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Canine conversations: Help Vancouver Park Board discover the best ways for people and dogs to share parks

September 8 2016

"We are eager to hear from park users about what works and what doesn’t in terms of dogs in parks. The goal is to create welcoming and well-designed areas for people with and without dogs,” said Vancouver Park Board Chair Sarah Kirby-Yung.

The Vancouver Park Board is beginning a city-wide dialogue this week on how residents can best share park space and amenities with four-legged friends.

The Board is launching the first round of public consultation for People, Parks & Dogs: A strategy for sharing Vancouver’s parks.

Well designed parks

“We want Vancouver’s parks carefully planned and designed to support a diversity of uses. We are eager to hear from park users about what works and what doesn’t in terms of dogs in parks. The goal is to create welcoming and well-designed areas for people with and without dogs,” said Vancouver Park Board Chair Sarah Kirby-Yung.

As in many North American cities, Vancouver’s dog population is growing and there is greater pressure on parks and public spaces. With population growth and increased density, the Park Board is developing a comprehensive strategy to guide how parks can be used by people and dogs.

Various ways to participate in consultation

The Board is asking residents what is important to them when it comes to safety, maintenance, location and design of dog off-leash areas. The first round of consultation starts this week and concludes October 14th.

Residents can participate in the consultation both online and in-person, including a series of drop-in open houses throughout the city.

An advisory group comprised of dog owners, residents without dogs, industry representatives, seniors, cyclists, community gardeners and environmental groups is providing input on the development of the strategy.

Final report to Board in spring 2017

The strategy will provide a framework for well-designed parks that strive to accommodate a broad range of park users and minimize conflict. A final report with recommendations will go to the Board in spring 2017.

The project team will consider public feedback, as well as information gathered from technical analysis and best practices research to develop preliminary recommendations regarding the planning, design and management of Vancouver's dog off-leash areas. Residents and stakeholders will have the opportunity to provide feedback on these recommendations during the second round of public consultation in early 2017.

Visit the dog strategy webpage