While visiting my parents in Oregon, I was out running when I saw a bucket filled with water suspended under a sign that read “Doggy Watering Hole.” I was charmed by this thoughtful, neighborly gesture at the side of the road. This sort of community-mindedness is something to be celebrated.
Now I realize that there will be folks who think, “Ew, what a great way to share germs.” To this I say 1) I ran by the doggy watering hole nearly every day for close to two weeks to check it out and the water always looked fresh and clean, so it is clearly being changed frequently, and 2) It sure beats having the dogs drink out of nasty puddles in the street that contain fuel products or other hazards.
I’m in favor of people carrying plenty of water for their dogs when they are out and about, but this watering hole is such a great idea as a way to help people and dogs who get caught out without quite enough for whatever reason. Have you seen anything like this in your neighborhood?
Karen B. London, PhD, is a Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist and Certified Professional Dog Trainer whose clinical work over the last 17 years has focused on the evaluation and treatment of serious behavioral problems in dogs, especially aggression. Karen has been writing the behavior column for The Bark since 2012 and wrote The Bark’s training column and various other articles for eight years before that. She is an adjunct professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Northern Arizona University, and teaches a tropical field biology course in Costa Rica. Karen writes an animal column, The London Zoo, which appear in The Arizona Daily Sun and is the author of five books on canine training and behavior. She is working on her next book, which she expects to be published in 2017.