A community’s interest in a dog park may be initiated in several ways. It often takes the action of just a few residents, usually dog owners or dog lovers, who may write a letter to a city council, stop by the local parks and recreation department to talk, or show up at a municipal meeting to express their interest in a public setting.
This professional guide presents best practices for park and recreation
professionals and others interested in creating a community dog park.
From concept to completion, you’ll get step-by-step instructions on
creating a great off-leash facility. It also discusses related topics
such as location considerations, community benefits, design options,
maintenance concerns, amenities, suggested rules, and program
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In Dog ParkDesign, Development, and Operation you’ll learn how to make your dog park a reality from concept to opening celebration and beyond. Find step-by-step guidance plus information on location considerations, community benefits, maintenance concerns, design options, amenities, suggested rules, and even program opportunities. More than 90 photos from dog parks across the United States illustrate the various equipment, features, and programming that make dog parks an asset in any community.
Author Marilynn R. Glasser, an experienced dog park consultant, shares her insight into some of the challenges and resistance you might encounter in developing a dog park—and their possible solutions. Her often humorous experiences illustrate the importance of following best practices when developing your community dog park.
As a source of proven processes, Dog ParkDesign, Development, and Operation offers guidance on creating a facility as well as information on management, maintenance, marketing, and evaluation. With photos and insightful stories of the author’s experiences, Dog Park Design, Development, and Operation can help you create a professional-quality community facility filled with smiling faces and wagging tails.
Chapter 1. Why Build a Dog Park?
Our dogs are so important to us. Dog parks provide a unique opportunity for a community’s many dog owners to recreate in a safe, enjoyable outdoor environment with their friends—both canine and human!
Chapter 2. Making the Case
No matter how excited you are about a dog park, you can be sure that some people will not share the enthusiasm. With patience and positive education, you can address concerns and highlight the advantages of the planned park!
Chapter 3. Planning
Let’s get the dog park started! You’ll need to garner support, select a site, and much more.
Chapter 4. Components
How does a space become a dog park? Find out which components you need to build your dog park right!
Chapter 5. Landscaping and Maintenance
Little effort is needed to keep the dog park in good shape. Find out how to maximize your park’s aesthetics and appeal, making it attractively user friendly for all!
Chapter 6. Dog Park Rules and Etiquette
Your dog park will bring together all kinds of people and dogs in one place! Learn how to establish rules and guidelines that will bring out the best behavior in everyone.
Chapter 7. The Grand Opening
A grand dog park deserves a grand opening! Find out how to celebrate your new park’s introduction in style.
Chapter 8. Evaluation: Concerns, Problems, and Solutions for Success
The new dog park is up and running! How’s it going? Ongoing evaluation is an important part of ensuring the dog park remains valuable to the community.
Chapter 9. Marketing and Programming
Don’t let your dog park be your community’s best-kept secret! Find out how to keep interest alive and growing!
About the Author
Resource for park, recreation, and leisure professionals or anyone
charged with planning a dog park. Reference for professors of park,
recreation, and leisure studies for use in courses on facility
management or programming.
Marilynn R. Glasser, EdD, CPRP, CPSI, is an adjunct assistant
professor at Herbert H. Lehman College in Bronx, New York, and has more
than 30 years of experience teaching recreation, parks, and leisure
services courses. She received her master’s degree in community and
outdoor recreation from Springfield College and her doctorate in
recreation services and resource management from New York University.
Dr. Glasser is a certified park and recreation professional, playground
safety inspector, and early childhood outdoor play inspector. She earned
the New York State public school teacher permanent certification.
She is a longtime member of the National Recreation and Park
Association, the New York State Recreation and Park Society, and the
Westchester Recreation and Park Society; she has earned numerous
professional awards and certificates from these organizations. Dr.
Glasser worked in municipal recreation and parks administration from
1977 to 2005.
Dr. Glasser is the president of Parks and Pastimes, Inc., a recreation,
park, and leisure services consulting firm specializing in dog parks,
playground safety and education, and training. She has been a speaker on
a variety of professional topics at local, state, and national
association conferences and has authored numerous articles for
professional publications. Dr. Glasser conducts playground safety
supervision training programs for elementary schools, child care
providers, and parks and recreation departments. She also conducts
high-frequency playground inspection training programs for parks and
In her free time, Dr. Glasser likes to play golf, fish, collect
antiques, play guitar, and reminisce about the 1950s. She loves animals
(particularly dogs and cats), nature, classic automobiles, art deco, and
outdoor events such as flea markets, art shows, and concerts.