British Columbia

Speak, public, speak! Vancouver Park Board asks for input on dog parks

How should the Vancouver Park Board balance the needs of dogs, their owners and other park users? Residents are being asked to provide their input.

First public meeting Sept. 13 at Trout Lake; online input opens Thursday

Are Vancouver's parks going to the dogs? Or are there just not enough doggone off-leash parks? The Vancouver Park Board is asking the public to help it design a strategy for dogs in public parks. (CBC)

The Vancouver Park Board is asking the public to weigh in on how dogs and people should share green spaces.

The board launches an online survey Thursday and will start a series of public meetings next week on a strategy for accommodating dogs in parks.

"We need to ensure we can make our parks great spaces for people that love dogs and perhaps for people that don't love them quite so much," park board chair Sarah Kirby-Yung told On The Coast guest host Gloria Macarenko.

Kirby-Yung says the new strategy needs to consider that people with dogs are frequent users of city parks and help keep them "vibrant" but balance that with the need to deal with dog waste and noise.

She says there are an estimated 140,000 dogs in the city, but only 15 per cent are licensed. Since there is a lack of licensing data, that makes it difficult to plan where off-leash parks should be.

Kirby-Yung says she doesn't want increased enforcement of the rules for dogs in parks to be a major part of a new strategy.

"I hope through good design in terms of where facilities should be located, how the facilities are designed themselves, good signs around protocol … that we can have really good neighbours together," she said. "These are shared public spaces. So how do we ask people to be good, responsible users of those spaces?"

The first meeting on the subject will be held Sept. 13 at Trout Lake Community Centre. Information on the public consultation is available online.

With files from CBC Radio One's On The Coast

To hear the full story, click the audio labelled: Speak, public, speak! Vancouver Park Board asks for input on dog parks


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Member

Join the conversation  Create account

Already have an account?