What the Community is Saying About a Dog Park

More than 200 Ward 8 residents have signed our petition for a dog park in Oxon Run Park! Take a look at what some of them have to say below (or jump to the bottom for a quick summary). You can sign the petition to share your own feedback here.

If you represent a local business or community organization, take a look at what other local leaders are saying and contact us to submit a letter of support!

If you'd like to join the Friends of Oxon Run Dog Park Groupthe group of volunteers who will eventually be responsible for cleaning and organizing events in the dog park—please contact us here.

Petition Responses: Why Do You Want a Dog Park in Ward 8?

"Why can't Black people have a dog park? We deserve good things too." Demelza

"Ward 8 dogs are important just like other dogs in other areas. It’s also a great place to meet and connect with your neighbors. ...I am so excited about this!! " — Joy

"This community is filled with dogs and pet lovers, so it’s disappointing that a dog park isn’t available to us. A dog park in Oxon Run Park will further build and help sustain a sense of community and 'togetherness' in this part of Ward 8." Rochelle

"We deserve the same amenities as other wards." — Stephen

"We should not have to drive to Navy Yard and Virginia to take our dogs to the dog park. We deserve a dog park in our neighborhood." — Shaukeria

"To bring the community together and to give dogs a safe place to play and meet other dogs in the community" — Daneal

"There are a lot of dogs in the area and a place for them to play would be great!" — Mike

"Oxon Run Park is huge and has room for multiple uses. Dogs provide many physical and mental health benefits for their owners. Ward 8 residents should not have to go to other parts of the city for this amenity." — Aisha

"There isn't a safe place to let my dog play outside safely off-leash. This would be perfect! It's a good location and I think the neighborhood dogs would love it." — Raigon

"I have two dogs and we have to go across the river to find a decent park. There should be one in our neighborhood."Jasmine

"I'm tired of driving to another ward or outside the city to get my fur baby a safe place to run and play with other socialized dogs." — Vené

"I have a dog and I would feel safer going to a dog park rather than walking the neighborhood at this point." — Joy

"Oxon Run Park needs more infrastructure. The space is large enough for dogs of all sizes to exercise while maintaining adequate space for use for all residents to continue using the park." — Carlene

"We need one in the area. For years I've had to drive my dog to other parts of the city to enjoy a dog park. I walk my dogs to this park all the time and it is overdue to have a place that is dog-friendly in walking distance." — Dinahsta

"We need more communal areas for resident and their pets." Alyse

"We need a place for the community to socialize their dogs." Ana

"I have a dog and I have to go over the bridge to VA to go to a dog park or sit in traffic and go downtown or uptown to just let my dog go to the park. Ward 8 deserves a park as well just as the other wards do." — Dawne

"It gives the dogs a place of their own to interact with other dogs!" — Laneice

"I have two dogs who are very dog-friendly and love going to dog parks. I take them for long walks in Oxon Run Park and having a protected area where they could run off leash would be amazing." Jennifer

"As a dog owner and an animal control officer in Washington DC, this gives dog owners a reason to properly interact with their animals." — Michael

"I have a friendly dog who would enjoy other playful/friendly dogs to play and burn energy." — Shelena

"My dog rarely has the opportunity to play with other dogs in a safe and enclosed space, and I have to travel all the way to NW to go to a nice one." — Peyton

"My dog will be able to play with friends and get energy out." — Allan

"Safe place to walk our dogs" — Richard

"To have a safe and clean designated space for all dogs to play" — Tanya

"It would provide a safe environment for dogs to play off-leash, and would create a gathering space for dog owners." — Susan

"There are pets around the area that need space out of kids' or humans' recreation areas." — Greece

"I would love to have a dog park that doesn't require crossing the river; if it can be a good size, even better." Jennifer

"It would be a great place to take our pets and meet more people in the community." — Krista

"I feel it would help bring unity within our changing community. A lot of new ideas are shared at dog parks." — Judith

"To have a safe place for dogs to play and socialize!"Chelsea

"There are many dogs owners in this area and the closest dog park is across the river in Navy Yard. Having a dog park will make it convenient for the dog owners and help build the community."Heather-Nicole

