The only off-leash dog park in Enumclaw is at Cobber’s Pet Pantry, and is a small, fenced area outside the shop. Photo by Ray Still

The only off-leash dog park in Enumclaw is at Cobber’s Pet Pantry, and is a small, fenced area outside the shop. Photo by Ray Still

Dog park idea topic of open house

Enumclaw’s Park Board will host a public meeting March 14 at City Hall.

Man’s best friend could soon have a city-sanctioned, off-leash place to run and play.

The city of Enumclaw, through its Park Board, has been looking at the possibility of creating a dog park – a secure piece of land where owners can take their pets and turn them loose, where they’re free to interact with other canines or simply sniff some new turf.

The idea will be taken public the evening of March 14 when the Park Board hosts an open house. All are invited to the 6 p.m. session at Enumclaw City Hall, 1339 Griffin Ave.

Michelle Larson, head of the city’s Parks and Recreation Department, said the open house will feature a two-way format. The city will have information available, including possible sites for a dog park, but will also be soliciting citizen opinion.

Larson said the idea for a dog park is not really new, having been included when the city’s formal Park Plan was last updated in 2014. Inclusion in the Park Plan was partially the result of public surveys done at the time, she said.

The notion has picked up steam more recently.

“In the past two years it has come up quite often,” Larson said, with a nod toward a Facebook group dedicated solely to getting a facility in the city. The Facebook presence, a closed group called “Let’s Build Enumclaw a Dog Park,” currently has 199 members.

It was about 18 months ago, Larson said, that the Park Board began researching the pros and cons of municipally-owned dog parks. Regional venues were visited and, as part of the process, existing city parks were examined to determine which might be suitable.

Larson said three parks are on the short list and those will be disclosed during the open house on the 14th.

If the city opts to proceed with a dog park, she said, it would be “pretty minimal” at the outset. It would likely be an acre or two in size, just a fenced-off area with some type of gated entry system.

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