Ten years ago, the Lowell Dog Park was developed with the support of the Animal Hospital of Lowell. While that practice no longer exists, Arrow Veterinary Clinic has stepped in to ensure the park will continue to be maintained for years to come.
“The city donated the land for the dog park, but [it] doesn’t put forth any money to maintain it,” says Eva Carey, a volunteer with the Lowell Dog Park. She estimates it costs nearly $1,400 a year to mow the grass, provide water and light the park.
The Arrow Veterinary Clinic sponsorship will ensure these expenses are covered and that the park remains open to area residents and their four-legged friends.
“We feel that the dog park is a vital part of the Lowell community, and we want it to remain an option for community members,” says Sara Karasinski, practice manager for Arrow Veterinary Clinic. “Dog parks offer space for both owners and dogs to get fresh air, exercise and socialization; all of which help reduce stress and improve quality of life.”
While the sponsorship will help cover ongoing expenses, Carey notes that there is also a need for donations from the public to make park enhancements. “We would like to work on getting a shelter in the small dog area,” she explains. Visitors to the Lowell Dog Park can help with this and other improvements by leaving a contribution in the donation pole that can be found under the gazebo in the big dog area.
For those who have not yet visited the Lowell Dog Park, it can be found off Bowes Road near Stoney Lakeside Park. The dog park shares its parking lot with a neighboring skateboard park. The park includes two fenced areas – one for large dogs and a second for small dogs – where animals can run off their leashes.
While dogs can be off-leash in the Lowell Dog Park, Karasinski suggests keeping a leash handy in case dogs need to be separated for any reason. “Pay attention and keep an eye on your dog,” she says. “Cell phones should be left in the car or put away while your dog is off-leash.”
All canine visitors to the park should be properly vaccinated, and it is usually best to leave favorite treats and toys at home, lest they cause conflict between dogs. Animals that are in-heat shouldn’t be taken to the park, and owners are asked to pick up after their dog to ensure a pleasant experience for everyone.
Karasinski also recommends having an emergency plan whenever you take your dog out. “This should include a copy of your dog’s vaccination record and phone numbers to your veterinarian as well as the nearest emergency vet clinic,” she notes.
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