Dog park

Youngtown Councilwoman Margaret Chittenden discusses the options for a dog park in Youngtown during a community meeting Saturday.

Nick Cote/Daily News-Sun

Councilwoman Margaret Chittenden wants Youngtown to create a dog park, and she’s checking out facilities throughout the Valley to get some ideas.

Sun Citian Joyce Lyon said Chittenden shouldn’t have to look any further than the dog park near the La Ronde Shopping Center at Del Webb Boulevard and Talisman.

“I find it to be a wonderful place to just socialize and sit and relax with a few folks and their dogs,” Lyon said.

Lyon attended a meeting Saturday at Youngtown United Methodist Church where Chittenden met with residents to get more information about a dog park before she presents the idea to the Youngtown Town Council. “We’re pursuing a dog park for our dog lovers in this town and for the safety of our citizens who walk their dogs,” she said.

A location has not been selected, Chittenden said, but the gathering of more than a dozen people discussed a site near the park across from Maricopa Lake.

Chittenden said the dog park wouldn’t be just for Youngtown residents but for others in neighboring communities who want to use it. The councilwoman also added the park should be near seniors with dogs who live in retirement centers nearby so they’ll have easy access and be able to walk.

In the last month, Chittenden has been to dog parks in El Mirage, Surprise and plans to visit another in Gilbert.

Florence Brown, who owns a Rottweiler, said she would love to have a dog park in Youngtown but hopes there would be separate areas for big and small dogs.

If the council approved a dog park, Chittenden said a committee of residents would raise money to build one.

“We’re still far away from this happening that we’ll discuss it more and look into things and talk with the council about it in a workshop,” she said.

Mayor Michael LeVault said he supports creation of a dog park and believes Chittenden and other residents are taking the right steps to make it a reality.

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