Dog park-goers receive warnings for improper registration - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Dog park-goers receive warnings for improper registration

IOWA CITY (KWWL) - Iowa City Animal Services recently issued 35 notices to dog owners in a single day, because they didn't have the proper tags for their pets at the Thornberry off-leash park.

Dustin Elin of North Liberty was there with his dogs, when animal services officials showed up.

"When people saw them out here, they darted for their cars pretty quickly," he told us.

That might be understandable, as the fine for not having the proper registration or park pass can range between $60 and $100. But with those rules posted at the entrance, he couldn't understand why so many dog owners were unprepared.

"I imagine a lot of people don't have this much room in their backyards, so I'm glad to pay the fee."

Diana Harris learned shortly after the park opened in 2006, that many people simply don't stop to read those rules. She is President of the Board, for Johnson County's Dog Park Action Committee.

"Probably a third of the people I spoke with who didn't have tags didn't realize they needed to have tags," she said. "They get to the park, their dog is excited, they're not reading the posted rules."

Misha Goodman is Iowa City's Director of Animal Services. She says their first yearly visit usually results in some warnings.

"We knew it was the first warm day, and wanted to get in touch with [dog owners] early."

To go to the park, your dog must be at least four months old and be vaccinated for rabies. They also need to be registered to the city they live in. After that, a park pass for visits between January and December is $25, with $5 discounts for animals that have been microchipped, and spayed or neutered.

The Midwest One Bank in Iowa City is hosting a microchip clinic on Saturday, May 2 from 10 AM to 1 PM. It costs $5, but then you'll get a $5 discount for a park pass.

Online Reporter - Brady Smith

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