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Eugene Parks considers banning large dogs from "small dog" park, and other new rules

The City of Eugene Parks and Open Space division is considering banning large dogs from a "small dog" park and banning alcohol from parks, among other rules. (SBG photo)

EUGENE, Ore. - When the sun comes out, so do people and their pets. Before the summer season begins, officials with the City of Eugene Parks and Open Space division are proposing a few new rules for park-goers.

One of those proposed rules would ban dogs that weigh more than 25 pounds from entering the "small dog" park at the Amazon Dog Park.

Small dog owner Emily Carpenter-Monroe said she comes to this "small dog" park to keep her miniature pincher, Nova, safe.

"I think it's a good idea because some little dogs don't like big dogs," Carpenter-Monroe said. "And the big dogs have a really big area to run around in."

Other dog owners, disagree.

"I think it's a silly rule," said dog owner Ona Chambers. "I think we enforce our own rules out here."

Chambers said that timid, friendly dogs should be allowed in the small dog section, no matter their size.

"Especially when they first come here," Chambers said. "They're a little skittish and scared. It would be better for them to be over there and feel like a big fish in a little pond."

Currently, the 25-pound weight limit is just a recommendation and not a rule. That would change with the park's new proposal.

"By having this rule it allows other people in the park to say, ‘You know, there is a weight limit in this park,’" said Kelly Darnell with the City of Eugene Parks and Open spaces. "It also allows us to put up some signs."

Another proposed rule deals with alcohol. Darnell said alcohol is currently prohibited near playgrounds, parking lots and other areas. But the new proposal would make all Eugene parks entirely alcohol-free, except for city-approved celebrations, like weddings.

That is a welcomed change for some park-goers.

"I recommend it," said park-goer Wade Houston. "Why would you want to have alcohol out here? What good would it do? Alcohol is for bars and casinos."

RELATED | Tobacco use restricted in Lane County parks, campgrounds

Other rules prohibit park-goers from dismantling and distributing bicycle parts, parking overnight without permission, and playing music without a permit.

Darnell says park ambassadors will be out in the parks from now through October, reminding people about park rules. Citizens are encouraged to report anyone they see violating the rules.

There is currently a public comment period open until Friday, May 19. Comments or suggestions can be submitted by email to POS@ci.eugene.or.us or sent by mail to City of Eugene Public Works Department, Administration Division, 101 East Broadway, Suite 400, Eugene, Oregon 97401 or City of Eugene Public Works Department, Parks and Open Space Division, 1820 Roosevelt Blvd., Eugene, Oregon 97402. After expiration of the comment period, the Executive Director will adopt the amendments as proposed, or as modified in response to comments received.

RELATED | Eugene City Council passes dog ban for downtown core

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