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Orchard Road Park, Berlin, CT, A Dog Park, Review by Heather Veach

picture taken by Heather Veach

The dog park located on Orchard Road in Berlin, Connecticut is an excellent place to bring dogs.  This particular park was created as a result of a local physician leaving open space to the town of Berlin upon his passing.  Prior to the park being owned by the physician, it was used years ago as a ski area and a farm owned by the Sheer Family.  Most don’t know about this. It is nice to see it being used by the public again as a recreational area.  This dog park was created to not only walk a dog (leashed or unleashed), but also to hike the old trails throughout.  In addition to the trials, there is a small pond that many don’t even know about that the dogs can go for a dip in.  Since my dogs are labs, they found that pond without trouble on our very first visit.

Dog parks in general have many positive advantages for both the dogs and their owners.  For example, dogs are allowed to socialize in a very safe environment.  They can also exercise freely off their leash without their owners worrying about getting hit or encountering people who don’t care for dogs.  There are no cars, skateboards, or bikes to interfere with the dogs.  The area in which the Orchard Road is located is not very populated. There are some houses on the street, but they are not in a close vicinity to the area where the dogs roam free.

There is another dog park in Berlin, Connecticut called Bicentennial Park. That dog park is located at a dead end in a largely populated neighborhood.  Dogs had been roaming out of the park borders into the neighborhood, which upset some townspeople. The Bicentennial Park is now under warning and could possibly be forced to close. Because of the Orchard Road Park’s isolation, it has been able to stay open.

Orchard Road Park also allows the pet owners to socialize with other pet owners who usually have a lot in common and can relate to each other because of their similar likes and dislikes. The park also contains a beautiful garden that is open for the public to plant and grow plants. This garden is in a large fenced in area so that the dogs don’t get into any trouble. There is a good- sized parking lot to park a car while taking a dog for a walk. This is also something that Bicentennial Park does not offer. Bicentennial Park offers only street parking, which could be a hazard for a dog. It is very possible that the dogs could run out onto the street and get hit by a car if the owner is not careful. The Orchard Rd Park provides protection from the road.

The Orchard Road Park is also clean. It is obvious that people care about the environment and clean up after their dogs.  As long as the park remains clean, there shouldn’t be complaints and possibly shutting down the park. When people don’t follow the rules, things tend to get out of hand.

Although the pros far outweigh the cons, there are disadvantages to a dog park no matter how nice of a park it is.  For example, a friendly dog is inclined to run into an aggressive dog.  This of course could lead to a fight and the possibility of a dog getting hurt.  I have to say, this park is usually vacant leaving it completely free for us.  Another disadvantage of dog parks is the possibility of parasites attaching themselves to a dog. But a dog owner needs to realize that dogs can pick up tics anywhere. Just because you are at a dog park, it isn’t guaranteed a dog will come out with tics.  My dogs love to run through the tall grass and thick brush, so they tend to come home with tics. I realize this so when I get home, so I make sure they get checked carefully, and I remove any tics that we find.

Heather with her dogs

Regardless of the few negative things that might happen, we love our dog park and all we have to say to my dogs is, “go for a ride,” and they know exactly where we are going.  Those four little words put a smile on everyone’s face!

Enjoy the walk in the park!  Dog park that is.


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