Quick Dog Park Rant

I can't speak for overseas, or even other regions of New Zealand but as for Wellington, we have a distinct lack of decent dog parks and walks. New Zealand is known for its amazing scenery, it's lush green areas and of course, sheep. However, dogs are not welcome in most of this, and every year the councils restrict us even further. The reason I write about this topic today is that one of our local off leash dog walks, is being threatened to be changed to leash only. The reason they are changing this on us? Because the Frisbee Golf players complained about the dogs getting in the way. Now is also a good time to mention that I have only seen people playing Frisbee Golf there once, and they were a family mucking around, not playing by any rules.

Why is it that dogs are always shunned to the side? Part of a dog owners responsibility is to make sure their dog gets enough exercise to stimulate their mind and also keep them healthy. Most dogs will take hours to tire out on a leashed walk, Diego included, however with the option of off leash they can run around unhindered by us slow humans, and burn all that energy. I truly believe Diego would go stir crazy without the chance to be let off leash in an open area. Without the chance to burn off this excess energy leads to a lot of problems in dogs, barking being one of the most common and most annoying to the general public.

Another decent reason that dogs need the chance to be let off leash in public is for socialization. Not only socialization with dogs, but people as well. Dogs need the chance to experience their own kind, with no restrictions or physical barriers. We all know a few dogs that are unpredictable to their own kind when restricted by a leash, and then become the most friendly pup when let to play off leash. This is because they can act naturally, they are allowed to go through the steps of greeting another dog as they would instinctively. Dogs will also get the chance to interact with humans, and be able to react accordingly and appropriately.

Back to the dog exercise area at hand. A group of passionate dog owners have got behind this to try and prevent the change from occurring, and if a change does happen, they want it to involve a new fenced in dog area! Currently in Wellington we have only one fenced dog park, and this has fencing that leaves a lot to be desired. The fencing is not only too short for medium dogs and higher, it also has many gaps in it which means that dogs that are not good at recall or are generally not good off-leash will easily slip through these onto a busy main road. We have taken Diego and Asha to that park before and had a great time as they are not runners. It would be amazing to have that facility around the corner from our home!

My personal opinion is that we should have the dog fenced area, as well as being allowed off leash in the surrounding areas! I would love it if you could get behind the cause, whether you live in Wellington or not, the more support we can get the more likely we are to get our way!
Check out the Facebook page for updates and meetings. 


  1. Thanks for your support! It is hard when recreational dog walkers are not a collective group with the force to effectively lobby the Councils. If we were a sports club it would be quite a different story!


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