Dog Park controversy unleashed

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A large portion of Redd Hills Park located on Fountain View Lane and Redd Hills Parkway could be become a fenced off dog park. A large part of the park abuts the upscale high-end La Scala neighborhood in the background. Photo by Barbara Ellestad.

A large portion of Redd Hills Park located on Fountain View Lane and Redd Hills Parkway could be become a fenced off dog park. A large part of the park abuts the upscale high-end La Scala neighborhood in the background. Photo by Barbara Ellestad.

Converting a grassy open area neighborhood park to a chain-link fenced off dog park has drawn the ire of nearby residents, some of whom voiced their opposition at the Mesquite City Council technical review meeting on Tuesday, June 21.

The city proposes to convert a large portion of the Redd Hills Park located on Fountain View Lane and Redd Hills Parkway to four areas of fenced facilities for off-leash dog runs. A large part of the park abuts the upscale high-end La Scala neighborhood.

“What you are trying to do to our neighborhood makes me sick,” one woman told the city council and mayor at the tech review meeting. “The dog park on Second South Street is an eyesore and looks horrible,” she said about the Jensen Trailside park that’s set aside as a dog park.

The proposed facility will create two small dog areas, one large dog area and one open off-leash area that add up to approximately 26,500 square feet. It will also include two large dog underground waste receptacles and two water stations for people to clean their animals.

The city estimates it will cost $30,000 to create the park with funds coming from the 2016-17 capital improvement fund.

Some of the people opposed to the idea said it would lower property values in nearby neighborhoods, create traffic problems, destroy the grass and make the area smelly from excrement. One man said it would make one of the nicest parks in the city an ugly area. “You can’t make a fence look pretty,” he said.

As a compromise, one resident suggested the city create a dog park in an empty area near the Animal Control Shelter on Hardy Way. He suggested that location would make it convenient for dog owners in the area and also those who live in Sun City Mesquite.

Another man referenced a previous meeting held between the city and local residents some of whom live in Sun City saying “They don’t have a dog park up there now so they want to create one down here. We should enforce the rules we have now” regarding lease laws.

Included in the backup material for the agenda item that will be heard at the regular city council meeting on June 28 are petitions against the proposal that include 100 signatures.

The petition created by local residents says in part “Dogs are already allowed to be in the park, but must be on leashes, according to the Clark County dog leash ordinance. The purpose for the ordinance is for the public’s safety. A small group of selfish people (about 10) who do not want to comply with the leash ordinance are trying to get the City to modify the park for their convenience without regard for the people who live and own homes in the area. These people violate the ordinance daily.

“There is already a dog park in the City on South Second St. Also, the City does have other alternatives for building an additional dog park that would not have a negative impact on the local home owners.

“The negative effects on our neighborhood would be an increase in the noise from barking dogs, an increase in traffic, the continuous smell of dog feces and an unsightly detriment to the value of our neighborhood property values.

“The grass within the enclosure would soon be gone and we would end up with a large chain link barren enclosure in our neighborhood. It would eventually limit the use of the park to only dog owners who do not want to put their dogs on leashes. This would be a detriment to the value of our properties.”

One resident who attended Tuesday’s technical review meeting spoke in favor of the dog park saying “it’s important to have a park dedicated to pets for them to socialize with other animals. I understand the opposition but this is a good addition.”

“I won’t take my dog to a dog park because she doesn’t like other dogs sniffing her butt,” another resident told the councilors. “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it.”

The issue will have a public hearing at Tuesday’s city council meeting during which residents can voice their opinions regarding the issue before it’s decided upon.

Comments

  1. Grandma Jan says:

    A dog park only works IF the owners clean up after their pets. Having the bags and a trash bin available for the owners encourages that. AND, I know of one dog park in Sun City. It is located across the street from my friends house, a corner lot. Actually, there are two that I know of. If the park in question is being utilized by families, then I don’t think it is fair of the City to take that away. There aren’t enough things here in Mesquite for families/kids/teens to enjoy. So why take that away? Not surprised, though. I remember reading an article about a woman being arrested for feeding the ducks at the lake across from the Grapevine.

