Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Local News

April 3, 2014

Officials propose dog park for city of Bluefield

BLUEFIELD — A proposed dog park in the city of Bluefield could bring a fresh new perspective on responsible dog ownership in the city, according to city officials.

A dog park has been proposed to be located at the old Fairview School location between Rockbridge Road and Shenandoah Road, assistant city manager Josh Cline said.

“Because animal issues continue to be a problem in the city, it would be nice to do something to promote and teach responsible dog ownership,” Cline said.

Not only will the dogs be able to play but obedience classes and other pet owner classes will be offered through the parks and recreation department, Cline said.

“There will be rules, of course, that people will have to follow such as dogs will have to be registered with the city and up-to-date on their shots, among other things,” Cline said.

Public comments will be taken at the Bluefield Board of Directors meeting on Tuesday, April 8, at 12:30 p.m. about the dog park.

“We are looking for comments both pro and con on the dog park,” Mayor Tom Cole said. “This is just in the beginning stages and we are looking for residents to come out and tell us their thoughts and input on the subject.”

Dog parks have been a huge success across the country, Cole added.

“We think this is a great opportunity to appeal to animal lovers and non-animal lovers. It would be wonderful for dogs to run, play and use up some energy to hopefully be less disruptive in the evenings,” Cole said. “We also believe the dog park would be a wonderful place for people and animals to socialize responsibly.

There has been a substantial increase in dog parks over the past few years, according to parks and recreation director Dwight Godwin.

“I have done dog parks everywhere I have worked, they are a wonderful amenity to a park. People will have to register to use the dog park and follow the rules,” Godwin said. “We hope this will be a self-guided park so everyone can use it and enjoy it. It is a wonderful park setting and really brings the community together

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