Accessible Dog Park

Jul 06, 2011
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With the new Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessibility laws issued in January of this year, places such as the T.W. Patterson Sports Complex Dog Park is taking a pro-active approach. Without any complaints or lawsuits pending from community members, the park district felt the need to make the dog park accessible to everyone. Additionally, the new ADA accessibility laws are stricter. The city has also learned that there have been a number of facilities shut down in other cities due to litigation and the city wanted to avoid a similar action in Patterson.

Currently, the dog park is closed until the city can upgrade it to accommodate people with disabilities. The city plans to add an accessibility pathway from the baseball diamonds to the dog park, move the dog drinking fountain and add an a bench for park users. Wheelchair-accessible parking spaces will be created in the undeveloped area at the north end of the park.

The T.W. Patterson Sports Complex dog park was built in 2003 by Boy Scout Troop 533, led by member Travis Buehner, who created Patterson’s dog run as his Eagle Scout project. In 2008, Marlena Cardinal of the group, Friends of Sophia’s Dog Park acquired grants from Purina Dog Chow, the Petco Foundation, and United Way of Stanislaus County to install stairs, a rest station, a ramp, hurdles, tunnels and several tire hoops that were donated by Big O Tires.

Adrienne Chaney, the Parks and Recreation Director “We recognized that we’re deficient in this area and need to fix,” Chaney said. “Our chief building official, Jim Swanson, is very focused on accessibility and told us we needed to fix it right away.”

Below are some Accessible Dog Parks in the U.S.
Alice’s Dog Park – Pasadena, CA
Arbor Dog Park – Seal Beach, CA
Bark Park at Snyder Park – Fort Lauderdale, FL
Barkyard-LaSalle Off-Leash Dog Park – Buffalo, NY
Bastrop Bark Park – Bastrop, TX
Bear Creek Dog Park – Colorado Springs, CO

To find an accessible dog park, go to:
http://www.dogpark.com/index.html

Author: Jenny Carlton