  2. Stop wasting tax dollars on this nonsense. The dog park will be nothing but a smelly area and unsightly. Let dog owners fend for themselves. Doesn’t any city worker or elected official have the backbone to say NO?

    • Bill Parker says:

      You have no idea about this issue. Otherwise you would not have made the comment you did.

    • rosalyn coldiron says:

      I can’t believe that some residents have such a narrow view of the citizens of Mesquite! Of course we pick up after ourselves and others because we are responsible dog owners! Redd Hills Park has ZERO dog poop. The grounds are patrolled daily for anything that resembles ‘poop’. It is the cleanest park on this matter. I can only hope that the city officials have the backbone to say ‘yes’, to accommodate the wonderful citizens of Mesquite and their furry friends.

      • rosalyn coldiron says:

        FYI
        Property values do not decrease because of dog parks, they increase. According to major poles from many cities across the United States property values increase due to community amenities such as dog parks. Dog parks have a positive effect on neighborhoods; decrease in crime, accommodate seniors and the disabled who cannot always walk their dogs on leash, discourage delinquent and criminal activity in parks, encourage people to exercise and stimulate social interaction with others, promote good canine physical health and socialization, reducing nuisance behaviors and making dogs better canine citizens.

    • This is absolutely insane for the city to spend $30000.00 (per city web site) plus the high maintenance of a dog park. All one has to do is look at the Dog Park on Second St. to see the future. This park will end up just like that one and the people will move to another open area in town. They will move because of social disagreements, park upkeep, dog manners, injury to their dog, and most of all disease spread from other dogs. Surly the city can put taxpayer money to work for more than a few unhappy dog owners. Mr. Parker might want to check ADA rules on leash laws; dogs cannot just be turned loose.

  3. I agree when I moved down here i went to take my dogs down to the doggie park several times and It was a pig sty every time. I don’t go there anymore people don’t pick up their dog shit and the city will not water it or take care of it either. I vote NO.

    • Bill Parker says:

      Vote yes and see the difference!

    • rosalyn coldiron says:

      The Redd Hills Park is a beautiful park that has been frequented for years by dogs and dog owners. On any given day there is no excrement to be found on the grounds. Since I have joined the morning group of responsible dog owners, I have joined the daily patrol for any ‘left-over remnants’ that could be lurking about. The park is impeccably clean and will continue to be so despite the false accusations of a select ‘few’ who do not wish the dogs to frequent the grounds. I have been to many parks and assure anyone that this is a safe place to take their furry doggie friends. The people of Mesquite need more parks they can feel ‘at home’ in and to socialize with other residents and pets. It is true we do not have many places to socialize, and when we can take our pets with us, it makes a much more stronger community bonding experience. Being a community of numerous elderly and handicapped individuals, we should all be more compassionate with each other and offer solutions instead of discontent.

