letter to editor icon 4

letter to editor icon 4

Dog parks in Butte – where are they?

My husband was born and raised in Butte, so naturally he wanted to come back here to retire, which we did four years ago. We have lived all over the United States for the last 25 years. Most of that time we have had hunting dogs, and most of the states we have lived in had community areas where dogs and humans could happily and safely intermingle!

These areas provided a variety of groomed trails, non-groomed woodsy trails, large grassy romping areas, small ponds, benches and picnic areas. In the spring and summer the ponds provided training for our water-loving retrievers. Winter brought the skijorers out to master the snowy trails with their four-legged friends. Our dogs enjoyed the exercise and we enjoyed meeting other canine-loving folks. It was a wonderful community event all year long.

Since moving to Butte, I have found only one dog park, if you can call it that. Yes, it has a pond, but it isn’t available to dogs. The grounds are spacious, but are laden with foxtail grass -– a most dangerous and costly plant to canines (my veterinarian could buy a yacht with the money I have spent removing embedded foxtail from two hunting dogs).

It has a nice walking trail, but this isn’t very helpful for dogs that enjoy running and sniffing for game. At the far end of the park is a small enclosure for dogs that want to run free and play together – whoopee. It might be great for a Pomeranian, but that’s about it. I appreciate the thought.

Any large place that is safe enough for a dog to REALLY run has “No Dogs Allowed” signs posted (soccer fields, football fields, schoolyards, community parks.) And yes, I carry doggy bags and pick up after my pets responsibly.

What gives, Butte? How about turning some of this “reclaimed” mining land into a suitable dog park that will encourage community interaction and involvement? And since I am complaining, I will be the first to volunteer to help build one!

-- Donna Pressler, Butte

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