Addy Simons walked her dog briskly around Woodward Park.
No matter how much space was in front of her the 4-year-old golden retriever named Cosmo pulled at the leash to try and get there even faster.
Simons said she can hardly wait until Cosmo will have his own space allowing him to run with wild abandon.
“I heard that the council finally approved the dog park and that it’s going to be put behind City Hall,” Simons said. “I kind of wish that they would have kept it here because it’s right by my house, but as you can tell he needs some room so I’ll gladly take him wherever he wants so he can run some of this energy off.”
While some of Manteca’s dog park supporters had pets that they were hoping would get the chance to utilize the new feature pass away before it was actually constructed, Simons said she’s been waiting for more than two years after moving here from the foothills. When Cosmo was just a puppy, Simons said, there was plenty of room in the backyard for him to work out all of his energy.
Now that he’s older, she wants to make sure that he gets all of the exercise that he needs.
“We used to have a lab that never really went outside – she was more of an indoor dog – and eventually she developed hip dysplasia that the lab said could have been prevented if she would have exercised more,” she said. “I don’t want that to happen with Cosmo so I’m really glad that he’s going to have a space soon.”
Earlier this week the Manteca City Council voted to use the vacant space behind the Manteca Parks and Recreation building to house the city’s first dog park – ending a multiple-year period where funding, regulations and ultimately location ended up delaying something that the council initially approved some time ago.
Had storm water regulations not tightened, Simons would be able to use her neighboring Woodward Park, the original site that the council approved and allocated money for. When budgets were cut due to shortfalls that project was derailed, and it took a major blow when restrictions on animal waste in and around storm water retention basins prompted the entire site to be scrapped.
John Quinell said that while he doesn’t have a dog, he regularly looks after his son’s and is looking forward to spending time in a place where “Bo” can go and run with other dogs in a space specially designed for him.
“I like taking him for walks when my son is out of town,” Quinell said. “It has made me think about getting a dog of my own. And now that I am going to have a place to take him I’m really considering that.”
Because the space for the new dog park is technically the same land that the City of Manteca has been sitting on for an expansion of the city complex, there’s a possibility that the new site will only be temporary – featuring fences, signage and infrastructure that can be moved in the event that the land were to be reclaimed.
Because the site already exists, planners believe that they can save more than $100,000 over building on bare property elsewhere.