By Morgan Pilz, Staff Writer
(May 23, 2019) Ocean Pines Recreation and Parks Department established key card access to its dog park at the Manklin Meadows complex in the south end of the community on Monday, May 13.
The dog park, which includes benches, a water station, and dog waste bags, features an enclosed space and a double-gated entry.
The fenced-in area allows dogs to run free and play, allowing for socialization and recreation in a safe environment. Separate sections are available for large dogs more than 28 pounds and for smaller dogs less than 28 pounds to ensure a positive, tail-wagging experience for everyone.
“Last year, the dog park was free and open to the public only because we did not have a locked gate,” Ocean Pines Recreation and Parks Program Supervisor Debbie Donahue said. “For liability reasons, we left it open last year, but we got a new key card lock installed on the gate. This way, the only ones who come into the gate and to the park will be registered.”
All registered dogs must be at least 4 months old, licensed and up-to-date on all their shots. Records of shots, including rabies vaccination, must be presented at the time of registration. Each dog membership will include a key card for access to the park.
“This eliminates bringing in a dog and something unsafe happening to a person or to another dog,” Donahue said.
Residents and guests can register their dogs at the Ocean Pines Community Center located on 235 Ocean Parkway by filling out the forms and providing documentation of up-to-date vaccinations and shots. After paying the registration fee, the owners will receive a key card and a dog tag per registered pet.
The annual cost of each dog is $25 for residents and $50 dollars for non-residents. One additional dog may be registered at the same time for $10 for residents and $15 for nonresidents. No more than two dogs can be registered to one owner.
“One person can handle two dogs,” Donahue said. “We don’t want one person with four dogs trying to handle all of them with two over here, two over there, not attended, and so on.”
In the event a key card is misplaced, broken, or defective, a replacement can be purchased at the community center for $5.
Maintenance is continuing around the dog park, Donahue said, but the park itself will be mostly unaffected and can be used.
“We’d like to let everyone know we are working on getting new fixtures, getting new mulch and everything in there,” Donahue said. “[Summer] is coming and we’re busy getting everything done, but the dog park is on schedule and on the radar.”
Memberships will run from May 13 to next April.
For more information about the Ocean Pines Dog Park registrations, call the Ocean Pines Community Center at 410-641-7052.