.

Like other's have said, this could all be fixed (or at least improved) if this was a membership only park. Everyone should be required to pay a membership fee. In order to get a membership you should be required to show proof of vaccination and spay/neuter. And, possibly have your dog temperment tested. They could either issue key cards used to get into the park, or use the membership money to hire someone to monitor the gate.

Of course people will complain about paying, but too bad! This is such a nice park that I would think they could charge a pretty high annual membership. With this money they could hire someone to supervise.

Maybe it's just us, but we have a hard time "scolding" another adult for not following the rules. If something would affect us personally, like a dog attacking our dog, we would definetely say something. But I don't feel like instigating an argument by telling someone to remove their 3 year old from the park or get their dog fixed.

I think the volunteers for the park are doing a wonderful thing. Countless dogs, including our own, have an amazing time at the beach.

There will always be people that don't follow the rules, which is why this should be a membership only park. I think responsible owners would be more than willing to pay for their dogs happiness and safety.

robere ellette's picture
great place

if something happens you will foot the bill

robere ellette's picture
boo boos at bow wow

Some of the regulars here seem confused about what defines "aggressive dog". if a dog runs down another smaller or older dog and pins it to the ground that's generally condoned as just playing. if you intervene on your dog or some other dogs behalf you're likely to be labeled a cry baby and told not to return. dogs who are compelled to over power and bite others are not suitable to run loose in a park as this. it is a beautiful site it's a shame that some of the regulars like to push their idea of proper behavior on others. the more times you visit the odds of seeing or being involved in an incident increase disproportionately. perhaps a purchased use card could fund a "lifeguard" for this beach before it goes under. we have no park like this in my country. to bad a few squatters are allowed to decide whats right here in yours.

jules587's picture
Great Place

I have been there about 3 times now with my Lab/Chow mix. I have had a great and positive experience every single time.

A. Dog's play, and by play I mean that they rough house a little. Just keep an eye on them and make sure it doesn't get out of hand, and make sure they are evenly matched (what I have observed is dogs of the same size play with each other) A good way to gauge play vs fight is: If he is wagging his tail, he is playing. If his ears are pinned back and his tail is between his legs, get him out! Generally if the hair on his back stands on end, that can be considered aggression, or dominance. My dog does that, but he pairs it with wagging his tail and has yet to bite anyone (or any dog) *knock on wood.
B. Just keep close to your dog and make sure he is doing ok. If he/she becomes aggressive, apologize and leave. The dog park is not the place for him/her.
C. There are always little dogs in the big dog area..the little dog owners must realize that there are big dogs, so if you are uncomfortable there is an "UNSECURED" water area for them.
D. The UNSECURED water area for the little ones says on the sign that it isn't secured. Sorry, but just keep an eye on your dog and everything should be ok
E. Probably not a good idea to keep a dog on a leash, all the other dogs will gang up on him/her.
F. Dogs occasionally don†t listen to their owners, especially in circumstances such as this, where there are a lot of dogs and a lot of activity. Keep that in mind. This is why everyone should follow the rules: Keep updated on shots, remove aggressive dogs, and keep an eye on your dog.
PLEASE don†t ruin it for the rest of us. This dog park is a blast, and my dog is very fond of it. I would be heartbroken if something happened to him because someone else was negligent. I†m sure everyone else feels the same way

If all else fails, put yourself in the other dog owner†s shoes†¦

benedetto's picture
A shared positive experience

Our third time there and always a good experience. We have 2 medium to large dogs, a lab mix that looks frightening to some but is harmless and adapts to other dogs well, and another who's just a big oaf who barks too much. Either way, if we as owners just do the human thing and are vigilant with our own dogs, allow them to interact but keep an eye on them should something happen, pick up after them, and trust each other to do the right thing, we should all get along fine. Let's keep it safe and enjoyable for everyone and not just a place to dump your dog for a while.
Come to think about it, isn't it just like bringing your children to a park or day care to play with each other.
A great place, and a great time. Thank you, Stow - Bravo! Thank you to everyone who keeps it that way.