  4. Bill Parker says:

    represent a small group of Mesquite citizens and their dogs that utilize the Redd Hills Public Park almost every morning between 8:30 am and 10:30 am. Many that live near the Redd Hills Park. Most all of us moved to Mesquite because of the low crime rate, a well managed city and close to a variety of outdoor activities that surround our city. One of the most attractive things about Mesquite is the fact that we have found Mesquite to be very dog friendly. In fact Mesquite promotes itself as being Dog friendly, additionally to Animal Control being very professional, fair and understanding towards the people I am representing. Most all of us have been coming to the Redd Hills Park for over four years with our dogs without any issues. It is very close to where we live in Mesquite in addition to several people that live around the park also. As an accommodation we have always been allowed to let the dogs run free unless a park visitor asked us to put them on a leash which we agreed and were glad to do.
    Issues: About a year ago a man brought a young playful but large German Shepherd to the Redd Hills Park and let him run off leash. This created a problem for one resident of the surrounding neighborhood. I personally asked that dog owner to keep the Shepherd on a leash or don’t keep coming to the park because Animal Control came to deal with the Shepherd almost everyday. Since that individual has taken his Shepherd elsewhere. Even after this issue was resolved some of the residence around the Redd Hills Park have called Animal Control on a daily basis whether our dogs were on a leash or not. Several dog owners can’t place their small dogs on a leash due to disability utilizing devices that prevent them from using a leash. They are covered under federal ADA Laws. Other owners at times place their dogs on a leash but allow them to walk close to them under their control. I have placed my dog on a 100 ft tether so he can run and catch a frisbee yet some homeowners still call animal control. I have placed him on this tether under NV Statute 574.100. I am a 100% Combat Disabled Veteran.
    2
    Last month there was a meeting at the Park with City Officials, the Mayor and
    Animal control. I asked for this meeting to show them our small dog owner group
    and how we watch out for each other and each others dogs and clean up after
    our dogs or for those that can’t due to disability as the were off leach.
    During this meeting at the Park I counted 12 homeowners that live around the
    Redd Hills Park at the meeting. I heard as I believe some City Personnel also
    heard statements by these individuals the following:
     This is our neighborhood you don’t belong here.
     I am going to hire an attorney to keep you out of our park
     Cheese with rat poison is effective
     Just wait until our Judge gets back in town he will fix this
     This is our park go use another
     Where do you live
     Take your dogs to another park
     You people are not welcome here
     This park belongs to our Lakeview II subdivision
     Your dogs are not licensed to be here.
     None of you pick up after your dogs.
     How would you like it if we brought our dogs to where you live.
     I am going to call Animal control everyday until you don’t come here
    anymore.
    I want to is Redd Hills Park Public property? Don’t we all pay Taxes to enjoy
    OUR parks no matter where they are?
    It is my opinion and I truly believe that this is no longer about dogs. But about the
    homeowners simply do not want us or anybody else for that matter to utilize this
    park. I believe they feel it is a green space/area just for them and their use.
    3
    Therefore We request that a Redd Hills Park be authorized as a run free park on
    this side of the City so dogs can run free and for those under the Federal ADA to
    enjoy their dogs without threat of citation for being off leash. Or We ask that the
    homeowners living around this public park to stop their harassment of us and
    wasting city resources regarding false reports of dogs running loose or allowed to
    be loose when under voice command and control under Federal ADA Law for
    those that use devices to walk or have other medical apparatuses that prevent
    them to use a leach.
    Lastly We have also learned that petitions are being processed by some
    homeowners living around Redd Hills Park made into a NO DOG Allowed park
    and prevent a fence from being built for the dogs to run free in the dimensions
    required.
    We ask the city to dismiss these petitions and approve this request for a fenced
    dog park at Redd Hills Park.

    • Lassie's bro says:

      WHO MADE YOU MAYOR?
      Go buy a house with a big yard or go out to scenic where anything goes.
      Parks are for humans and kids- i do not want to pay or subsidize a dog park.
      Here is a idea- take your dogs to run the median on hwy 15

      • Rita Smith says:

        Kids do more damage than dogs. I bought my home in a neighborhood 14 years ago where there were no kids. Since then lots have moved into my neighborhood, they kick all the rocks out into the street, tear up the landscaping while they wait for the school bus. I have seen them trashing my neighbors trees by hanging on them or hitting them with sticks. As for me I’ll take dogs over kids any day.

      • rosalyn coldiron says:

        I’m sorry for the comments made here. A city park should be for all to enjoy. As long as the children and pets are not misbehaving I see that there should not be a problem.

      • Bill Parker says:

        I thought you took your dogs to run on I-15. Meet me at the Park and say that to my Face sissy!

  5. Bill Parker says:

    Actually many of those complaining about the 5 people who every morning bring their dogs to the Redd Hills Park to play are being victimized by those residence that feel this area/Park is theirs. If they did not complain about 5 or six dogs that weigh less than 40 pounds offends them, then move to an area where there is no public park to bother them. What we have here is a failure to communicate. We all pay taxes in this city and I am going to bring my dog to the Redd Hills Park everyday with or without a fence.
    Get use to it!!!

  6. Dave Compton says:

    Having a dog is a commitment and all responsible dog owners are aware of that. It includes picking up after their dogs, and other basic dog etiquette. It sounds as if the waste and water stations are a good start. Most dog owners would mention to others if they didn’t clean up after their pets. I believe a happy medium could be worked out.

    • rosalyn coldiron says:

      I agree. Dog owners in general clean up after their dogs and encourage other to do so.

