Tales and tails will be wagging across Goondiwindi today as local law changes will allow dogs to be walked off-leash at the Botanic Gardens.
The Botanic Gardens committee hope that the new off-leash area will help visitors to get the most out of their experience of the Gardens.
The off-leash area will begin at the boat ramp and follow the walking track around the lake back to the lawn. The lawn area near the playground will continue to be a leash-only area as it is a popular spot for barbeques and picnics.
New signs will be installed soon to make it clear which areas are off-leash and leash-only. A new dispenser and bin for dog waste bags will also be installed to help users keep the Gardens clean as they enjoy their visit.
The committee surveyed the public last year as part of their strategic planning process and found a considerable majority to be in favour of a secure off-leash area.
An amendment to local law was required and the committee made a formal request to the Goondiwindi Regional Council to achieve this. The Council approved the request on 28th March and dogs will be able to enjoy the designated off-leash area from today.
Botanic Gardens committee president Bruce McCollum says he’s happy about what the law change would mean for users of the Gardens.
“Our members have often commented on how good it is to be able to take their dogs around the walking tracks and that it would be even better if they didn’t have to be on leashes.”
He also wanted to remind dog walkers to ensure their dogs behave whether on- or off-leash and that control of the dog was the sole responsibility of the person walking it.
“It doesn’t matter what size or shape the dog is, as long as it behaves – and we are confident that owners will see to this.”.
Mayor Graeme Scheu is also pleased to see the change.
“We’re so lucky to have the Botanic Gardens here in Goondiwindi as it’s a beautiful space to relax in and enjoy nature. This new feature of the Gardens will hopefully mean more of that enjoyment for our four-legged-friends – and their owners.”
Caption: Botanic Gardens committee president Bruce McCollum and wife Sue McCollum enjoying the off-leash walking track at Gardens with their dog, Sheb.