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FINISHING TOUCHES PUT ON PAW-SOME DOG PARK

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Dogs and their owners can make the most of a newly opened dog park at Hovells Creek Reserve on Rennie Street in Lara.

The new park includes a dog training area as well as seating, parking and new trees.

The Lara facility is the third fenced dog park for Greater Geelong, joining existing popular facilities in Corio and Belmont. Additional dog parks in the region are proposed for Aldershot Reserve in St Albans Park and on the Bellarine.

The Greater Geelong region has one of the largest animal populations of any Victorian municipality, with almost 38,000 dogs and cats registered in 2021.

A drinking fountain featuring original artwork by Wadawurrung Traditional Owner and artist Billy-Jay O’Toole has been installed at the site in partnership with Wadawurrung Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation, and Barwon Water.

The fountain design recognises the Wadawurrung People as the Traditional Owners of the Land, Waterways and Skies, and includes educational inscriptions that aim to teach, inspire and raise awareness of Wadawurrung values.

The new facilities are part of Council’s ongoing commitment to providing fenced dog parks throughout the region, following the adoption of the Fenced Dog Parks Siting, Design andManagement Guidelines and the Domestic Animal Management Plan.

Councillor Kylie Grzybek – Windermere Ward

Dog ownership has boomed across Greater Geelong as the isolation of lockdowns prompted residents to seek canine companionship and welcomed furry friends into their homes as life-long family members.

There are nearly 3000 registered dogs and their owners in Lara alone so we expect the park will be very popular.

I’m proud our new park provides a safe and secure space for our furry friends to run around and play with other pets.

Councillor Anthony Aitken – Windemere Ward

Lara residents told us they wanted to see more pet-friendly spots around the neighbourhood so we’ve responded with a fantastic new park where dogs can run around and play in a safe environment.

Pet ownership is so good for our physical and mental health and I look forward to seeing local dogs and their owners enjoying the facilities and making new friends.

Billy-Jay O’Toole – Wadawurrung Traditional Owner and artist

My artwork depicts the importance of caring for country to encourage all to look and deeply listen to country to respect, appreciate and take care of Wadawurrung Country.

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