Seniors living in the uptown neighbourhood would welcome a place where they could let their dogs run free.
Ken and Catherine McEwen recently wrote to city council asking that the city consider providing an off-leash area in Moody Park. They noted that the increasing density of the neighbourhood has resulted in a large number of apartment-sized dogs that would benefit from a facility where they could play and socialize with other dogs - without getting tangled in each other's leashes.
"We know a lot of people from walking in Moody Park. We need some place to let them run," Catherine told The Record. "There are a slew of us who go over there, wander around and join up."
After their last dog died, the McEwens weren't sure if they wanted to get another dog, but they couldn't resist Indio, whom they met at a rescue shelter in Indio, California.
"He loves people, he loves other dogs," Catherine said. "There is a couple who walk their cat around the park. It is on a leash. He loves the cat - and the cat loves him."
Indio, a spaniel-Chihuahua mix, enjoys his daily walks to Moody Park, where he often joins other neighbourhood dogs.
Catherine believes an off-leash area would also benefit residents, particularly seniors, who would be able to socialize with others from the neighbourhood.
"It's really nice for the people and the dogs, she said. "We will quite often drive to Queen's Park. Every time we go there, there are big dogs. We have been to the one on Byrne
Road (Burnaby) - it is not fenced in."
Because the neighbourhood is filled with apartments and condos, Catherine said many residents have smaller dogs than those living in houses.
"We find the majority of dogs are smaller - 25 pounds and less," Catherine said of dogs in Moody Park. "You see a few of the big ones."
Earlier this year, a West End resident had asked council to consider an off-leash dog area on the west side of the city, perhaps in Grimston Park. At that time, Coun. Chuck Puchmayr suggested that a corner of Moody Park near 10th Street and Sixth Avenue would be a suitable site as it's not well used by park-goers.
"Perfect," Catherine said of the location. "It's not used. People don't use it other than to walk through on the sidewalks."
Although the McEwens believe that site would be ideal for a fenced-in, off-leash area, they also provided city council with other suggestions for Moody Park. They suggested a small area between two ball diamonds could easily be enclosed and provide a place for small dogs to run off-leash, or certain times of the day could be designated as off-leash times in the park (such as 6 to 9 a.m. and 6 to 9 p.m. daily) if the city is unable to create an off-leash area in the park.
"It's good for the dogs. They need to play, they need to romp," Catherine said.