LabLover89's picture
Squeaky Toy's at Bow Wow

That is very childish, after all isn't the point in bringing your dog/s to a dog park is to interact with other dogs? Some people should not be allowed to bring their pets to a dog park if they can't get along well with other (humans or pets)

LabLover89's picture

Hello All, I heard about this dog park from a friend of mine and would really love to bring my Black Lab here because he loves to swim and interact with other dogs. He is very gentle with all dogs big and small but reading some of the comments on here I noticed some owners can bring their dogs even though they may not get along with all dogs. I don't want my baby to get attacked for trying to have fun. Are there any rules saying that a more aggressive must leave the park if there is any sign of biting or fighting with dogs? I'm sure my dog could hold his own being almost 90lbs but I don't want him to have to when he should be playing and having fun. Please contact me back at my email [email protected] before I decide to take my precious pup to the park.

kekepanter's picture
1st Time and possibly last :(

I've been so excited to take my 8lb yorkie to the beach. He is already very well socialized, so my main reason was for him to try out the water.
When we got there, my dog hung out in the Small Dog Area that was fenced in and ran around having a blast. Everytime, my dad and I wanted to take him to the water right in front of the Small Dog Area, there were 5-7 big dogs running around the area.
Being new, we didn't want to tell anyone to take them to the Big Dog Area, which is basically the rest of the entire lake and which tons of big dogs were playing.
So, we waited patiently until all the big dogs had left the Small Dog Beach area. I was so happy that my dog walked right into the water like it was second nature. Being that this is a dog who is afraid of his own shadow and very skittish with new things. No sooner was my dad taking off his leash, that a huge black dog came running at them like a vulture and went straight for my dog. I yelled and my dad scooped him up just in time. The owner who had just entered through the SMALL DOG AREA fence laughed and yelled, "I was thought he was gonna take you both out!"
Needless to say, my dog wouldn't go near the water after that and the big dog took over the area.
It was soooo disappointing that small dogs aren't even given a chance to have a place to go into the water. If the BIG DOG owners would just have some common courtesy and let SMALL DOGS have their own area to play, all would be well.
I AM WILLING TO VOLUNTEER my time to help get some big glaring signs posted right in front of the SMALL DOG BEACH AREA, that say SMALL DOGS ONLY! At least, I could then point at the sign when BIG DOG owners blatantly bring their dogs through the SMALL DOG GATE.

smudgy's picture
I agree...were you there

I agree...were you there later in the evening? My large dog was trying to play with a smaller dog near the water and the owner did not like it. So as I was trying to get her and this other dog cam flying in from behind me and attacked this little dog. and then all the other dogs swarmed in the water after this small dog. It happend so fast I tried to go after the dog that was biting. I have no idea if the owner was aware the dog was attcking another dog. I felt terrible, my big dopey dog trying to PLAY most likely enticed the other dogs. After it was all over the little dogs family's little kids were screaming and crying. The owners picked up the little dog and left. And two seconds later the same dog was attacking another dog. As soon as we walked into the park yesterday another large dog attacked mine. She is a big girl at 120lbs and growing. She ran away and can defend herself against a lage aggressive dog. I do not know why owners let the small dogs roam with the big ones? and another thing people need to always remember is when dogs are fighting loud SCREAMING eggs them on. I know it is hard to be calm but that screaming makes it worse. I know every time I walk in that place I am taking a risk that she may be injured. It is a dog park....and maybe I feel more secure since she is so large, I am not sure I would bring a little dog. It takes one hard bite to kill it. They need more enforcement to keep smaller dogs in that secure area. Let's just hope people use more common sense.

pamelove's picture
first timer

I took my dog for the first time today, she had a blast running around, swimming and playing with the other dogs. We will definitely be back.

beckie308's picture
Squeaky Toys at Bow Bow

I was at bow wow this past Saturday and was yelled at a man twice my size and his wife that had to wimers.. He threw his dog's squeaky toy into the lake and my adorable 1 yr old pup went out into the water to play along... What kind of person yells at another calling them a jerk (those weren't the words) and called my dog stupid b/c she wouldn't give back a $3 squeaky toy? I think that is pretty stupid.. People should NOT bring their own toys to a dog park when you know darn well that other dogs will attempt to play! I feel sad for a person like that... And to call a women a terrible name (cursing) in front of children?

jmazu72's picture
Lost Cell Phone

I lost my cell phone at the park on sunday july 4th. If you found it please contact me at 330-472-3919 or at [email protected]. Thanks!