SLC Council addresses community’s desire for more off-leash dog parks

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SALT LAKE CITY -- Last month, more than 1,000 dog owners signed a petition asking the city for more off-leash dog parks.

In their meeting Tuesday afternoon, the Salt Lake City Council discussed setting more land aside for dogs to wander off their leashes. The options are based on recommendations from the Off-Leash Community Working Group.

Council members are considering the option of dog owners themselves having ownership over dog parks where they correct bad behavior of other dog owners to enforce rules instead of police issuing tickets or warnings.

"If it turns out to be a complete debacle and people don't pick up after their dogs and, you know, we have dogs jumping all over people, we're going to lose opportunities. And so, it's in the best interest of dog owners to really be responsible and take care of, not only their dogs but the messes they leave behind, as well," said councilman Charlie Luke.

They're also talking about residents donating money or finding ways to sponsor dog parks. The Salt Lake City Council said it's hoping to expand opportunities for residents to enjoy outdoor activities with their dogs while minimizing impacts to other people, the environment and Salt Lake City’s budget.

Tanner Park in Millcreek is a popular off-leash park for dogs. But it's getting crowded. The city council hopes to expand that park and continue to set aside land to create more off-leash parks for dogs in Salt Lake City, including using space at city parks.