Castle Rock looking at off-leash dog park

Stephen Floyd

Castle Rock is considering the possibility of establishing an off-leash dog park within the city after receiving a letter encouraging officials to help provide such a facility for local dog owners.

In the letter, resident Aneilia Moore describes how she and her dog, Gus, enjoy taking walks outdoors in the city, but how his exercise may be interrupted by outbursts of curiosity for new places, smells and other dogs.

“Our city is becoming more and more crowded with dogs not having a place to release their energy and interact with other dogs while being off the leash,” stated her letter, which was included with the City Council’s agenda packet during their May 12 meeting. “Dogs need an enclosed area to run and play while preventing them from endangering themselves and others. Well exercised dogs are often less likely to create a nuisance, bark excessively, and destroy property which would make them better neighbors.”

The letter went on to state an “ideal dog park” would include four-to-six-foot chain link fencing, with a double-gated entrance, and recommends donations be sought to obtain such materials.

After considering Moore’s letter, the council said it would be best to delegate the matter to the city’s Park Board for consideration of what resources and opportunities may be available for an off-leash park.

Public Works Director Dave Vorse, who acts as staff representative to the Park Board, said he expects it may be a matter of months before the board can prepare an official recommendation to the council, as research must be conducted and proposals drafted, adding the board has no official position yet on the feasibility or favorability of an off-leash dog park.

Vorse did state other public facilities, such as the bike park and the boat launch, began similarly as a recommendation from residents, who in turn organized volunteers and donations to bring their vision to life. Vorse additionally said residents interested in contributing to a potential dog park may contact him through City Hall.

Interested parties are also invited to attend the Park Board meetings, which are always open to the public and held the second Wednesday of the month at 7 p.m. in the Senior Center. The next meeting is scheduled for June 11 and board discussion of a potential off-leash dog park is expected to begin at that time.

To find our more about the proposed dog park, or general Park Board activities, call City Hall at (360) 274-8181.