City of Canning defers decision on off-lead dog areas

Stock image.
Stock image.

DOG owners in Canning Vale will have to wait until September for City of Canning to decide on whether any more parks in the suburb will be made off-lead dog exercise areas.

After protracted discussions at last week’s council meeting, councillors voted to defer a decision on whether to make Akania Park, Connaught Park and Kinnerton Gardens off-lead dog exercise areas.

Former chief executive of the Dogs’ Refuge in Shenton Park, councillor Patrick Hall, said there were more than 600 registered dogs in Canning Vale owned by more than 600 dog owners.

He said of the 68 dog exercise areas in the City, only one existed in Canning Vale and it was in the remote kennel zone that was “practically inaccessible” to residents.

“The City has an obligation under the Dog Act to provide a sufficient number of off-lead areas for owners to exercise those dogs and is not currently doing so,” Cr Hall said.

“Canning Vale pet owners deserve the same consideration that residents in the remainder of Canning have enjoyed for decades and I intend to stand up for these residents and also speak on behalf of animal welfare.”

Cr Hall asked why the six-month trial had not been allowed to run its course, with the City making recommendations to the council three months into the trial.

“The integrity of the council means we really should be of our word and carry through with a six-month trial,” he said.

Ranford Primary School principal Bronwyn Tester spoke at the council’s agenda briefing meeting earlier this month, raising concerns about the recommendation that Connaught Park be designated a permanent dog exercise area.

She said the park was next to the school and the school had ongoing issues over several years with people exercising their dogs off-leash on the school oval.

City officers said written and verbal responses were received from 75 households, with 48 residents not in favour of their local park being designated a dog exercise area.

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