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The Major League Baseball season has officially begun and in 2021, a limited number of fans are allowed back in-person at stadiums. What better way to celebrate than by planning to take your pup to the park to catch a game? Believe it or not, many of the MLB teams sponsor dog-friendly nights so that you can enjoy watching your favorite team with your furry friend right by your side. And aside from it just being plain old fun, it’s also a fantastic way to provide your dog with positive socialization and give him an opportunity to test out his obedience training and behavioral skills.

If you’d like to bring your dog with you to root, root, root for your home team, check out the list of teams below that have already confirmed they will be offering these awesome theme nights.

2021 Dog-Friendly Major League Baseball Games

Atlanta Braves: April 25

Cincinnati Reds: TBD

Kansas City Royals: April 14, May 18,

New York Mets: April 12, May 24, Sept 2

Pittsburgh Pirates: TBD

Seattle Mariners: TBD

St. Louis Cardinals: TBD

Washington Nationals: May 5, May 30, June 20, August 31, September 18

What to Expect

We caught up with a spokesperson from the Washington Nationals who expressed their excitement for the upcoming Pups in the Park nights this year.

“There’s nothing better than being able to combine Man’s Best Friend and America’s Pastime,” they explained. “Our fans love having the opportunity to bring their dogs to the ballpark and Pups in the Park is one of our most popular Theme Nights year in and year out.”

Nationals Park features a designated Pup Zone in the Family Picnic area and features pet sitters from the Human Rescue Alliance and Fetch! Pet Care. There’s also a special pregame parade taking place on the first dog-friendly night, so you can show off your furry fan before enjoying the game!

“We look forward to continuing this tradition and welcoming more four-legged fans to Nationals Park,” the spokesperson said.

Photo courtesy of the Washington Nationals Baseball Club

One way to set you and your dog up for success at one of these games is by utilizing AKC Canine Good Citizen (CGC) training. This program teaches good manners to dogs as well as responsible dog ownership to owners. By participating in CGC, your dog will learn how to accept friendly strangers, sit politely to be pet, how to walk through crowds, and more — all important lessons that will certainly come in handy at MLB games!

Should You Take Your Dog to a Baseball Game?

Yes, if your dog:

  • Is old enough to be around other dogs and people (at least 4 months of age)
  • Is up-to-date on all required vaccinations and old enough to be around other dogs and people (4+ months of age)
  • Is in relatively good health and can walk up and down several flights of stairs
  • Does well on-leash and is not reactive toward other dogs or humans
  • Does well with crowds, and loud noises such as fireworks and cheering

Probably not, if your dog:

  • Is unvaccinated or under four months of age
  • Is a senior dog that would have trouble navigating stairs and being outside for an extended period of time
  • Tends to get overheated
  • Has reactive tendencies toward other dogs or humans
  • Is exhibiting any signs of illness close to the day of the game such as cough, nasal discharge, lethargy, or diarrhea. These symptoms can be signs of potentially infectious illnesses and it would probably be best for your dog, as well as the other dogs in attendance, if they did not attend.
  • Has issues with loud noises (fireworks, loud music, sirens, etc. will occur before/during/after the game)

For more canine baseball fun, find out which baseball teams have their own dogs!

Related article: Is It Safe For Dogs to Drink Out Of Communal Water Bowls?
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