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65 Comments

  1. 1

    Sally Forth

    I am a senior with two mid size dogs. I have an impossible time trying to take them out on a leash because of pulling, squirrels, etc., and my feebleness, but would love to take them some place where they can walk and run offleash and I can also get a decent walk. Most dog parks are useless for human exercise and vice versa. We have numerous parks in Brookhaven, all for humans and leashed dogs. Would it be asking too much to dedicate two or three days a week to use of just one for dogs off leash, and the rest of the time for humans and leashed dogs only?

  2. 2

    Tom

    Yes, it is AGAINST THE LAW!

  3. 3

    GK

    I live within a 5-10 minute walk of 2 parks that dogs are not welcome off leash. I choose to drive to Brookhaven Park to get my dog some exercise (I get some too). The reality is there are 12 other parks to enjoy in Brookhaven that are not dog parks. Yes, you’ll have to drive (as I do) to get what you want. But we can’t have everything exactly the way we want it. 12 choices for you, 1 for dogs.

    Sorry you ran into some rude people. Most owners (overwhelming percentage) are very respectful of everyone who comes to the park. But don’t make it look like every dog owner there is aggressive and combative, it is simply not true. Many non-dog people enjoy the park daily and we co-exist beautifully.

  4. 4

    Tom

    Good point GK. You say you drive to this park. Can you imagine what it will be like if offered as an off-leash park? We already have people driving to it from Buckhead and Chamblee. Did you advocate for one of the 2 parks by your residence to be off leash? Brookhaven Park is not an off-lease park.

  5. 5

    Gloria

    You won’t find me and my children in a park where there are dogs leashed or not. Dogs poop. Just because you pick it up doesn’t mean you got it all. It’s disgusting. I don’t want any chance of contaminating my children rolling in the grass or their shoes with dog poop.

    By the way dog owners, when you walk your dog and it poops in my yard, once you bag it, take the bag with you. I am tired of the sanitation department taking your dog poop bags out of my yard trimmings and trash and throwing them back on my yard. We need to train some dog owners responsible dog ownership.

  6. 6

    Jeremy

    I’m glad BPD is going to enforce the law. If one wants a park for dogs to practice their social skills, lobby their city councilman or councilwoman for a dog park or section of a park to be a dog run. Respect the law and the process and go through the proper channels to get tax payer dollars to fund a park for this type of use. If you don’t like that idea, buy land in Brookhaven and gift it to the city specifically for a dog park.

  7. 7

    TC

    I have been going to Brookhaven Park since 1988 and live in Brookhaven Fields. During this time I have been bitten by a dog and have the scars to prove it, chased and cornered several times, jumped on by wet smelly dogs many times, and had my picnic trampled and consumed by a very aggressive dog. All while the owners had a leash in their hand. “Sometimes”
    Am I a glutton for punishment? Maybe. Am I going to let a dog or it’s owner run me out of a park that I pay for? Never.
    Some dog owners have been rude, obnoxious, and show up with an air of entitlement. Now they want our sworn police officers to “officially” break the law and expect citizens to participate and be accepting of this request.

    The city and citizens have offered a solution with the 2 fenced in areas and continued on-leash use of the entire park. Skyland Park and the future Osborne Park will have the same. The proposal doesn’t reduce the available area by 80%, as has been rumored. The front 10 acres are and “may” remain under the ownership of DeKalb County so the plan was drawn accordingly. The two fenced areas will be an est. 1/3 of the total park area.

    I do have to ask though, where have you all been for the past several years as many of us have fought to protect and push for the transfer of ownership of this park to the city of Brookhaven, held and participated in clean up days, performed general maintenance, called for the grass to be cut, picked up trash, etc. etc.? A few I did recognize at the meetings and truly appreciate your help, but many I have never seen with a sweaty brow or at any of the many other meetings that have been held.

    Piedmont Park and Brook Run have “legal” dog parks available to their citizens. Brookhaven needs the same.

