DE PERE, Wis. (WFRV) A city of De Pere policy restricting dogs from most parks is under review. And as Kris Schuller reports the public is being asked to share their thoughts through an online survey.
De Pere resident Jim Kneiszel loves to take the dogs he fosters out for long walks. But he has to keep to the sidewalk when by a park because in De Pere most parks are off limits to dogs.
“We just think it’s time that all the parks are opened up to people who want to pass through with their dogs,” said Kneiszel.
So Kneiszel, who’s also a Brown County supervisor, recently asked the city’s Parks Board to reconsider the ban and allow leashed dogs in city parks. He says it’s a policy used in similar communities like Ashwaubenon and Allouez.
“No problems reported at any of those places. I think it’s a trend and it’s something we need to get on board with here,” Kneiszel said.
A request that De Pere Parks Director Marty Kosobucki, is currently digging into.
“Active recreation and dogs don’t always mix, so there is hesitation to allow dogs right away without some kind of research and community input,” said Marty Kosobucki.
So, the city has posted a survey on their Facebook page asking residents what they think. The options are – keep the policy the same, allow dogs in all parks or allow dogs in all parks – unless they have a recreation field. Up just a few weeks over 300 people have responded and their opinions are expected to play a significant role in any decision.
“What the right answer is I think, what it comes down to, is what does the community, specific community you’re in, what do they want,” Kosobucki said.
“There are going to be a few people who are afraid it will infringe on picnickers and sports activities – but if handled properly it wouldn’t be an issue,” Kneiszel said.
The De Pere Parks Board will consider next steps in November. You can find the survey by following this link.