We’ve all seen signs that say “No Dogs Allowed.” But “No Kids Allowed”? That’s exactly what is about to happen in Arlington County’s dog parks. Arlington County plans to ban kids under 8, and require an adult to accompany kids 8 to 14. Some find the ban unnecessary, while others find this a very appropriate ending to National Dog Bite Prevention Week.
The Examiner’s story by Gwyn Donahue gives details about a Shirlington Community Canine Area meeting from yesterday, and notes that neighboring jurisdictions also have rules about kids in dog parks. Fairfax bans kids 8 and under from its dog parks, requires adult supervision for kids 9 to 15, and requires handlers to be at least 16. Alexandria requires adults to supervise kids under 16 inside fenced areas of its dog parks.
Another story by Arlington Kids questions the reason for the ban, and concern about the fact that it seems the County has made its mind up already without much public input. WUSA News9 has posted a story and video about the controversy, and cites concerns not just of dog bites, but also unintentional injuries such as a child being knocked over accidentally while up to 100 dogs run around off leash at any given time in Arlington’s busiest dog park.
If you would like to be heard, you can contact the Arlington County Department of Parks and Recreations Division Chief through the County’s Contact Us page or at (703) 228-6523 or -6525. And feel free to weigh in on the issue here!