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The truth about dog parks

Dog parks are becoming increasingly popular across the country with an estimated 1,200 off-leash parks in the United States. According to Marilynn Glasser, author of Dog Park Design, Development and Operation, dog parks provide a unique opportunity for community's many dog owners to recreate in a safe, enjoyable outdoor environment with their friends. “We humans have always enjoyed our parks but it is wonderful for our dogs to have parks of their own, a place for them to run and play and socialize, just as we do,” Glasser says. “Plus, we get to watch them having fun—how terrific is that?”

Just how popular are dogs and off-leash parks? A recent article in Parks & Recreation offered a variety of interesting stats on dog owners and dog parks from across the country.

  • $7.5 billion: Estimated worth of the dog industry
  • 83.3 million:  Number of dogs owned as pets in the United States as of 2013
  • 56.7 million:  Number of U.S. households with dogs as of 2013
  • 1979:  The year Ohlone Dog Park, the world's first official dog park, was created in Berkeley, California
  • 1,200:  Estimated number of dog parks in operation in the United States
  • 569:  Number of dog parks in the 100 largest cities in the United States as of 2010

To read more statistics and the full article from Parks & Recreation, visit


Click here to learn more about Dog Park Design, Development and Operation.