MLB Dog Days: A New Kind of Ballpark Dog

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golden retriever baseball costume pictureChristian Peterson, Getty Images

For those whose love of America's pastime is second only to their love of man's best friend, Major League Baseball is ushering in a canine-friendly tradition: Dog Days. Hold the mustard and relish jokes, please.

A New Summertime Tradition
While some ball clubs are calling it "Bark in the Park" and others "Dog Days," this summertime event is, like most great ideas, both simple and awesome. Participating MLB teams are inviting you to bring your favorite well-behaved, and currently vaccinated pooch along to the ballpark to root for the home team. Who doesn't want an excuse to put their dog in a baseball jersey?

While almost all of dog day events include a parade around the field's warning track, prizes for the most fanatically-dressed canine (see photo above), and of course, a viewing of major league action, the perks vary.

The Cincinnati Reds charge $27 for its dog day package that includes entry for one owner and one dog and photo-ops with with Reds team members. The Houston Astros charge $40 for "Bullpen Box Seats " for pup and owner or $20 for "Barking Room Only" tickets. The Los Angeles Dodgers event costs $30 per owner plus $30 per pooch and features a pre-game "pup rally" with skateboard demos in the parking lot, goodie bags and a pre-game parade.

What You Need To Know
Most dog day events require advanced notice that you plan to bring your pup, along with a signed liability waiver and proof of current vaccinations. To find out what your favorite team is doing to get in on the dog-friendly action, check the "Promotions & Giveaways" schedule on your team's website.

Here are some of the 2011 dog day events:

Atlanta Braves - Bark in the Park: May 1st vs. St. Louis Cardinals.

Chicago White Sox - Dog Day: May 17th vs. Texas Rangers.
Note: Email Mary Weiss MWeiss@chisox.com for a Dog Day application or call: 312-674-5244

Cincinnati Reds - Bark in the Park: April 3rd vs. Milwaukee Brewers; September 14th vs. Chicago Cubs.

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