  8. 8

    Brian Brown

    I have been going to Brookhaven Park with my dog for nearly two years. My dog and I are always respectful of “non-dog” activities – runners, ultimate frisbee, kickballers or picnicers . This also goes for the other dogs and their owners as well. All go out of our way to not bother and welcome other activities because we are nice people first and second we know this is a special and unique place and do not want it compromised. The dogs and the owners treasure this park. As a citizen of Brookhaven I would expect the City Council and their advisors to take the needs of the large population of Brookhaven dog owners citizenery that use the park into account in their decisions.

  9. 9

    Lemmy

    what’s an off-lease park?

  10. 10

    GK

    Maybe we should ban driving to parks then because Tom thinks that’s a problem too. I know folks who drive in from out of state for tennis tournaments at Blackburn. Ban them. And no, haven’t asked for 2 parks close to me to be off leash parks, no need to be selfish. 1/13 parks is good enough for me.

  11. 11

    Tom

    GK – Do you often compare apples to oranges? And, it is 1/3 not 1/13.

  12. 12

    Jennifer

    okay,,, but you don’t have an issue with Bird, Racoon, Squirel poop? just sayin

  13. 13

    Eddie E.

    The dogs just need some batting cages, goalposts and special days where other citizens are forbidden, just like MC Park.

  14. 14

    GK

    Tom, good sir – I was referring to 13 parks in Brookhaven. Apples to apples.

  15. 15

    Saul

    An off lease park is one that will not be leased out to Google. Hope this helps.

  16. 16

    TC

    Brook Run is 2 acres.
    Piedmont Dog Park is almost 3 acres.
    The back park area of Brookhaven Park is 11.15 acres+-. (Total including service center is 21.15 acres +-.) If I/3 of the back 11.15 acres is dedicated to the dog parks that would give them approx. 3.72 acres to run and play in.

    As a matter of information, right now Dist.3 only has a residential lot as park space owned by the city and known as Clack’s Corner. That is it! Fernwood has been declared a watershed area, not a park and is not owned by the city. Hopefully, Brookhaven Park will be a city park in the near future.

  17. 17

    Gloria

    Jen dear, far less of them in a dog park senario. Duh! Plus, their poop is not of the same compodition.

  18. 18

    Jennifer

    Don’t forget Briarwood. Fernwood was never a park, greenspace maybe but park… nah.

  19. 19

    Jennifer

    Wow, I didn’t realize that you were a poop expert. My bad.

  20. 20

    Tom

    Brookhaven only has 10 parks at this time. Ashford, Blackburn, Blackburn II, Lynwood, Briarwood, Clack’s Corner, Georgian Hills, Murphey Candler, Parkside, and Skyland.
    Brookhaven we don’t own yet, Fernwood we don’t own and is not parkland, Osborne we don’t own yet and is undeveloped, and Perimeter Trail is not accessible to us yet.

    My point about driving to the park was to emphasis the number of how many more folks will come from the surrounding area if declared a 100% off-leash park. It has nothing to do with whether you drive or not. Kind of like, once the word is out situation. A comparison of a tennis match to a dog park I’m still confused about.

  21. 21

    Jennifer

    I have an idea. Let’s tell MARTA to included a large dog park in their development and put the google hut there. Seems fair since they have enough room for almost 800 apartments, a hotel, a civic space, 125K ft of office space, 40K ft of retail a parkinglot for almost 600 and a “large public green space” all on 10 acres it is crazy to think that there is enough room for a dog park, a playground. parking lot and some green space in the 13 acres at Brookhaven park. For a topic that the not dog people say is for just a few and the dog people feel they are being shafted it sure is getting a lot of attention.

  22. 22

    TC

    Briarwood is in Dist. 2

  23. 23

    City-Weary

    Or, instead of feeling shafted, the pro-100% off leash people could view it as they’ve been given a lucky break all this time as the city has looked the other way instead of enforcing an ordinance.

  24. 24

    Lemmy

    T – whatever the count is he or she has a point. if there are 10 parks or the other 3 making it 13 the dog people have 1 park. everyone else has at least 9. they pay taxes too so I don’t want to hear that stuff. and the city calls it the dog park already, doubt theres going to be triple the dogs coming in. share the wealth T. that or you hate dogs, kinda concerning.

  25. 25

    Ben

    Dogs are much better than people are by far. Let’s put leashes on the people. Brookhaven is such a downer man. Idiots.

