There was a meeting of canines and their masters Saturday at Waterloo Lake Regional Park in Denison. The group was there to dedicate the city’s new dog park and open the two-section facility to the four-legged friends.
The park had been in the works for over a year, Denison Parks and Rec Management Assistant Bill Medina said. It broke ground in July.
“I think the natural landscaping here is the most unique feature,” he said. “Not a lot of other dog parks have a space this large for the dogs to run in, and we have these full-grown trees here.”
Community and Development Services Director Kimberly Murray said, when it came to choosing an area for the park, it made sense to use an area that was already in a park but was just underutilized.
“We have a lot of folks that utilize this park on a daily basis,” she said. “Now it is a nice fit next to one of the areas where children come to play. People can get on the trails, hike and bike and bring their dogs.”
Rule signs are posted on the entrances to each portion of the park. Medina said it is important to make sure that the areas are not only safe for the other dogs but that they are safe for humans as well.
The small dog area is for dogs under 29 pounds and the large area is for dogs over that weight.
Caycee McBride brought her four-pound, seven-month-old Pomeranian to the park Saturday. She said it is important that dogs have opportunities to socialize with other dogs.
“I just got her, and she is an only dog,” she said. “A lot of the dogs in my neighborhood are bigger, and we need small dogs for her to play with. She loves dogs, but she has never really been around a dog that wants to play with her.”
Vying to play with dogs and humans alike was Sterling, a two-year-old Great Dane. Owner Dan Tuffley said Sterling is a big baby but would like to be off leash at the park.
“We knew that the park was opening and knew that this would be a great time to come down and see a brand new dog park in Denison,” he said. “We also wanted to get him into the contest.”
Sterling, dressed as a knight in shining armor, took part in the dog costume contest during Saturday’s festivities.
In the midst of the free hot dogs, music, and contests for pets and pet owners was the Denison Animal Welfare Group.
Murray took the time to tell individuals about an added feature of the park, the brick walkway. Individuals can purchase a re-purposed brick and have their dog’s name engraved on it. The brick will then be used to make a walkway around the gazebo next to the dog park.
Available through the end of the year, each brick is $50.
“We will be using the money for services for the dog park,” Murray said. “It will go to things like obedience training or other types of activities that our dog owners would like to see. We want to give it back to the dog owners.”