ALDERMAN James Walker has called for a state-of-the-art, dog-friendly park in Clarence to provide a new and improved space for pet owners in the community.
“As our backyards get smaller we need to give people opportunities to exercise, interact and get out and about with their pets” Ald Walker said.
“We have a lot of dogs in Clarence and although Council offers some services and events, there’s room for improvement,” he said.
“We need to move beyond South Street, which basically provides little more than an enclosed exercise area.”
Dog parks are places where dogs can play, exercise and socialise off-leash with their owners.
These parks will provide safe spaces for natural dog behaviours like running, chasing and playing.
Mr Walker said there would only be wins involved if the dog park were to go ahead.
“Dogs are healthier, happier and less likely to be aggressive if they have opportunities to be social and get mental as well as physical stimulation,” he said.
The parks provide a safe environment for dogs to play off-leash away from cars, bikes and other obstacles.
Seniors, disabled owners and parents with prams can benefit from having a safe space to exercise their dogs.
Mr Walker is an advocate for ensuring all-abilities access and facilities.
“I’m really proud that in the past I’ve successfully championed council improving play facilities like the Bellerive Beach all-abilities playground,” he said.
“I will go in batting for dog parks during the next term of council, if re-elected.”
The first steps for making this vision a reality will involve community consultation and careful consideration of location, access and management of risk, impact and cost.
“I’m aware of some great places interstate and overseas – we can learn from what others have done,” Ald Walker said.
“I believe we could have the best dog-friendly park in Australia right here in Clarence providing fun and free activity for all members of the family.”
What makes an excellent dog park?
Plenty of space allowing room to roam.
Challenges so dogs can exercise their body and their brain.
Different surfaces like level fields, gentle hills, clumps of rocks, logs and tunnels.
Special use areas for shy, older or smaller dogs.
Careful selection of dog friendly plants and trees for shade.
Walking trail with good accessibility for wheelchairs and strollers.
Waste stations, water for drinking, signs and seating.
Good fencing and a few carefully planned double entrance and exit points.
Caption: Alderman James Walker.