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The Greenways and Urban Tree Committee of the Parks, Recreation and Greenway Advisory Board is reviewing the potential prohibition of dogs and other pets from certain areas within City of Raleigh parks. The committee is seeking public input from residents on the issue at its meeting on Wednesday, May 22 at 6 p.m. in Room 303 of the Avery C. Upchurch Government Complex at 222 W. Hargett Street.

The item was added to the board’s work plan by the Raleigh City Council last year. The issue originated from both direct public concern and information provided by City staff. The department has received calls from citizens concerned about pet waste on athletic fields and playgrounds throughout the parks system citing the potential public health risk. Citizens also have voiced concern over the potential interaction between dogs and children in City playgrounds.

Residents frequently unleash their dogs on open park grounds allowing them to roam beyond their sight and control, presenting the opportunity for pets to interact unrestricted with other park patrons. Citizens also use fenced playgrounds, athletic fields and court areas as dog parks – allowing pets to run unleashed within the fenced area. Currently, City staff members observing these activities have been instructed to remind patrons of the applicable city codes. City code requires pet owners to remove and dispose of pet waste. In addition, City code prohibits unleashed dogs on public property with the exception of our designated dog parks.

The Greenways and Urban Tree Committee will review the issue taking into consideration citizen input as well as management practices of other jurisdictions and park systems before making a recommendation to the full Parks, Recreation, and Greenway Advisory Board.

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