  26. 26

    Tom

    Why does it have to be all or nothing with this park? I don’t hate dogs and would love to have several parks with a dog area to take mine to. Can’t wait for Skyland and Osborne Park to complete their dog portion areas also.

  27. 27

    Ant

    Cool dude! What have you been smoking?

  28. 28

    Gloria

    Sorry Jen, I thought this was common knowledge among learned animal owners and lovers.

  29. 29

    James

    I support a fenced in legal off leash park. However as it stands now the park is a danger zone. My boys have been jumped on and scratched on various occasions to the point where they are nervous to play in the park. Roughly half of the owners are apologetic while others make you believe you are playing in a dog park so the risk is on you. Regardless of your feeling towards dogs, that is not acceptable behavior. I for one am glad the police will be cracking down on the leash law.

  30. 30

    FM

    No pun intended, but for some the tail is wagging the dog. The parks are for people. Yes, allow the dogs to enjoy the space but on a lease…as is the case in any public space.

  31. 31

    Sally Forth

    You are saying if it becomes known that it is an off leash park there would be tremendous usage of it, even to the extent that people would drive to it. Aren’t you then conceding that there is a remendous need for such a park? The point was made earlier that there are numerous other parks in Brookhaven, and most are very underused. It is a shame not to maximize usage in the one place dog owners have found a haven.

  32. 32

    Sally Forth

    I believe the point has been made that dog owners are taxpayers too. A dog run is not the kind of environment where dog owners can walk with their dogs and interact socially with other dog owners.

  33. 33

    Sally Forth

    Leash, not lease

  34. 34

    Linda

    Good info, Thanks, TC.

  35. 35

    Justin

    Dogowner entitlement in these discussions is a little over the top.

    I love dogs but that doesn’t mean I think they are entitled (or their owners) to public common spaces — particularly in an off-leash scenario. This limits the use of said spaces by people.

    We live in a city — fortunately one where you can buy a house with a yard. If you want your dog off leash to run and play, get a house with a yard, a fence, and let Bailey, Cooper, Duke, and friends have at it.

    People > dogs, full stop. And dogs are the responsibility of owners to take care of and provide for. Not the general public. There’s really nothing else to say here. Let’s move on.

  36. 36

    Ridiculous rebuttle

    Cheryl,

    I’ve gone to this park 4-5 times a week for the past 3 years. The picture you paint of the park is ridiculous. The park become and unofficial dog park when locals such as your self never use the park. Your once a year scenario with your granddaughter shouldn’t qualify you to have an opinion.

  37. 37

    When you rebuttle

    Cheryl take note and never question lae breakers. Just because law is ignored doesn’t mean you can have an opinion. At least not for n Brookhaven.

  38. 38

    Ryan Cranford

    Well I’m here. As I stated in my article I am more than happy to take consideration of all parties into account. I think that’s the goal. Welcomed discussion regarding the park is now taking place. That was certainly a goal before blindly moving forward with a plan that no one had input into.

    What now is strange is the knee-jerk reaction of enforcing the leash law after 3+ years of turning an eye. Park plans are moved forward, Fox 5 runs a news story, the city gets wind of it and becomes public debate, now they decide they should probably enforce it.

    Everyone is obviously entitled to whatever thoughts they have on the park, and in my mind you aren’t wrong at all for having them. My hope through all of this is that a healthy discussion takes place that works towards a mutual resolution.

  39. 39

    Tommy

    So is illegal immigration and we all Brookhaven is a hot bed for this. If you’re going to drop what is and what isn’t against the law try not to cherry pick. All you anti “city” folks need a hobby or a job. Move on.

  40. 40

    Ryan Cranford

    And Cheryl I certainly understand your concerns, thank you for voicing them. Hopefully the process moves quickly to find common ground that makes all sides happy.

  41. 41

    Tom

    What on earth makes you imply that I am anti-city or that I don’t have a job? Stupid comment!

