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Delmar park a dream for dog lovers

Imagine a great expanse of open green lawn, speckled with bright yellow tennis balls. It's a dog's dream come true, and it can be found at the Delmar Dog Park on Route 32 across from Line Drive Park.

According to veterinarian Carrie O'Loughlin of the Delmar Animal Hospital, visiting the park can be a \great benefit for socializing and exercising your dog.

Greg Burnham, a frequent visitor to the park said it is "the best dog park around as far as appearance, and there is more open space compared to other area dog parks."

Pet owners have been bringing their eager canines to the park for a good run and play since it opened Nov. 18, 2000.

Nan Lanahan, administrator of Parks and Recreation, said there was a push by dog owners, who formed a committee and raised money to make the park a reality.

Lanahan said that some residents initially had concerns about noise and other issues after the park opened, but those concerns have dissipated, and her office has had few, if any, complaints or recent negative feedback.

To visit the dog park, a permit and dog tag are required through the town of Bethlehem. Lanahan said the $30 yearly fee covers "routine maintenance," which includes the costs of printing the tags, maintaining the park, replacing pooper scoopers, insurance and having the waste disposal system pumped as needed. The Town Clerk's office reports there are currently 269 dogs registered to use the park. Dog tags are occasionally checked for by Animal Control Officers.

The many amenities at the park include a small building to escape inclement weather, water bowls, water spigot, tennis balls, small wading pools for cooling off, pooper scoopers/waste disposal system, and benches/tables for the animals' two-legged escorts. The lower half of the park remains lit until 7 p.m. in the fall and winter.

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