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Council Agrees to Provide Pets a Place to Run

Local Group Now Plans Fund-Raiser to Pay for Fencing In a Portion of Yorba Park


Dog owners in Orange celebrated a long-awaited victory Tuesday when the City Council agreed to create a place for unleashed dogs at Yorba Park, giving pet lovers the official backing needed to forge ahead with fund-raising and planning for the project.

The council's 5-0 nod of approval caps the association's nearly two-year fight for a dog park closer to home. Now dog owners must drive to the nearest one in Costa Mesa, or risk a citation if they let their pets off the leash in city parks.

Already, members of the Orange Dog Park Assn. have plans to sell T-shirts and raffle off prizes at the International Street Fair in early September to meet their goal of $15,000, which would pay to fence in a nearly two-acre area for pets to run and play unleashed, said Rick Cryder, association co-organizer.

"As a taxpayer, I want to be able to have recreation for my pet and a place for him to socialize with other pets," Cryder said.

When the dog park becomes reality depends upon the association's fund-raising success. The association has agreed to bear all costs of creating the dog park on a flat slice of land in eight-acre Yorba Park, which has remained largely unused in recent years, said Gabe Garcia, community services manager.

So far, the association has raised about $3,000, Cryder said.

Although fencing and lighting are the dog park's most immediate needs, association members envision monthly educational activities, a memorial to police dogs killed in the line of duty and a "Doggy Walk of Fame," in which owners can honor their pets by buying sidewalk tiles.

The association also hopes to put the Orange dog park on the map by hosting canine agility competitions that draw pet lovers from all over the country, Cryder said.

"We're just very, very excited. We feel the community will benefit totally from this effort," he added.


Renee Moilanen can be reached at (714) 966-4674.

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