Chelsea Dog Training Spots

Chelsea Dog Training Spots

Owning a dog in New York City can be so difficult, especially if you’re living in an area that’s always in constant motion! It’s even harder if you have a dog that is sensitive to noises, crowds, other dogs, strangers, or construction, not to mention the dozens of other potentially scary and stressful things you might run into on any given trip. It gets EVEN CRAZIER when you find out that dogs mimic their owner’s cortisol levels over the long term! The more stressed out you are about avoiding triggers and issues on a walk, the more your canine companion will also stress out about it! Check out (THIS) if you want to learn more! So what do you do? Sometimes it seems like there’s nowhere to go and nothing you can do to help your walks with your dog be a little calmer and less stressful. How do you get away from the insanity of the city? Well, never fear! We are here to point out some helpful spots in Chelsea and Flatiron, as well as some tips and tricks, that can make both you and your dog feel a little safer and less stressed out!

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Hudson River Park

A bit of a trek depending on where you’re located in the neighborhood, Hudson River Park is a beautiful, long park stretching 550 acres! I have worked with dogs that were only happy when we brought them to Hudson River Park. It was the only place they felt they could walk safely. If your dog is sensitive to other dogs,  I would avoid the 22nd st entrance since it is right next to a dog park. Instead, try the 20th st entrance by Chelsea Piers for an easier, more dog-free time! (check streets) Benefits of the park:
  • Winding gardens and paths with good visibility allow you to see triggers before it’s too late and avoid them
  • Despite potential crowding in the summertime, there is far more maneuverability than any city street!
  • Trees, grass, water, and nature are relaxing for both you and your dog. Certainly better than concrete and construction!
  • Benches, rocks, and sculptures give plenty of places to do some doggy acrobatics and games
  • If you and your dog like to run, there is a bike/run path along the park!

South of Hudson Yards (24th-28th streets, between 10th and 12th ave)

Why are we suggesting this seemingly arbitrary, somewhat industrial part of town? This stretch of Chelsea, nestled amongst the famed galleries and beyond, is much quieter than any other part of the neighborhood, and is perfect if you don’t quite have the time to commit to Hudson River Park! The galleries between 10th and 11th ave’s can be a bit busy, but once you get between 11th and 12th ave’s is when the real quiet begins! On the other hand, it can be a bit grungy, dirty, and sometimes creepy down there past the galleries! But don’t worry, the area is being developed, and plenty of startups and bigger businesses are starting to move into the area and clean it up a bit! Benefits of these streets:
  • Very quiet, not a lot of distractions. No need to be on constant high alert!
  • Much easier to avoid dogs and other triggers than on a typical Manhattan street
  • Great for dogs that need a long walk. There is a lot of sidewalks to tread!

Madison Square Park

At first glance, Madison Square Park may not seem like an ideal place to relax for you and your dog. It is busy, crowded, and full of dogs. However, the park offers a few things that regular Manhattan streets do not, namely: space and choice. Relaxing and lowering stress is not always about quietude. It is an attitude that you can practice, even in a place as busy as Madison Square Park, as long as you are able to ensure that you give you and your dog the advantage in difficult situations! Benefits of the park: Benefits of the park:
  • Visibility, so you can see triggers well before they are going to be a problem
  • A neutral space to practice socialization
  • Plenty of distractions and triggers to practice with
  • Places to sit down and relax
  • Right next to a huge pet store
  • Visibility, so you can see triggers well before they are going to be a problem

Gramercy Square Park

While you can’t actually go into the park (unless you know someone who can hook you up!), the small area around the park is a bastion of greenery and calm in the middle of an otherwise crazy part of the city. Many dog walkers enjoy this area, so if your dog is sensitive to other dogs, you may be better off checking out another of our suggested locations. However, if you just need to get away from the construction, noise, and crowds, and you’re okay with running into some other pups, this is a perfect choice! Benefits of the park:
  • Calm, pretty oasis in the middle of a busy neighborhood
  • Good, calm, neutral place to meet other dogs for socialization practice
  • Options and escapes for avoiding triggers
  • Perfect place for parallel walking practice; just enough distance and distraction

Below 14th street

If you are lucky enough to live near the edge of the West Village, it’s easy enough to pop down below 14th street during a walk! Once you get below 14th, things start to calm down a lot. Small, winding, beautiful streets are rarely jammed with cars. Tiny parks, places to sit, nooks and crannies, and other such spaces make for good training spots, places to sit and take some deep breaths, or areas to avoid oncoming triggers. While you may not have great trigger visibility, you’re sure to have a much calmer, more interesting(?) walk if you decide to wander around these streets with your best friend! Benefits of this area:
    • Low traffic, mild construction, and fewer street noises make this an ideal location for walks
    • Parks big and small, little plazas, and hidden spots to rest and catch a breather, or avoid triggers
    • Plenty of training spots, with variable levels of triggers for practice
    • Options for walks; the quiet streets stretch on and on!

You might also be interested in how to have a relaxing walk with your dog in New York City.