PetSafe® Brand to Award Over $275,000 to Communities Across the Nation for Off-Leash Dog Parks
PetSafe® Brand Bark for Your Park™ Grant application process starts May 1
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (March 14, 2017) – With nearly 54.4 million dog-owning households in the United States,* dog parks have become an essential amenity for communities nationwide. The PetSafe® Bark for Your Park™ program has been helping to fill that need by funding community projects to build, improve and maintain off-leash dog parks. To date, PetSafe Brand has funded a total of 52 parks across the U.S. through the Bark for Your Park program, with at least two more opening soon. A dog park can provide the ideal setting and opportunity for dogs to get vital exercise and socialization, which are two major factors in reducing canine behavior issues.
“In the six years since we created the Bark for Your Park program, PetSafe Brand has seen entire communities unite to build their dream dog park and work together toward a common goal,” said Tracy Mulder, Marketing Manager, PetSafe Brand. “For us, the program is all about finding those enthusiastic communities that encourage responsible pet ownership with the desire to develop more dog-friendly spaces across the nation.”
Last year, the program awarded 25 communities a total of $275,000 in grants, including five new park awards valuing $25,000 each, 10 park makeover awards valuing $10,000 each and 10 park maintenance awards valuing $5,000 each. In 2016, one of the program’s applicants was the community of Friendswood, Texas, a town that spent five years planning, fundraising and rallying for a local dog park. Caden Fischer, a local Life Scout, worked with the City to build the park for his Eagle Scout project. The high school freshman was a true advocate for the park and hosted a variety of fundraisers to raise more than $11,000, which combined with the $25,000 grant from PetSafe Brand, was enough to make the Friendswood dog park dream a reality.
“The City of Friendswood’s dog park project had been placed on hold for several years due to a lack of funds, but with the help of the Bark for your Park program and a local prospective Eagle Scout, it finally became a reality,” said Heather Whitty, recreation manager for the City of Friendswood. “The original plan for a small .75-acre dog park has grown into an almost 2-acre dog park, complete with large and small dog spaces, agility equipment, a washing station, and splash pad, which is so much more than we could have ever dreamed of.”
Starting May 1 through June 30, communities can submit a grant application on www.petsafe.net/barkforyourpark. The applications will be reviewed by an internal committee, and the PetSafe Brand will select five communities to receive New Park Awards valuing $25,000 each, 10 communities to receive Makeover Awards valuing $10,000 each, and 10 communities to receive Enhancement Awards valuing $5,000 each. The chosen communities will be announced in September. Grant recipients will receive a combination of funds as well as commercial grade dog park equipment from UltraSite™, a PlayCore Company.
PetSafe Brand launched the nationwide Bark for Your Park program in 2011 with the goal of opening dog parks that community members, civic leaders and pet owners would truly love, use and support for years to come. In addition to the financial support, the Bark for Your Park program aims to create community bonds amongst pet owners that will last beyond the construction, makeover or maintenance of the dog park.
In conjunction with the 2017 Bark for Your Park grant-giving program, PetSafe Brand is launching National Dog Park Day on May 6, 2017. This annual event will encourage pet owners and communities across the country to gather on this day to celebrate their pets, learn about adoption and enjoy meeting with fellow residents of their community. PetSafe Brand will recognize National Dog Park Day with an event on May 6 in Knoxville that will be open to the community.
For more information about the Bark for Your Park program, how to get involved in National Dog Park Day or to submit a grant application, please visit www.petsafe.net/barkforyourpark, or watch this online video for an inside peek into the program.
About the PetSafe® Brand
PetSafe® Brand is an industry leader in the development of innovative pet behavioral, containment and lifestyle product solutions. PetSafe® Brand is owned by Radio Systems® Corporation and headquartered in Knoxville, Tenn. For more information, please visit www.petsafe.net or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.
* The American Pet Products Association’s National Pet Owners Survey (2015-2016)
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