Calls to establish an off-leash dog park in Sooke have a long history of being ignored. One Sooke resident hopes that the current Council will finally take some action. (file photo)

Sooke council urged to move faster on off-leash dog park plan

Resident questions why five of seven restricted parks are in Sooke

The issue of an off-leash dog park was resurrected at a recent district council meeting when Sooke resident Robert Whittet asked councillors to do something about it.

Whittet recounted how he was “busted” by Capital Regional District bylaw officers on the Sooke portion of the Galloping Goose Trail where he was issued a warning ticket for having his six-month-old puppy off leash.

“There was no one around. It was me, my puppy, and three CRD guys. That’s it. Yet they felt it was necessary to give me a ticket,” Whittet said.

The experience motivated him to delve into the CRD’s regulations on off-leash dogs, and he discovered in the entire CRD there were only seven parks listed as on-leash.

“Of the seven on-leash parks, five are situated in Sooke. That tells me the CRD doesn’t view the people of Sooke to be responsible enough to control their dogs. It’s insulting,” Whittet said.

RELATED: Sooke barks back

It’s an issue that’s been around since 2011 when Sooke municipal staff were directed to work toward the development of an off-leash park. Several more resolutions, pretty much mirroring the 2011 motion continued for another three years, without a park established.

In 2015, Sooke council was again petitioned to establish a dog park, this time in the Ponds Park corridor, off Church Road.

Council reacted to the petition by directing staff to again research the question and conduct a public consultation process.

No dog park was established.

RELATED: More silliness as dog banned for barking

The issue was raised again a year later when the parks and trails advisory committee recommended another public consultation process and then referred the matter to the community development committee. That committee was never struck, and the issue died.

In 2018 when council heard the CRD was implementing new regulations on off-leash dogs in parks, councillors passed another resolution calling for the regional district to reconsider adding a provision to the regional trails management plan to permit 0ff-leash dogs on the Sea-to-Sea Park trails, the Galloping Goose Trail, and the trails and areas surrounding the Sooke River Potholes.

The CRD received that request and ignored it.

But Whittet is hopeful this time around Sooke council may do something about the situation.

“This issue has been around for a long time, and this time out, we are going to keep on it. I agree that Sooke seems to be singled out for the most restrictive off-leash rules in the CRD and that needs to change,”Mayor Maja Tait said.

“We’re starting to see some developments in town where dog parks are being considered, and that’s a good thing as well.”



mailto:tim.collins@sookenewsmirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Hundreds gather at fundraising kickoff for ‘Kings Park’ purchase

Campaign to raise $2.75 million for the District of Saanich underway

Cloudy skies ahead for Thursday

Plus a look ahead at your weekend

Poutine With Purpose Pub Crawl supports local charity

Enjoy a pub favourite while helping to feed local kids

Spooky meets retro at the Victoria Vintage Halloween Fair

It’s never to early to start planning your costume

Health Canada suspends Island pot producer’s licence following unannounced visit

Evergreen Medicinal Supply is working on “corrective action”

Sealand was much more than killer whales, says ex-employee

Former Sealasd trainer revisits Sealand of the Pacific in talk

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for the week of September 17

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Should the province step in to upgrade the road to Bamfield?

The death of two University of Victoria students on a bus bound… Continue reading

35 of 87 dogs in 2018 Williams Lake seizure were euthanized due to behavioural issues, BCSPCA confirm

The dogs did not respond to the behaviour modification and remained terrified of humans

B.C. ‘tent city’ disputes spark call for local government autonomy

UBCM backs Maple Ridge after province overrules city

B.C. drug dealers arrested after traffic stop near Banff turns into helicopter pursuit

Antonio Nolasco-Padia, 23, and Dina Anthony, 55, both well-known to Chilliwack law enforcement

B.C. MLA calls on province to restrict vaping as first related illness appears in Canada

Todd Stone, Liberal MLA for Kamloops-South Thompson, introduced an anti-vaping bill in April

Most Read