FARMINGTON -- Davis County is throwing Rover a bone the size of a 20,000-square-foot off-leash dog park.
The Legacy Events Center Dog Park, which officially opens today, is on the south end of the events center grounds at 151 S. 1100 West, Farmington.
"There are no off-leash dog parks in Davis County. This will be a first for Davis County," said Megan Hatch, Davis County Fair coordinator, who is helping market the park -- which seems to be a natural fit for its events center grounds.
"We're trying to show the public we're a public facility and not just an equestrian park," said Hatch, of the Legacy Events Center, which for years centered its activities around an indoor horse arena.
The dog park, to be open from dawn to dusk, will feature separate fenced areas for small and large dogs, Hatch said, but no dog younger than 6 months will be permitted in the park.
As the park gains in popularity, Hatch said, she can envision a need to expand it.
The off-leash dog park has the support of the Golden Spike Dog Obedience Club.
"I'm really excited about it -- and it's free," said Bonnie Kilgannon, club president.
Club members provided consulting work to the county on the project, said Kilgannon, who personally will be using the park because Davis County has so few on-leash dog parks.
At this time, the only people using the park have been a few local dog owners who have been bringing their pets over to the Legacy Events Center grounds to give them room to run.
But use of the park has been spotty to this point, said Hatch, who anticipates that changing after today's official park opening.
"I don't think people know it is open yet," she said, adding that word of mouth will change that.
Other park rules are:
- Dogs must be licensed and wearing a collar.
- No dangerous or vicious dogs.
- Owners must clean up after their dog, including properly disposing of waste.
- Dogs must be within sight and under voice control of owner.
- Dogs must be leashed before entering and leaving the park.
- No dogs that are in season or displaying symptoms of an illness will be permitted.
- Children younger than 12, smoking and glass containers are also prohibited in the park.
The trend is that people want to take their dogs to associate with other dogs, said Davis County Commissioner John Petroff Jr.
The county is also hosting more dog shows at Legacy Events Center, with those attending the shows indicating they would like an area where they can have their dogs run, Petroff said.
"The driving force behind it is community use," he said.
Once the park is open and the commission has had an opportunity to visit other dog parks, Petroff said, he can envision improvements being made to the county's new park.
The dog park is the latest effort by the county to have the Legacy Events Center appeal to a variety of interests, Hatch said.
The dog park will close during the Davis County Fair, at the events center Aug. 17-20. The park will also close when center events involve dogs and a need for the park green space.