West Palm Beach
1. Greenbriar Dog Park
Located in the village of Wellington. Offers water stations, benches and 3 acres of land for dogs to roam.
2. Howard Dog Park
Located on Parker Road. To get there, take I-95 to Okachobee east to Parker Road. Then take a right and go past the fire station. Take a left, go to first stop sign, take another left and you will be on the back side of Howard Park. Go past the open soccer field; the fenced-in park is on your left. Open dawn to dusk.
3. Mary Brandon Park
Located two blocks south of Forest Hill Blvd. on Georgia Avenue. Open dawn to dusk. Offers fence, benches, parking, poop bags, picnic tables, trash cans, water.
"I had a weird experience at this park. I have been walking my dog at the park (which also has a dog run area) for 9 years and never had a problem. Today there was a guy there with what appeared to be a 'pit bull' puppy (ears were cropped) The gate was not completely closed but I didn't feel threatened walking by with my 11 year old Australian Shepherd. My dog is very, very friendly with all dogs. This [puppy] came charging out and started immediately fighting with my dog! The owner didn't seem to try hard enough to grab his dog until I screamed at him to get his dog. It was so weird that I gave the whole situation some serious thought. I am convinced that this was a 'fighting dog' in training. The guy seemed to want to see how the situation would 'play out.' BE ON YOUR GUARD. Even a harmless puppy can be a big problem. The guy was driving a black pick up truck. Watch out just in case I am right! I am not a pit bull hater. My sister has two wonderful pit bull dogs."
4. Dreher Park
This park is located across from the Palm Beach Zoo on Summitt Blvd. Just go into the park to the end, then you will see paw printed fire hydrants that lead to the dog park which has separate areas for small and large pups. Not well known at this time, so people with shy dogs might take advantage of it for a while, or at least until it becomes more well known and crowded.
5. Pooch Pines Dog Park
This park officially opened 08-21-04. Located at 7715 Forest Hill Blvd., within Okeeheelee Park on Forest Hill Boulevard, just east of Florida's Turnpike and west of West Palm Beach. Directions: From I-95, take Forest Hill Boulevard exit in West Palm Beach and travel west approximately 6 miles to the main Okeeheelee Park entrance on the north (right) side of the road. Turn right into park and follow the park road to the Pooch Pines sign. Turn right at the sign and the dog park is at the top of the hill.
Open sunrise to sunset daily except Wednesdays noon to 3 p.m. when it's closed for maintenance. News reports said this dog park cost $300,000. It offers a total of 5 acres, with separate fenced areas, two for large dogs and one for small dogs, double-gated entry, three gazebos, three drinking fountains, with fountains for the dogs attached, shaded benches, a paved dog-wash station, bike rack, poop bags, parking and trash cans.
For more information, contact the Palm Beach County Parks & Recreation Department by calling telephone 561- 966-6600, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
"This dog park is wonderful. It's located at what may be the highest point in the park. The hill allows for a cool breeze even in the middle of the summer. There are actually two separate large dog areas; one remains open while the other is maintained and the grass re-sodded.
"One issue is there's not enough shade from the harsh, direct sun. One gazebo in the large dog area means that all the people gather there. If all the people are there, then too many dogs are there also. This leads to fights and aggression. My advice: please don't hang out in the gazebo. Find a bench in the back under whatever shade trees are available.
"There also happens to be an abundance of apathetic people that let their dogs have too much freedom, i.e., aggressive behavior, mounting, displaying dominance in the gazebo area. But all in all, it's still the best park in the area."
NOTE: We can't visit every area on a regular basis, so if you have information about any dog parks or beaches, or any other animal recreation facilities, in the West Palm Beach area, please contact FloridaPets.net.