A few years ago, when it looked like the dog parks of Sydney and Melbourne would soon become the world’s largest, it was hard to imagine how much more people would come to the capital’s Dog Park.
Since then, Dog Park Australia has become a hub of dog-friendly activity for the nation, attracting people from across the globe to enjoy its dog-oriented facilities.
And now, a new plan to improve the Dog Park has come to light, and it could mean an even more vibrant and dog-filled future.
The plan is for dog parks to be closed to visitors from 10am to 8pm on Sundays, and on Monday and Tuesday from 8am to 5pm.
If you’re in Sydney or Melbourne, you might want to plan your visit around that time to avoid missing out on a dog park experience.
But if you’re on the West Coast, it’s a bit more straightforward, with all dog parks on Sunday and Tuesday being closed to the public from 10pm until 6am.
You’ll still be able to see dogs, play, and take in the sights of Dog Park’s dog-focused attractions, including a dog-free playground, a kennel for animals with special needs, and a dog sanctuary.
While Dog Park is closed on Sunday, it will open to the general public on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
Dog Park Australia’s chief executive, Steve Kettl, says the decision to close Sunday was taken after a study into the dog-parking industry.
“We’ve found a lot of people were finding that they couldn’t make the most of it,” he told CNN.
A dog park is a dog walker’s paradise, so when a company decides to close its dog park, the staff of the park are put in the position of deciding how to re-open it.
Kettl said there were some “quite vocal and emotional” complaints about the closure.
He also said the closure was necessary to save money and to reduce traffic congestion.
However, the decision will not affect the thousands of dogs who stay in the Dog Parks every day, or the people who love them.
In a statement to CNN, Dog Parks Australia said the decision was made as part of the company’s “comprehensive” planning process.
Dogs can be “a very stressful, emotionally and physically draining experience” but the organisation said it was “proud to be a part of this exciting, world-class environment for dog lovers to enjoy”.
“As such, we’ve worked hard to ensure the dogpark will remain open to guests, including ensuring that the dogwalking areas remain open, while ensuring that visitors are able to enjoy the park and its attractions.
“The Dog Park will also continue to operate for as long as there are dogs,” it added.
Some of the changes in the dogparks are aimed at ensuring people are able come to their favourite places and enjoy them.
Dogs will be allowed to use the park for free, and will be able “to walk, run or jump through the dogpiles”, and dogs will also be allowed in the park’s playgrounds and a kitty pool.
Visitors will also have access to a kiddy pool, which can be accessed by “dolphin-style” rides and by “sportive play” with kitties.
There will also no longer be dog walkers on-site during peak season, as they were able to work from home during the peak season.
They will be replaced by dog walk staff, and “new services will be introduced” to help dogs cope with the stressful times of the year.
People will be asked to keep a distance of 10 metres from dogs, and the number of dogs that can be on-street at any one time will be limited to five.
All dogs will be monitored by a trained staff member and must have their own leash, so visitors can be assured they are safe.
Once the new rules are in place, Dog Pools Australia hopes to have a new dog park ready to open by the end of the decade.