Local pet supply company plans dog park in city

A local pet supply business is stepping up with plans to create Seymour’s first dog park.

Pet Supplies Plus, a warehouse and distribution facility for pet stores, located in the Eastside Industrial Park, began discussing the project internally about a year ago, said Tammy Barker, the company’s new human resources manager.

The dog park would be located in a grassy area to the north of Pet Supplies Plus’ parking lot. The park would be fenced in, and there would be areas to keep large dogs separate from small dogs, Barker said.

She said the company would like to be able to host community pet adoption events at the park and plans to provide a walking trail within the fenced-in area for people, too.

Barker attended last week’s city council meeting to seek guidance and support for the project from city officials.

She is looking for ideas for signage to help let people know what will be in that area.

“We’re very excited about it,” she said.

Building commissioner Jeremy Gray said Tuesday the company will have to apply for a land-use variance from the Seymour Board of Zoning Appeals first to use the property for a dog park since it is currently zoned industrial.

But he didn’t think that would be a problem.

“I think this is something our residents want, so the city is going to do anything they can to help them move forward,” he said.

Mayor Craig Luedeman said he fully supports the idea and would love to see the dog park happen.

In the past, he has suggested a similar idea for a dog park to be established near Freeman Field Park on the city’s southwest side. The idea was included in plans for upgrades to that park but have been put on hold for financial reasons, Luedeman said.

He also said that the area has been targeted by the city’s parks department for walking trails, which makes it an even better location for a dog park, he said.

Alesia Richards of Seymour said she thinks the dog park will be a good way to keep dogs from defecating in public areas, including other parks and Riverview Cemetery, which are popular places for people to walk their dogs.

The park would have pet waste stations set up for dog owners to pick up and dispose of their pet’s waste to keep the park clean for everyone to enjoy, Barker said.

Shawna Boas of Seymour also thinks it’s a great idea.

“It would be fenced, people would have to supervise their pets and clean up after them, and for those that live in apartments, they can take their dogs there to run,” she said.

Charlie Fettig of Seymour applauds Pet Supplies Plus’ willingness to get involved in the community by providing residents with a public dog park.

“This addition would align us better in showing our community is caring for animals and owners alike putting us above other towns who don’t and alongside of those who do,” he said. “We are very fortunate to have this type of company in our city.”

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January Rutherford is a reporter for The (Seymour) Tribune. She can be reached at jrutherford@tribtown.com or 812-523-7069.