What's Fresh?

Category Archives: FMO Canine Good Citizen Program

Socialize Your Dog BEFORE Visiting Market

By | FMO Canine Good Citizen Program | No Comments

For a lot of people, attending Farmers Market of the Ozarks isn’t just about getting your local groceries and artisan products (although that is a big part of it!). Farmers market is also all about the social experience – visiting with the farmers who grew your food, meeting up with good friends for a bite to eat from the food trucks, or letting your child play with other kiddos in the pop-up fountains. There is no doubt about it – FMO is one of Springfield’s greatest social scenes! But is it a great social scene for your dog?

Many folks attend FMO (or other busy settings) with their dogs thinking that it will help the dog ‘get their social on,’ so to speak. But the fact of the matter is, our bustling marketplace is NOT an appropriate place to socialize your pup. As a responsible dog owner, you’ll want to think about it from the dog’s point of view – if you have never been acclimated to people, vehicles, live music and other dogs, would you be comfortable sitting still while mom and dad purchase their tomatoes when folks are visiting loudly, PA announcements are booming from the pavilion speakers, or a toddler tries to grab your tail in an attempt to pet you? Probably not, right?

Misti Fry, of Springfield Side Kick Dog Training, offers some stellar advice about proper socialization for Fido: “” Giving dogs proper socialization is a conscious effort to expose the dog to new situations and make sure the dog is not overwhelmed and has a positive experience with the new situation. During this process the owner should be focusing on the dog and making sure it is learning happily. Proper socialization should have already been done with the dog before it is exposed to extremely busy situations like the farmers market. It is very easy to be distracted and allow the dog to encounter things it is not ready for. Even a well socialized dog can be faced with challenges at such a busy place like the market. It is our job as responsible owners to prepare our dogs with training and pay attention to their emotional state whenever we take them into public.”

Now, does this mean you can’t ever bring your dog into a busy social atmosphere? Not at all – but it will take time and proper training. Start out by taking your dog for a walk around the community garden and micro-orchard on market day – they’ll still be close to the action, but no so close as to put them in a stressful situation. (Plus, there is a ‘doggy bag’ station in the micro-orchard!) Having training sessions with Springfield Side Kick Dog Training will also help with proper socialization skills, plus get you and your dog on track to register with FMO’s Canine Good Citizen program!

Dogs can learn to enjoy some of the same fun social atmospheres that you do – but make sure you have set them up for success first!

Want to Bring Your Four-Legged Friends to Market?

By | FMO Canine Good Citizen Program, Things to Know When Visiting FMO | No Comments

Farmers Market of the Ozarks (FMO) staff and vendors have strived to address any violations of the dog policy or other problems with dogs and the market has continued to receive a number of complaints from customers about problems with dogs, including dog quarrels, defecation, crowd and safety concerns. Crowded market days are especially stressful for dogs, even those who are exceptionally well socialized. While many farmers’ markets have banned dogs, the market’s board has opted instead to adopt a policy that seeks to accommodate all community members, including those who support dogs at the market and those who do not. Please read and sign the attached liability agreement.

Customers who bring dogs to the market need to follow these rules:

  1. Only dogs with the FMO Good Pet bandana and a signed liability agreement will be allowed in the pavilion, promenade, or plaza areas during market hours.
  2. Your dog must be sociable to people and other dogs to earn the right to shop at the market. Completion of the AKC Canine Good Citizen Program or similar training is essential to help balance the concerns of our customers, the vendors, and the dogs. Dogs who meet this requirement will receive bandanas to show their accomplishment.
  3. Dogs must be current on all vaccinations and meet municipal requirements.
  4. Dogs must be kept on a short (6 ft or less), non-retractable leather or nylon leash. No exceptions.
  5. Keep your dog under control and by your side at all times. Jumping on, licking, or aggressive behavior toward other people will result in the customer being required to immediately return the FMO Good Pet bandana.
  6. Aggressive behavior, barking, and growling are signs of a dog that is stressed. Owners of dogs who fight will be asked to immediately return the FMO Good Pet bandana and remove their dog from the market.
  7. Keep dogs away from produce, plants and other food products. Food safety is a key issue to local food producers. Please control the head and the rear of the dog while visiting vendor’s stalls.
  8. Not everyone is a dog lover: Be considerate.
  9. Come prepared to clean up after your dog! Bags are located in locations in and near the pavilion, and along the paths near the micro orchard.
  10. If a dog is not behaving in accordance with these rules, the market staff will to ask that the owner to return the bandana and remove the dog immediately.
  11. No other pets will be allowed.
  12. Service animals are welcome.

Misti Fry of Side Kick Dog Training Academy presents the Canine Good Citizen Program and it’s new role for shoppers and their family members at the Farmers Market of the Ozarks on this video, watch here:

Need to Know Info When Bringing Pets to FMO

By | FMO Canine Good Citizen Program, Things to Know When Visiting FMO | No Comments
13028_989131147778303_862138579903960583_n copy

Two of our dog owners with their Canine Good Citizens sporting their FMO bandanas.

At FMO, we love our farmers AND our four-legged friends!  That is why we created our FMO Canine Good Citizen Program, so that our vendors, customers and dogs can enjoy a safe and harmonious environment centered around local food.  We welcome your dog at market – but we have just a few steps for you to follow!

In order to register your dog in our program for attendance at market, you will need to bring us a form or paperwork proving that your pooch has been through a training class, or successfully passed a performance evaluation.  The class or evaluation can be through our friends at Sidekick Dog Training, Petsmart, the AKC, or a similar organization.  Once you bring us proof of completed training or certification, you will need to purchase an FMO bandana for your dog – these cost $10 and will need to be worn by the dog each time they attend market so we know they are an FMO Good Citizen!  We will also need you to fill out a brief form saying that you take full responsibility for your dog while they are at market.

All FMO approved dogs, and their owners, are expected to follow these rules: 
1.    Only dogs with the FMO Good Pet bandana and a signed liability agreement will be allowed in the pavilion, promenade, or plaza areas during market hours.

2.    Your dog must be sociable to people and other dogs to earn the right to shop at the market. Completion of the AKC Canine Good Citizen Program or similar training is essential to help balance the concerns of our customers, the vendors, and the dogs. Dogs who meet this requirement will receive bandanas to show their accomplishment.

3.    Dogs must be current on all vaccinations and meet municipal requirements.

4.    Dogs must be kept on a short (6 ft or less), non-retractable leather or nylon leash. No exceptions.

5.    Keep your dog under control and by your side at all times. Jumping on, licking, or aggressive behavior toward other people will result in the customer being required to immediately return the FMO Good Pet bandana.

6.    Aggressive behavior, barking, and growling are signs of a dog that is stressed. Owners of dogs who fight will be asked to immediately return the FMO Good Pet bandana and remove their dog from the market.  Aggressive behavior from dog owners towards market staff, vendors, or other customers will not be tolerated either, and may result in both the dog AND the owner being asked to leave the premises.

7.    Keep dogs away from produce, plants and other food products. Food safety is a key issue to local food producers.  Please control the head and the rear of the dog while visiting vendor’s stalls.

8.    Not everyone is a dog lover: Be considerate.

9.    Come prepared to clean up after your dog! Bags are located in locations in and near the pavilion, and along the paths near the micro orchard.

10.    If a dog is not behaving in accordance with these rules, the market staff will to ask that the owner to return the bandana and remove the dog immediately.

11.    No other pets will be allowed.

12.    Service animals are welcome, and will receive an FMO bandana free of charge.

Please stop by the Market HUB, leave us a comment here or private message us on Facebook if you have questions!