"As a dog owner, there are not any places nearby that I can take my dog to get his exercise and just play."Jena'i

"I already walk my dog there regularly, and it would be great to have a fenced-in area." — Liz

"It would be nice to have a designated area for dogs to run around and play. I used to have a dog, and it would have been nice to take her to a dog park. If I get another dog, I would love to have a dog park in the area." — William

"I feel as if we are slighted in major way! Our community lacks a lot of positive attributes that are around the Metropolitan Area. When you travel East of The River the scene is completely different. In today’s time our Fur Babies are our family and I’d like to be able to meet other like-minded individuals in my community. " — Antonika

"To have a designated place to exercise my dogs and a nice space to meet other dog owners in the community" — Adrienne

"Great community gathering spot with pets, and there is no where else to let our dogs off leash and stretch their legs. Please do this park for us." — Venus

"We don't have a sanctioned, safe place for dogs to build social skills and play off-leash in our immediate area. I think Oxon Run actually is a great place for a dog park." — Marico

"So that people here in Ward 8 can have a place to take their dogs as well as those in (as they would call it) the 'upper class' areas. We deserve the same in Ward 8. We are always left out over here and that is not right. We are working people as well." — Inez

"Ward 8 should have access to the same services as other wards." — Evan

"It will allow me to remain in my community and meet other neighbors with dogs, too." — Delancia

"Dogs need a safe place to run and play." — Vaughn

"It would be ideal to have a specified location for dog owners and residents to bring their pets. It's becoming challenging to walk my dog in the city, crossing streets, and on sidewalks. Car drivers seem hesitant to stop and my pet and me have nearly gotten hit twice despite a red light and a dedicated walkway." — Satova

"I think it will encourage more socializing. I hope it will stop people from using the kids' play areas as a dog potty. Also we need a way to enforce leash laws. I cycle through the park all the time and there are so many people walking dogs unleashed and not cleaning poop." — Jannah

"This community needs everything! Every amenity you can think of, we need it! Even though a dog park is a very low priority for our area, we need it!"Adrian

"I would love to have dog park in the area. There are enough dogs in Ward 8 and we deserve a park."Tennille

"My dog can benefit from something like this. All other wards have them. We should not be excluded." — Erica

"Our community is growing with dogs. I've seen a significant increase of dog owners. A dog park would bring so many benefits to our community such as a safe place for dogs and owners to get some exercise." — Yudi

"There should be more dog parks in our area. This is a start."Emily

"Dogs are humans as well; they play a major role within human lives. They also contribute to the therapeutic communication and support of a person who may battle with mental and/or emotional setbacks. The dog park in Ward 8 will solidify making dogs feel a part of the community in a significant way. It gives them things to look forward to, quality time out in nature, and a chance to make dog friends."Shaquan

"Currently there are no dog parks in the entire ward. It would be great if the residents had a safe and dedicated space to walk their dogs. There is enough room in the park to accommodate this."Salim

"I own a dog and would like a safe, clean, controlled place to take him. It's not safe or legal to take him to a park and let him run free, even though I've seen others do it. Having a park would give people and the community a safer option for the neighborhood dogs."Rachel

"Any opportunity to grow community and spend some time outdoors" — Chris

"Ward 8 deserves a dog park because many of its residents own dogs. This dog park will also allow for residents to become familiar with each other and forge a community. We also deserve a dog park because it will allow for us to not have to travel across town to other dog parks!" — Chelsea

"Because we need space dedicated for dogs in our ward, not for people to use green space and children's playgrounds as de facto facilities." — Ameen

"I have two dogs and it would be lovely to have a place where they can safely play."Joi

"There so many dog owners in the area it would be great to have a place for all of us to get together." — Eve

"Because residents in Ward 8 have dogs too. Dog parks are throughout the city and should be available in Ward 8. I have to go to Virginia when I want to take my dog off leash. Also there needs to be more dog poop trash cans throughout the ward. Black people have dogs too!"Alnisha

