Eight New Dog Parks Planned

The Oceanfront Loop Trail, above, is one of the unofficial, off-leash dog parks, in Squamish. Photo: Gagandeep Ghuman

By Gagandeep Ghuman
Published: Dec. 22, 2012

District of Squamish hopes to designate eight sites in town as dog-friendly and off-leash dog areas.

Some like the Eagle Wind and Willow Park would have a fenced off-leash park, while others, like Judd Beach and Merrill Park, would have designated dog-friendly trails.

These will be phased out in the next four years.

The district is currently seeking input through its Parks and Recreation Master plan to find out where Squamish would like its off-leash and designated dog parks to be.

District also plans to launch an information program, within the next year to publicise and promote the use of the dog parks, as well as to discourage the use of undesignated areas.

District spokesperson Christina Moore said there are plans to put aside a budget for information and maintenance of the dog parks.

Opportunities for corporate sponsorship of dog parks will also be pursued by the staff, she added.

Squamish has no designated dog parks, although several unofficial areas, like Nexen Beach are being used by the public.

It has one designated off-leash park, near the tennis court in downtown Squamish, but it’s rarely used.

Moore said typically parks maintenance staff and by-law enforcement officers hear about issues and complaints relating to dogs, particularly in parks and public open space.

City of Victoria has developed a ‘Paws in Parks’ program and 12 designated dog-friendly parks, which provide signage, dispenser stocked with biodegradable doggie bags, and a trash bin.

Animal rights activist Chaya Jorgensen said an increased numbers of off-leash dog parks in Squamish are long overdue.

But, she would like to know what kind of dog parks these would be?

“Are they going to be similar to the mud pit of a park that is in disrepair? Will they be fenced areas to keep the dogs safe from traffic?”

Jorgensen said having off leash areas that are safe, inviting and maintained will benefit the community.

Dog trainer Valley Calderoni said dog parks have the ability to bring communities together, but off-leash areas should be used responsibly to minimize conflict between dogs.

Planned dog parks (Box items)

Glacier View Park (fenced off-leash area)

Willow Park (fenced off-leash area)

Nexen Beach (unfenced dog-friendly designated area)

John Hunter Park (unfenced dog-friendly designated area)

Squamish River and Mamquam River Dykes (specified dog-friendly trails)

Judd Beach (specified dog-friendly trails)

Merrill Park (specified dog-friendly trails)

The Eagle Wind Park (fenced off-leash area)


  1. Dave says:

    A good idea but we need increased random patrols in all residential areas to really help control off- leash dogs.
    It’s getting really bad and it’s not fair on the dogs too. We have a by-law which should be applied. And we should not have to directly report our close neighbours and identify ourselves. Good neighbour rapport is important for so many reasons. If you go away, it is good to be able to have your immediate neighbours look out for you as you would them.

  2. Richard Tripp says:

    Four years to get this done? Did I read that correctly !?!

  3. Jill says:

    Why the need of off leash parks ,very few owners leash them anyways. I live on Tantalus way and walk frequently and as a rule to see a dog on a leash is refreshing as most aren’t. I seen so many off leash I reread the by-law as I thought perhaps they had amended the dog leash rule.

  4. Internet Panther says:

    Great. More places for lazy dog owners to foul up.

  5. Dottie says:

    Firstly, I’m a “pet” lover. Secondly, an owner at Talon at Eaglewind. The park at Eaglewind is NEVER used, however I did take my kittens there once last summer. Unfortunately, many walk their dogs “off-leash”, they defecate on others properties (whereby unsuspecting owners are fined by their Strata due to landscapers having to pick up said defecation) and what… 8 new dog parks planned! Who’s gonna scoop that poop? Dave is spot on for what is needed. Any volunteers to be a patrol? I sport a very large scar on my face due directly to an altercation with a dog whereby I tried to save my kitten from being attacked by an “off-leash” dog. Sadly society is growing more and more inconsiderate of others and it all filters down. But, I digress.

  6. Annette Hernandez says:

    considering I spoke to valley and her lack of knowledge with Squamish bylaws and the fact that her employee has a picture of a pit bull (not attacking pit bulls as I love them) she should be one person who should familiarize herself before comment period and training her staff that dogs ACTUALLY do have emotions not just happy, they feel sad, angry, loved and know when they have done something wrong.

  7. adelaida says:

    The off leash dog park is located on Bailey Street just past 3rd Avenue, at least that’s what the sign says and as I walk about town, it appears that everywhere I go around Squamish looks like it an off leash area. We even have signs on the sidewalk due to the vast amount of dog shit all over ever sidewalk in Squamish that dog owner don’t clean up after their dog(s). As a matter of fact an employee from The Chief Paper had dogs off leash and no where in site when one of the dogs attacked me a took a bite out of the back of my knee, when she finally caught up to my screams, she gave me her name and told me where she worked, I got medical attention for the bite. Wouldn’t have happened if they were on leash as they should have been. Children including my son have been hurt by dogs that where off leash, and that not a good thing.