  42. 42

    Enough

    Ryan,
    There was ample opportunity for discussion and community input. There is also nothing blindly moving forward or any knee-jerk reaction. This has been an issue and a topic of conversation since before Cityhood. We started this dialog as early as the Governors Commission. I don’t own a dog and have been advocating for dog parks throughout the city. I have attended city meetings, PARC meetings, conservancy meetings, and most recently the park master plan meetings asking for dog parks in 4 of the parks.
    Unfortunately, this last minute outrage, assumptions, and attitude of some of the citizens has caused this to all go sour.
    To be a community we need to respond as a community and have knowledge of what has come to pass, is currently under consideration, and to help form what the future may bring.

  43. 43

    Tom

    I concede to nothing Sally. The reality is that if Brookhaven Park was declared a 100% off-leash dog park people from all over the metro area will come to utilize this park. It will no longer be predominately Brookhaven citizens enjoying it. It would create another problem and issue for you to be outraged about. Only difference would be that you created it yourselves. Stop being so nimby and try to look at the big picture. Google Brookhaven Park and read some of the comments. There are already people traveling from outside the city with their dogs to use this park and they are certainly welcome. Open it as the only off-leash dog park in the area, that I am aware of, and see how much enjoyment you get from it then. Not to mention the enormous liability that would be incurred.

  44. 44

    Pretzels

    I’d use the park if it wasn’t full of off leash dogs.

  45. 45

    Chad

    When is the next city council meeting?

  46. 46

    Alan

    It’s interesting to me that no one remembers, not too long ago, when no one used the park because of the large number of homeless people that took up occupancy there. In fact, it was only owners with dogs that were willing to venture to the park, which is around the time it developed it’s “unofficial dog park” reputation. Many of those same dog owners were involved in cleaning up the park, clearing our underbrush and picking up trash on weekends.

  47. 47

    Curious

    Check the city’s website, it’s listed there.

  48. 48

    Jennifer

    It’s not about the City taking care of dogs. It is about the City providing parks that all of the residents can enjoy. Not just the ones with kids or the ones that like to jog or walk or garden. There are many residents of this city that enjoy spending time in the park that they pay for too with their pets. No park should be exclusive to a specific group as we all pay taxes and should be about to enjoy it. There is room for a dog park, playground, community garden, walking/jogging trail. The issue for most of the dog owners is that they are frustrated that all of a sudden something that has been accepted for 15+ years is not and it seems a little hostile in the way that it has taken place. If all of a sudden open fields are only available a few hours because they have been leased to a youth group and there is all kind of complaints too. It would be nice if the city would run a temporary fench or allow someone to donate a temporary fence while everything is finalized for the new park layout to make everyone happy.

  49. 49

    Georgia Mom

    Gloria – since this topic is about dog parks and leash laws, and you state you won’t be found anywhere dogs are allowed – leash or not, I wonder why you even took time to comment, I doubt you will ever be able to find a place where your children can “roll in the grass” and not be exposed to ANYTHING unless you sterilize your back yard. Poor kids.

  50. 50

    Gloria

    Silly Georgia Mom I am talking about dog feces. I take it you have no problem mixing dog feces and children. To each his own.

  51. 51

    Chad

    Brookhaven does need an official off leash area. Unfortunately, the current plans are not 1/3 of the total park area of Brookhaven Park. Much less. Developing an inadequate official dog park is really bad for everyone involved. Unfortunately, we seem to be developing a dog park that is too small with too much parking.

  52. 52

    Chad

    If I understand peoples concerns, they are as follows:
    1) Kids shouldn’t mix with the dogs
    2) Sports fields shouldn’t mix with the dogs
    3) Picnic areas shouldn’t mix with the dogs
    All of those activities will be done on the front half of the property. If you fence off the back half, then the only thing that is included in the off leash area not already contemplated are the walking trails. But it improves the off leash area immensely as it makes it feel like a park with dogs, not a Piedmont Dog Park like area. With that big a space, there wouldn’t be overcrowding of dogs and dog lovers and non-dog lovers can still utilize the trails.

    I’m really confused why that’s not the compromise. No need for double gates with a big off leash area. You don’t even have to dedicate it full time. Temporary fencing and utilize the whole park when you have big events. With a dog park as envisioned, that option is eliminated. The families within walking distance don’t need 20 acres of playground.

    Let’s improve the situation, not make it worse!

  53. 53

    Chad

    This is reasonable position. Let’s improve the situation by making it a great off leash area of the appropriate size.