  7. Lassie's bro says:

    Here is a good idea-
    I am all for the park- love dogs.
    Name it LITMAN DOG PARK.
    that way when it deteriorates ,starts smelling crappy, crap piles up and no one takes care of it- does nothing – THE NAME WILL BE APPROPRIATE!
    MUCH LIKE OUR CURRANT MAYOR AND COUNCIL!

    • Bill Parker says:

      The only smells near the Redd Hills park come from goose crap and the irrigation channel filled with goose crap. Additionally the Large Garbage can that the residence use in the Park stinks because they place their Crap in it rather than disposing of it properly. Don’t blame the Dogs or their owners. Blame those that created the problem to begin with.

    • concerned resident says:

      Ignorant would be an understatement. Your comments show your character, lack of a proper upbringing, and probably a third grade education. Thrash like you should not live in this fine city.

  8. Bill Parker says:

    “The negative effects on our neighborhood would be an increase in the noise from barking dogs, an increase in traffic, the continuous smell of dog feces and an unsightly detriment to the value of our neighborhood property values.

    “The grass within the enclosure would soon be gone and we would end up with a large chain link barren enclosure in our neighborhood. It would eventually limit the use of the park to only dog owners who do not want to put their dogs on leashes. This would be a detriment to the value of our properties.”

    This Statement is an overblown, overzealous, selfish statement. Not true and does not happen. Tell the truth or shut up!! Petitions and Politicians that take them to heart are for FOOLS!!!

    • Lassie's bro says:

      Bill
      You and your dog should move out to the country
      I am not subsidizing your dog – it is a people park – not a dog dirt park
      Who cares if you are a veteran- that has nothing to do with the issue.
      Go subsidize your own dog

      • rosalyn coldiron says:

        My apologies for this un-american reply. All veterans should be honored as they protect our country and the inhabitants. I care about veterans and what they have done for my country!
        I care! But back to the subject of having a dog friendly park, especially for veterans, I only hope that the City of Mesquite will make the right decision and allow the leash-free area for dogs and their veteran owners to use, no matter what part of the city they live.

      • Bill Parker says:

        All Parks in mesquite are dog friendly. You don’t pay taxes anyway Bro!

  9. dont want to share says:

    i dont know about a dog park if you want to let your dog run off leash and not have to pickup the poop just bring your dogs to smokey lanes we have atleast 10 dogs that run off leash and the owners dont pivkup after them and the animal control never does anything about it

  10. Neighbor says:

    BP, thank you for your service to our country. I live nearby the park and go by it daily, I don’t want to see a fence built around it and have it zoned for pets. I feel it detracts from the neighborhood and no matter the fence style it would offend someone. There is already a “dog park” please use it. Not all pet owners are irresponsible but, enough are that dog poo can be found near every walking path in the city and on the sole of tennis shoes everywhere. We used to go toss a frisbee or a football around in that park…not anymore because of irresponsible pet owners who will not clean up behind their pets.

    • Bill Parker says:

      Actually the City made this decision to look a placing a fence around the Redd Hills Park. This was because of all the complaints without merit regarding the dogs and their owners. We don’t want a fence either. But the unwarranted complains need to stop. Those complaining about nothing caused the City to look at fencing in the Park. I don’t care if they fence it or not. Blame those lying, selfish resident complainers that created this mess!

  11. Jennifer says:

    Lassie’s bro needs to put his real name to his hateful comments or get out of the conversation. Bullies are always cowards.

  12. In my little Nebraska hometown the city council resisted creating a dog park but finally did after a group of volunteers lobbied for over a year. The volunteers did 90% of the work, home depot donated the fence. Now it is the most utilized park in the city and nearby residents gather there each morning to visit while their dogs romp and get healthy activity. Excrement has never been a problem.

  13. geetarmamma says:

    Dog owners are very conscientious for the most part especially at a park..no one wants their dog to play in poop let alone step in it themselves. I think one of the real issues here is that some residents do not want dogs or people or any traffic at the park near their home. Some have a feeling of private ownership of Redd Hills Park. And it is a city park open to the public. Shame on vile comments that cannot lead to anything good. I have faith that the Mayor and City Council will find a compromise in this matter and satisfy all residents that this situation affects.