Finding a suitable place to walk your beloved pet may prove to be somewhat of a challenge in Qatar, even during the cooler months when the outdoor weather is ideal. This is mainly due to the fact that it is prohibited to walk dogs in most public areas, meaning that even something as simple as taking your dog to the local park is no longer an option.
Despite these restrictions, there are a number of places – both in Doha and outside of the capital – that are considered to be ‘pet-friendly’.
If you live on a compound that accepts dogs, you can walk your pet on the compound or just outside it. Areas such as The Pearl and West Bay are dog-friendly, too.
Further afield, Al Wakra dog beach is very popular – particularly among expats. If you do plan to go there, it is advisable to arrive early (especially at the weekend) as it can get very busy.
Purple Island (Al Khor island) is another good option for walking your dog. Connected to land by a dirt pathway that runs through a number of streams, it should provide much fun for your four-legged pet. It is advisable to go early, however, when the tide is low!
One thing to remember is to always be vigilant when out walking with your pet. There have been reports of poisoning on some West Bay beaches, so always keep an eye on your pet and make sure that he is on a leash.
Dos and don’ts
A few simple tips can help to make your experience all the more rewarding.
Be respectful of the environment and make sure that you:
Always keep your dog on a leash. Even if he is well-behaved, most people are afraid of confronting a dog.
Always clean up after your dog. He is your responsibility and you must not leave his mess for others to clean up.
Always stay in control of your dog. Ensure that he is well-behaved and does not bark or jump up on people.
Dog groups on social media
If you are interested in talking to other dog owners in Qatar and exchanging ideas on where to take your pet, there are a handful of dog groups that are active on Facebook. Please note that some of these groups are private, so you may need to request to join them.
So, while walking your dog in Qatar may not be quite what you expected, with a little bit of time and effort it is possible to find a solution that will help your pet – and his owner – to remain happy and healthy!
The Team at the Canadian Veterinary Hospital