Who let the dogs out?


Complaints about dogs running free on Tamahere Park have arisen just as the policy on dog control district-wide comes up for review.

At the same time, the only dog exercise area in Tamahere – a strip of river bank off Te Awa Rd – may have fallen – literally – out of use.

Designated dog exercise areas are the only public places that dogs can exercise off the leash. Dogs are prohibited entirely from council playgrounds, such as those at Tamahere Park, and should be on the leash near them.

But after concerns were raised with the Tamahere Community Committee (TCC) about dogs off the leash at Tamahere Park, with its sports fields and playgrounds, the committee decided it was time to seek the views of locals – dog owners and non-dog owners alike – about the rules and provisions for dogs in the area.

Part of the Te Awa Reserve was designated a dog exercise area in 2016

The discussion comes as the Waikato District Council prepares to review its Dog Control Policy and early drafts show that the dog exercise area at Te Awa Park, only designated in 2016, has gone from the proposed, district-wide list of exercises areas.

The upcoming review meant the committee was “in a great place to lobby for some dog exercise area for Tamahere if we can get feedback on what people would like,” said TCC chair Sue Robertson. 

Around 800 dogs call Tamahere’s large blocks home – the big section size raising its own question.

“Given properties in our Tamahere area are mostly large – 5000 sq m or more – the question does get raised ‘Do we need any special off-leash exercise areas designated?’,” Robertson said.

Whether dog owners are aware of the Te Awa Park dog exercise area or riverbank erosion has made it unusable, are other issues the committee would like to get feedback on.

To give your views on dog issues in Tamahere comment below or email the committee at tamaherecommunitycommittee16@gmail.com

Feedback could include to the following questions:

·    Are people aware of the off-leash dog exercise area on Te Awa Rd?

·   Who uses it?

·   How frequently?

·   Are people aware of the ‘on leash’ only rules for dogs on Tamahere Park?

·   Are people aware that dogs are not to be on/in the Playground or Skate Park areas?

·   Is new signage necessary to clearly state the dog rules in relation to the Tamahere Park environs?

·   Would dog walkers welcome more off-leash dog exercise areas in the district?

·   Where?

·   Why?

·   What particular times of the day as it’s likely these would be restricted?

2 thoughts on “Who let the dogs out?

  • August 3, 2021 at 12:53 pm

    I am a dog owner living close to the Tamahere sports grounds, I use the grounds Monday – Friday in the early mornings. I arrive before 0800 and am gone before 0930. I exercise my dog, work on her obedience training and work on her social skills with other dogs. During these mornings I haven’t seen anyone else using the fields. I keep my dog well away from the school grounds and she is never off lead around the courtyard and shops/cafe. I and the other dog owners pick up our dogs waste and also any other dog waste we find, we also daily clean up the rubbish that humans have left behind, cans, bottles, food wrappers and even human faeces on one occasion! We notify the council when the water faucets are leaking, when the turf is vandalised by cars doing donuts. We and our dogs are being good citizens of Tamahere. For those of us dog owners that utilise the grounds on a daily basis, we have no alternative venues. TeAwa and Acacia reserves are small and dangerous sites for dogs and humans. There needs to be safe areas for dogs to socialise in Tamahere. Please open this topic for discussion and consideration. Supporting well trained dogs that are good citizens helps keep our community safer.
    Thank you,
    Janet and Peter Bardsley
    5 Riverglade Dr

  • July 29, 2021 at 10:25 pm

    I feel that Tamahere skate park should allow dogs on a leash only. I have taken my little dog down there before the park was even built walking around the diameter on the grass. A few weekends ago I was shocked to see so many dogs off leash. Dogs should be allowed surely you cannot ban any dog owner for walking around the park keeping to the footpath and the nice new concrete paths. I feel that dogs should only be on the perimeter. Lovely area fo all to enjoy.


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