The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

Starkville has dog-friendly locations

The Reflector – Katie Poe

Shitzu-poodle mix Nina plays near Moncrief Park in downtown Starkville. 

Mississippi has the sixth-highest rate of dog-ownership in the country, with almost half of all households owning a dog, and Starkville is no exception to the rule.

Both the Mississippi State University campus and Starkville at large are saturated with canine pets. Just like humans, dogs need to get out of the house. Luckily for pet-owners, Starkville offers an array of dog-friendly spots.
Moncrief Park, located on North Jackson Street, is home to the Starkville dog park. The park is equipped with picnic tables, shady trees, tires, a drinking station, plastic kiddie pools and waste bags for pet excrement.

The fenced area in the park allows for off-leash play, making it the perfect place for pets to roam freely. To ensure safety for smaller dogs, there are two fenced sections: one for large dogs and one for small dogs.

Moncrief Park hosts an annual dog swim at the park’s pool during the summer, sponsored by the Oktibbeha County Humane Society. All dogs are required to be at least 4 months old, have an up-to-date rabies vaccination and cannot exhibit aggressive behavior or excessive barking.

On MSU’s campus, there are many places for dogs as well. Perhaps one of the best places for your pet to get some social interaction is the Drill Field. Located in the heart of campus, dogs are commonly found playing and lounging with their owners. The area provides a perfect place for fetch, and passersby are sure to offer affection to the animals.

Lake Chadwick is also a fantastic place to exercise dogs. With benches and grassy areas, owners can sit and watch while their canines run freely and swim in the lake. The scenic space provides a great view of the sunset, and overall, is great for owners and dogs alike. Excrement bags are available for quick clean-up.

Many local businesses are also dog-friendly. Business allowing dogs on their porch include Churn and Spoon, Bulldog Burger, Two Brothers, The Klaasroom and Mugshots. BIN 612 is an especially dog-friendly restaurant. The restaurant and bar will provide dogs with a water bowl, and goes so far to allow well-behaved pets inside.
Arden Smith, MSU senior psychology major and dog-owner, said Nine-twentynine is her favorite place to take her Maltese Mix, Herald.

“Herald and I like to walk from our house to downtown, and then we usually stop by Nine-twentynine,” Smith said. “I get coffee inside while someone outside watches him. Herald loves seeing all the people on the porch.”

Smith said she believes it is important for cities to have public spaces for dogs.

“As humans, we want to go places and explore new things, and so do our pups,” Smith said. “I personally think that all businesses should allow dogs inside.”

Many chain businesses also appeal to dog lovers. The local Lowe’s states it allows dogs in the store. Chick-fil-A is also happy to accommodate dogs in their outside area. If you are looking to give your pup a treat, Starbucks offers a free “puppuccino” (whipped cream in a cup) to canine customers, and Dairy Queen offers a free “pup cup” (small serving of vanilla ice cream).
John Henry Smith, a junior business major and dog-owner, said it is important to offer spaces to socialize dogs.

“Everywhere in Starkville, there are so many dogs around. It’s important to have places for dogs because so many people live in apartments,” John said. “The more dog-friendly a city is, and the more socialized dogs are–it creates for a better city for people with pets. Dogs are less aggressive and less crazy when they go out.”

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The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University
Starkville has dog-friendly locations