Gardner MA Big Oops – Epic Failure at Gardner Dog Park
UPDATE 5-3-22 1pm: We have reports that the water is on at the Gardner Dog Park. Many thanks to Gardner DPW.
In a City of big successes, this failure is a big OOPS, an avoidable stain on the reputation of a great City, an affront to public policy, a health hazard, and outright cruelty. The issue: No water for our thirsty dogs. Visitors to the park report that water is turned on at dog parks in other communities and Gardner residents report water is even turned on at Dunn’s Park. So what’s the excuse here? Park visitors are visibly outraged and report they have often cut visits short not only for this reason, but also for another one, the drainage issue contributing to high vet bills for some due to bacterial contamination in some standing water. Rather than taking some petty cash and a dump truck up to a local company selling cheap rock and dumping it over the standing water to instantly eliminate the hazard last Fall, this winter, and this Spring, the issue has been ignored. Dogs got sick and owners had big vet bills. And now, regular visitors to the Gardner Dog Park are demanding answers and their dogs are demanding a simple, refreshing drink of water. It’s that too much to ask? Ooops!
Mayor Nicholson has announced that partly due to funding from the Stanton Foundation which was approved last year, the park will get a covered enclosure, drainage work, and additional water work. Park visitors who report the Dog Park has had no running water since July 2021 are outraged and demanding priority status for this project And sad, thirsty dogs – well, they just want a drink.
What the Community thinks about this issue
What I learned from posting this article on Social Media is that not everyone agrees. Many responses included suggestions that people bring their own water and/or comments about the quality of Gardner water. Many suggest that they bring water for their kids when they come to the playground, so why should the dogs get special treatment? There were also unfounded allegations that the DPW hasn’t fixed the problem because vandals caused it – this was simply a false rumor. At one point last year the DPW was scheduled to fix the issue and turn on the water, but then it was overburdened by water main breaks in the City. The water stations were returned to the park before winter and signs placed on them that water would be off until Spring. For the record, Gardner water has been deemed safe to drink. Here’s a report. CLICK HERE.
How it’s done at Dunn State Park (thanks to Claude Vautour for photos)
Dunn’s Park provides water station for dogs and humans alike:
This is the bubbler that they have at Dunn’s Park where you can fill bottles, humans have a bubbler to drink out of and dogs can drink out of a bowl which is attached.
Thank you to all the people who responded on Social Media to my post. (both those who agreed and those who disagreed.) Everyone was respectful. If we could implement the above water solution at the Gardner Dog Park, it seems we might make everyone happy.