Playgrounds have been shown to be excellent for the development of children. But what about parks for dogs? Obviously, they provide a place for dogs to run free and exercise, but how else are they beneficial for the community? Check out our top 5 reasons your park needs a dog park.
1. First, there are proven physical benefits. Dogs and dog walking provide health benefits linked to a decrease in risk of cardiovascular diseases (i.e. hypertension, high cholesterol). Stress and lack of exercise are two of the leading causes of these diseases. Pets have been shown to have a relaxing effect on the humans that surround them and push their owners to go out and exercise.
2. Dog parks can also be a tool of accessibility. For older people and people with disabilities who may not be able to walk their dogs, dog parks are a safe place for them to go and exercise their dogs.
3. In addition to this, dog parks also provide areas where owners can socialize. In most families, dogs are seen as companions, best friends, and family. Therefore, dog parks provide recreational opportunities and bring together dog lovers, individuals of all ages, and individuals of diverse socioeconomic status, bringing the community closer together.
4. Dog parks can be seen as social and economic capital catalysts. These green, open spaces bring people “out and about” by promoting walkable neighborhoods and a strong sense of community. If this effect happens in a commercial area, the traffic near local businesses would increase.
5. Finally, dog parks can be a source of protection for the area. A positive effect of the visible presence of individuals walking with their dogs generates an increased feeling of collective safety in the neighborhood.