Petitions | Brisbane City Council

Private use dog park (Pay as you go)

Principal Petitioner Lia Cragnolini, Holland Park
Date Closed Wed, 04 Apr 2018 This epetition has ended
No. of signatures 27 signatures

(View signatures)

Residents draw to the attention of the Brisbane City Council the need to have access to a private use dog park. This dog park would enable residents to exercise their dogs with the comfort of having control over the access and sharing with other dogs and their owners, during their allotted booking time. This is a need that numerous dog owners have as they own dogs that are too timid, playful and/or unsocial to interact with a group of dogs which may be unknown to them. It would also provide peace of mind that their dog won’t be exposed to other dogs that might prove to be incompatible, unsafe or dangerous. This need is growing with the movement to adopt rescue dogs; many of whom have had instability and a lack of appropriate exposure, socialisation and positive experiences and therefore require privacy and security when being energetic.

Dogs that have been declared by Council as menacing or dangerous, and therefore not permitted to attend dog parks, would have access to the private dog park so their owners can exercise them in a safe, secure and appropriate manner. This need is also accumulating due to the impact of increases to housing density where more people are living in apartments or have smaller residential blocks. This concept is not looking for ongoing budget from the Brisbane City Council as the hire rates should be costed to cover ongoing maintenance and insurance. If needed, the group of interested dog owners would be willing to crowdfund the costs of establishing the private use dog park and therefore would limit the impacts on the local public space infrastructure budget.

This section explains the action that is required in response to the issue/grievance. Your petitioners therefore request that the Brisbane City Council provides the land, establishment and maintenance of a private use dog park. It would be requested that this dog park is:

1. not in the vicinity of a current dog park

2. substantial enough for larger dogs to be able to open up into a good run

3. appointed with similar features to other dog parks (e.g. shade, benches for owners to sit on, human and dog water fountain, rubbish bins, waste bags etc. and if possible agility equipment)

4. equipped with a solid fence that would prevent dogs on either side of the fence from seeing through and becoming over excited and stimulated, particularly when other dogs are waiting their turn

5. to have a 6-foot fence (height should be higher than the standard dog park fence, to assist dog owners with dogs that are good jumpers)

6. based on the same technology as the CityCycles so that a Go Card could pay for the entry

7. linked to an app so that dog owners can book out the park in advance

8. the app would ensure that the bookings are traceable to the dog owner, who must be a current council resident

9. dog owner can turn up to dog park without a booking and book on the spot if available

10. governed by rules. For example (these rules would require further consultation with registered dog owners) (a) can only use the park if Go Card (or payment card) is registered and linked to dog registration details, (b) booking slots are 30 mins in length, (c) cannot book more than 2 x 30 minute slots consecutively, (d) cannot pre-book more than 4 x 30 minute slots in a week (Monday to Sunday), (e) if a booking is late by 10 minutes, the booking is forfeited without refund and is available to be booked by another owner, (f) if an owner doesn’t attend four bookings in a calendar month, the owner is banned from pre-booking for a fortnight, (g) if late in vacating the park (more than five minutes) charged another 15 minutes, (h) if late in vacating more than four times in a month banned for a fortnight.

Council response

Thank you for your petition requesting that Council provide a private use dog park.

Council has completed an investigation and considered your request. It was decided that the petitioners be advised of the following information.

Council’s policy for establishing dog off-leash areas is outlined in the Infrastructure design planning scheme policy of Brisbane City Plan 2014. When determining suitable dog off-leash locations, the size of the park, demand, locality and placement of existing facilities in the area are considered. These considerations ensure that a dog off-leash area complements and enhances the other recreation opportunities in a park.

The Public Land and Council Assets Local Law 2014 states that a dog in a park must be restrained on a leash under proper control, to not cause annoyance to any person or animal. The Animals Local Law 2003 also requires dogs to be kept under ‘effective control’, whereby a dog in an off-leash area is unable to cause damage to a person, animal or property. Outside of an off-leash area, a dog is required to be on a leash.

It is the dog owner’s responsibility to ensure:

• the dog is under control (for example, your dog will return to you when called)

• the dog is not a nuisance to other dogs and their owners

• the dog's droppings are disposed of in the bins provided

• the dog is registered with Council, wormed regularly, and its vaccinations are up to date.

Council provides 143 dog off-leash areas in parks across Brisbane. These locations are generally fenced areas where dogs can run, exercise and socialise leash-free with other dogs and dog park visitors. Dog off-leash areas include facilities such as seating, water, dog waste bins and some shaded areas. Some dog parks also include agility equipment for agility drills and shelters for dog park visitors. In response to requests from the community, Council has constructed enclosures for smaller dogs to address some of the issues faced by owners of smaller breeds.

Parks are accessible to all Brisbane residents and visitors and cater for a wide variety of recreation activities. As the dedication of Council parkland for private use would result in a net loss of public open space, Council does not support the construction of a private use dog park. However, dog off-leash areas will continue to evolve, and Council will continue to improve existing facilities and to meet community needs.