Bringing your dog to the national park

Please always keep dogs on a leash

In the forest and on the grounds of the national parks there are unfortunately no exceptions throughout the year: Dogs have to be kept on a leash, and of course this isn't to train dogs, masters or mistresses to obey. To protect the animal forest dwellers, the leash requirement applies in forests throughout the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.

Nationalpark, Darßer Weststrand, Hund an der Leine © K. Bärwald
The dog must also stay on a leash on the Weststrand beach.

A dog's hunting instinct is quite natural

Anything that moves triggers a dog's very own hunting instinct. Very few can resist it. The hunting instinct is simply unavoidable, otherwise a dog would not be a dog. Naturally, a good upbringing counteracts this. But it is not obvious to a dog or a person how successful a "Heel!" command will be. A leash remains the only reliable protection for the wild animals. Red deer and fallow deer, wild boar, fox and hare, they all leave their traces for the dog's sensitive nose and are massively disturbed by dogs on the prowl. For example, when rearing their young in spring and summer. The well-hidden young animals or clutches are easy prey.

To protect the bird world

A dog taking a cool bath nearby or exploring the beach has devastating consequences for breeding and resting birds, especially if the "duck hunting" mode is suddenly activated. There is therefore no freedom for dogs in the national park's waters. This is where the domain of water birds begins.

Winter rest for deer and stag

In autumn, it's not only resting birds that need maximum energy reserves to fly on, the mating season of the deer also uses up all their reserves. Every sprint to escape uses up a lot of strength and always has consequences, all year round, especially when the animals are in hibernation.

Personal consideration

For some non-dog-loving two-legged national park guests, the free-roaming four-legged friend can also cause stress. Not everyone likes to play on their get-away to the countryside and some nature lovers prefer to enjoy the sanderlings on the drift line. Rex and friends can't help it - whoever is on the other end of the lead is responsible.

Last but not least: Please no poop bags in the protected area

With the dog on the path and on a leash, there is nothing to prevent you visiting the Baltic Sea, the Darsswald forest or the Bodden. The dog's leftovers are best disposed of away from the path without using a bag. If a bag is used, it has no place in the protected area.