Appleton shoots down change to allow dogs in parks

The city’s council voted overwhelmingly Wednesday night to keep existing rules and not allow leashed dogs in the city’s 28 parks.

A 11-4 vote shot down the proposal that has been discussed since early December. It would have allowed dogs in parks on eight-foot leashes and under control of owners.

Alderman Kyle Lobner pushed the change and warned against the fear of potential harm.

“We keep hearing concerns, but the facts don’t back up the concerns,” Lobner said. “We’ve consulted the public safety experts and they think it could work and other cities do it.”

But city residents flooded aldermen with negative feedback over the change in recent weeks, said Chris Croatt, the council’s chair.

“We have a dog park in Outagamie County, and people don’t want to be bothered by dogs in our parks,” Croatt said. “I have concerns about enforcement and droppings.”

The city floated installing about 30 bag dispensers in the parks that would cost roughly $15,000.

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