Just go to a designated off-leash park.
That’s what Hugh Davies, Delta’s Manager of Property Use and Compliance, is reminding residents as more people seem to have gotten themselves four-legged friends during the pandemic, but not everyone is following the rules.
The Optimist recently received a complaint from a resident about someone allowing their dogs to roam off-leash at Ladner Harbour Park, while dogs can frequently be seen running free at other places such as Memorial Park.
“People complain about quite a few of the parks about dogs off-leash. In the summer, we have park patrols and they have issued quite a few warnings to people about their dogs being off-leash. For the most part, people are cooperative,” said Davies.
He noted the city has several off-leash dog areas including the popular North 40 Park Reserve in East Delta, however, some people still prefer to let their pets run off-leash at community parks where the animals are required to be on-leash.
He said it’s frustrating for residents who want to enjoy a park with their families and don’t want to be bothered by somebody’s loose dog approaching them.
“It’s been ongoing for a while. Particularly during the pandemic, a lot of dogs have been adopted, and so there’s a lot more people out there walking dogs. Every once in a while you have some dogs that are not well behaved,” said Davies.
“The phrase a lot of owners quote is ‘don’t worry, he’s friendly.’ But people don’t care if he’s friendly or not, they just don’t want a dog running up to them, particularly when they have children around. The public parks are shared by everybody and not everybody likes dogs.”
Following an uptick in complaints, the city is adding additional patrols to make sure people aren’t allowing their off-leash dogs to disturb the wildlife in the foreshore area of Boundary Bay.
Delta council recently approved a staff recommendation to construct another new off-leash compound, this one at Mackie Park in North Delta.
The $300,000 project will be constructed just north of the parking lot at Gray Elementary and east of the gravel playing field
The city is also planning to add an off-leash enclosure at Pebble Hill Park in Tsawwassen.
That proposal still has to go to council for approval.