Many dogs don’t do well at public off-leash dog parks, yet still need the opportunity to run about and play in new places and spaces for their mental and physical health and well-being. Fortunately, SniffSpace is a new online directory of safe, dog friendly private dog parks and play spaces that are available to rent by the hour around Australia.
As a dog behavoiurist and the owner of an anxious rescue dog, Vindi, I know that taking him to a dog park or busy public spaces where he is in close proximity to other dogs, or where other dogs off-leash may run up to him, can trigger a fear-based aggression response in him.
Why private dog parks and spaces are important for anxious dogs
Barking, lunging or even going to bite another dog or stranger is a very common response for many anxious dogs, and unfortunately I see it being reinforced over and over again as owners continue to put their dogs in situations that they should not be in, by taking them out to dog parks and other busy areas. You can read more about understanding aggression in dogs HERE.
These anxious and fear-aggressive dogs are then constantly being pushed over their threshold, which is the point they start to feel anxious or fearful and react in a negative way, such as hiding or running away from the other dog or, on the flip side, moving to attack the ‘trigger’ that is invading their critical distance.
The more they practise these negative responses the worse it gets, so having the option to hire a private dog park or yard space where they can have a stress-free off-leash exercise and play experience is a great option for anxious or reactive dogs.
Connect with local hosts
SniffSpace is an easy to use online system that helps dog owners connect with hosts in their area, to ﬁnd a play space or private dog park that works for them and their dogs.
The great thing for people that have a yard or space that they can hire out is that they can earn extra income whilst contributing to their beloved dog community and help aid the mental health and wellbeing of other people’s dogs.
Earn flexible income by becoming a host
Free to list, hosts are able to control availability of their space in line with their busy schedules, whilst supplementing their income and making any spare yard space work for them.
In an Australian ﬁrst, SniffSpace also provides hosts with $20 million dollars’ worth of public liability insurance, free of charge, ensuring hosts are professionally covered and worry-free.
Created by digital disrupter and dog lover Tracey Horey in 2021, SniffSpace utilises easy to use technology and innovation to provide a solution to the dog loving community, bringing hosts and dog owners together in a safe and friendly environment, including large private back yards or private dog parks and other spaces.
Jenny from Paws Day Out in Agnes Bank, New South Wales is a host and shares her views, “As a long-term dog lover with loads of space, I’m delighted to be able to share my property with dog owners who need a safe and friendly environment for their anxious and shy dogs. I’m providing a service to the community whilst using the extra income to reinvest in my property. The back end is easy to use and it’s a win-win all round.”
SniffSpace is averaging 350 bookings a month via the online system with over 3500 dog owners waiting for space or private dog parks in their area, so the need for additional hosts is great. The only business of its kind in Australia, some hosts are earning between $1500 – $2000 extra income per month, making SniffSpace a compelling and accessible business opportunity.
If you have a large back yard or private dog park or space you can lease out by the hour, learn more about becoming a host HERE.
Benefits for dog owners and dog walkers
Whether you have a rescue dog with a tough history, a dog that suffers from anxiety, or has experienced a lack of socialisation, SniffSpace is the perfect solution for you to help you regain conﬁdence and enjoy quality time with your pet.
It is also a great way to work on obedience training, or even set up an agility course for dogs needing an outlet for excess energy or for working dog breeds that benefit greatly from agility training, away from other distractions.
Head to the Sniffspace website for more information and help reduce stress and anxiety in both you and your dog by finding a private dog park or space near you.
For more tips on training a reactive dog click HERE.
Lara Shannon is a certified dog behaviourist and trainer, pet food nutrition specialist, Executive Producer and Host of Pooches at Play on Channel 10 and editor of Poochesatplay.com. Lara also runs her own dog training business in Melbourne’s Bayside area and is the Author of World of Dogs and Eat, Play, Love Your Dog