  54. 54

    City-Weary

    If you’re talking about walking trails ONLY within the dog off leash area, with no option of walking trails OUTSIDE of the off leash area, it would discourage use by those who want to walk their dogs on leash. It’s common practice to not have leashed dogs mix in with an off leash area because the leashed dog feels vulnerable being attached to a leash and more likely to instigate aggressive behavior or a fight. This is the reason for the double gates at dog parks. It is a mechanism to not only prevent dogs from running away when the owner is trying to leash/unleash them but it also lessens the stress to a dog that’s being unleashed and preparing to go into the dog park.

  55. 55

    CSB

    Today (Wednesday, Dec. 23rd) at 10am at City Hall.

  56. 56

    Chad

    That’s a valid concern at dog parks that have more dogs than area. People should obey the law, but the things you are talking don’t occur at Brookhaven Park currently.

  57. 57

    Chad

    I found the website and today’s meeting is not about dog parks but the BIA.

  58. 58

    City-Weary

    You should hope it won’t. You see, I completely understand the “community” situation going on there because that was me at Brook Run around 2003-ish. There was a group of us that regularly went there (it was a fenced in area but smaller than today). The owners and dogs had familiarity with each other and so the dogs were comfortable. Everyone respected the rules and kept their dogs under control. Then the park became more well known and attracted people from a wider area. The mix of people and dogs was constantly changing and it became problematic. I and many others stopped going. I have since learned at lot more about dog parks and socialization. Once this place is on the map it won’t be the same.

  59. 59

    Biggest dog Park in Georgia (Please)

    I do not think most people would be sour if this just became a dog park. If it was made official that the majority of the park was fenced off and a small part of the open field was left for the folks who want to throw the frisbee then it would not be a big deal. People are upset because they have had a daily routine that is about to be interrupted because of someone like you wants to go forward to your personal agenda. Maybe if you did have a dog you would understand better. Please try to understand. Please….

  60. 60

    Please share

    District one has a bunch of parks, two and three have a fair about. District four has zero….
    Brookhaven park is the only green space and the closest green space for district four. That being said, Brookhaven is being developed with the majority of people will not have yards with all the condos, apartments, and postage size yards so having a place for people to run their dogs is very important.
    If the majority of Brookhaven Park was fenced off as the only dog park in Brookhaven then this could be a win – win.
    Brookhaven Park is centered by a lot of current high density and future high density and it would be great if it could stay the same except for a large fence to block off the majority of the park.
    It is not like the “dog” people are asking for a takeover of Ashford Park, Blackburn, or any other Brookhaven Park. They are only asking for a grandfather clause and to please make it legal. That is all they are asking.

  61. 61

    Curious

    Keep your eye on the website… Perhaps the next meeting will cover the dog park topic.

  62. 62

    Justin

    An entire, enormous park in the heart of what people consider Brookhaven …. Just for dogs. That seems a little aggressive to me. I get the desire and whose doesn’t love dogs?

    But pets are a luxury and if you get one but don’t have space for it, that isn’t something you can pass on to the community — at least not by way of off leash dogs over acres of prime real estate that is to be used by the general population. Dog owners are a minority of the community. Dog owners who take their dogs to dog parks make for an even smaller percentage.

    So doing the math, reasonable sharing is allocating a space for dog owners go have dogs off leash. And the status quo and lack of oversight on Brookhaven Park was going to end at some point.

  63. 63

    Eric Robert

    Use a small part for a dog part but don’t make most of it a Dog Park Its the only sizeable park within walking distance of MARTA and on a major street (Peachtree). This park should be used for all of the large events the City wants to hold like the Cherry Blossom Festival, Soccerfest or other events attracting large crowds.

  64. 64

    Jennifer

    there is not much parking and when MARTA is developed next year the parking log will not be accessable. Blackburn is better situated for large events.

  65. 65

    Dean

    There is plenty of free parking now at the MARTA Station. You just may have to walk a bit. Once that area is developed much less and probably expensive.

    Blackburn has parking, but a large event will quickly fill up. I know, cut down some Cherry trees, pave, and Blackburn will have enough parking. The city will figure it out soon.

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