"To socialize my dog and meet neighbors" — Jaclyn

"It would be nice to see dogs of different breeds come together and have some play time. And I’m a seamstress, I make dog coats, and would love to host a Dog Fashion Show at the park. Thankful. Let’s make it happen." — Elvera

"Dogs need a place to exercise, socialize, and have fun in their short lives. We’ve made it an obligation to raise them, so let’s do right by them and give them the best life possible. Who would oppose to that?" — Isaiah

"It fits the environment, and it also became very populated with dogs and their guardians over the pandemic." — Del

"It may help limit the amount of potential dog-on-dog attacks from the people who refuse to leash their dogs. ...I have already spent months nursing my dog from such an attack." — Daniel

"Ward 8 is in need of more recreational facilities to help promote community and help provide safe locations to work and play. A dog park east of the river would be a great way to start providing that space that other wards have had for years."Cory

"To provide new life and excitement to Oxon Run Park" — Raymond

"I’ve been living here for 20 years and I’ve have a dog for 11 of those years. I’ve had to drive my dog to other various wards' dog parks as well as the Shirlington, Virginia, dog park for socializing. It’s high time for Ward 8 to have a dog park like the other wards.... #AllOneDC" — Michael

"Because I have a dog and it will be good for my dog to communicate/play with other dogs and to be able to stretch his legs in one area" — Temika

"Because dogs make everything better and they deserve a park of their own" — John

"I love dogs and I'm tired of stepping in dog poop." — Isyah

"We need a dog park in this community." — Luigi

"It would create community in the neighborhood." — Stacie

"My neighbor has a dog and would love a designated safe area."Katy

"Dogs will have a separate place to play and the children can play safe as well." — Sylvia

"It would be a good location and this ward needs one." — Sly

"There are so many dogs that are regularly walked through Oxon Run Park. Creating a dog park will allow residents to congregate socially-distanced and get to know those in the area." — Chris

"I have a dog and he’s very social, so I know he’d love to make friends in a dog park in his community." — Ajan

"I have dogs and it would be great for the community."Patricia

"To give dogs an opportunity to socialize with other dogs, and it’s a way to meet others who live in our community" — Mellanie

"So my dogs can have a place to run in their neighborhood, rather than going out to VA to use their spacious and animal-friendly areas" — Ruth

"Amenities available to people north of the river should be normalized across the district, not be gated off from Southeast." — Carl

"It would be nice to have a dog park we could walk to instead of having to get in the car and go across the bridge to NW or to SW." — Loleta

"A designated dog space will decrease unleashed dogs walking and pooping on the Oxon Run trail." — Morgan

"Dog parks are a great way to allow dog owners to have a dedicated facility for their dog and other dogs to socialize, get exercise, and be happy. Owners will also get more exercise and spend more time outside as a result. Since there are no dog parks in Ward 8, this is much overdue. I strongly support pushing DC DPR to put a dedicated dog park in at this location!"Alex

"I have a dog with no park to go to in this vicinity." — Don

"We need access in the area for our dogs to play safely." — Pamela

"Because I am a dog owner with no convenient dog park where the dogs and my son can feel safe" — Chaunna

"Many of my friends with dogs live in Ward 8 and it would be nice to have the opportunity to have a place we can come together with our pets. In addition, the dog community is one that has developed significantly around the city and a place to unite, meet and greet, network, etc. is essential for community- and city-wide growth and development, especially amongst residents." — Jasmine

Hey, stop scrolling!

Wow, that was a lot, huh? And that wasn't even everyone who signed the petition. If you skipped to this point, though, we've paraphrased some of the most common sentiments for you:

  • “Ward 8 deserves the same amenities as other wards. Black people have dogs, too!”

  • “Our dogs need opportunities to play and socialize off-leash.”

  • “We shouldn’t have to travel to another ward or outside the city to go to a dog park.”

  • “I would feel safer taking my dog to a dedicated fenced-in dog park.”

  • “It’s a great way to meet new people who live in the neighborhood.”

  • “A dog park would help bring the community together.”

  • “I’m tired of unleashed dogs and people not cleaning up their dog’s poop in the park.”

Add your own name and reason for wanting a dog park in Oxon Run Park to the petition here!