Paw Parks Provide Play Place for Pooches
Popular parks feature off-leash areas for small and large dogs.
Logan Lutes came to the Paw Park at Arnold City Park Wednesday to let his dogs, Max and Lilly, run off leash with dogs their own size.
About 15 other pet owners and their pooches joined them to socialize and enjoy the evening’s cooler temperatures.
The 1-acre dog park is completely fenced in with two separate areas for dogs 25 pounds and smaller and for dogs heavier than 25 pounds. It also includes a doggie water fountain, fire hydrants, shade and benches for dog owners and a bag dispenser for cleaning up after the dogs.
Max, a Lab-shepherd mix, was pulling at his leash as soon as they entered the gate and quickly fell in with several other dogs in the large dog area. Some were chasing Frisbees. Others were chasing balls. Most just seemed to enjoy running free inside the fenced area built especially for them.
“We live in a townhouse, so we don’t really have a lot of room for him to run around,” Lutes, of Arnold, said. “He loves it.”
Lilly, a Beagle puppy, was happy trotting through the grass and playing with Lutes’ 5-year-old daughter Justice in the small dog area.
Samantha McArthur of Arnold brought her new Lab-Boxer mix, Breezy, for her first visit Wednesday.
“We got her about two and a half weeks ago and wanted to get her socialized with other animals,” McArthur said, throwing a well-chewed tennis ball for Breezy to fetch. “So far it’s been great.”
Sandy Hamilton of South County, a volunteer with Stray Rescue who plans to open her own doggy day care, brought her two Australian Shepherds, Jazz and Casey, to visit with the other dogs while she enjoyed some social time of her own.
“My dogs love it.” Hamilton said. “It’s wonderful. It’s free. There’s no open parks around like this one except for here. It’s great to have them playing with other dogs.”
Steve and Sheri Zeuner of Imperial brought their Corgi-shepherd mix Haley and their Keeshond Heidi to enjoy some outdoor playtime they cannot enjoy at home because their home lacks a fenced yard.
“We can bring the dogs and let them run around and play and be around other dogs,” Steve Zeuner said.
Arnold Parks and Recreation Director Susie Boone said Arnold opened its first Paw Park at City Park off north Jeffco Boulevard in 2008 with the support and design assistance of Lowe’s.
A trivia night fundraiser brought in more than $15,000 for the park, Boone said. Arnold Animal Hospital donated another $3,000 for a dog water fountain, she said.
Demand was so great, the city opened a second dog park at Ferd B. Lang Park on Old Lemay Ferry Road, south of Church Road, last year. That park includes fencing donated by Walmart.
“It’s been amazing the amount of usage that these Paw Parks receive,” Boone said. “The community response has been beyond expectation.”
The parks are open daily from sunrise to sunset. All dogs must be currently licensed, with tags and collar on, and current on all vaccinations. Dogs must be healthy, with no known history of dangerous behavior. Up to two dogs per adult per visit are allowed. For a complete list of rules, visit the City of Arnold website.
The parks are maintained through donations and fund raisers. To make a donation, contact Boone at 636-282-2380.