BRENTWOOD -- Rob Sommers has not been able to bring his longhair Chihuahua, "Bella," to Brentwood's dog park because of how small she is compared with the larger canines that frequent it.
"She can't be around here with a lot of big dogs," the Brentwood resident said of "Bella" this week. "She has gotten trampled several times and I can't bring her here anymore."
Sommers also has a large dog who likes to play at King Park, Brentwood's designated recreational spot for local dogs off Sand Creek Road. He was thrilled to hear that the city plans to expand the park, adding a separate area for small dogs and installing dog play equipment and synthetic turf.
The Brentwood City Council approved plans last week for the purchase and installation of an additional one-quarter acre area to the west of the current dog park area for small dogs with a drinking fountain, shade trees, trash cans, seating and a mutt mitt holder. The park improvements will also include grading and drainage upgrades, replacing the decomposed granite in the existing dog park with synthetic turf, installing 11 pieces of dog play equipment and remodeling the entrance for access to both of the future designated dog areas.
"They need their own space," said Brentwood large dog owner Greg Leong of the small dog addition.
Leong said that the park sometimes draws as many as 20 to 30 dogs at one time, which can be overwhelming for smaller dogs. He also said that additional
The park project is being funded by local grants from the East Bay Regional Park District's Measure WW Park Bond Extension.
"This is something that I'm very excited about," said Brentwood City Councilman Joel Bryant. "It is great to have that source to get those things that will be direct benefits to the community."
The Measure WW money will also pay for an upcoming bocce ball court expansion and the construction of a Universal Abilities Playground, both at Veterans Park on Balfour Road.
Brentwood resident Nadine Childs said that her 6-year-old mini Pinscher, "Malcolm," is not intimidated by bigger dogs because he is a therapy dog and is familiar with dog park environments. On the other hand, she understands why the small dogs need their own area to play and exercise at King Park.
"Some little dogs need that separate space and the owners need that peace of mind too," Childs said.
Staff writer Paula King can be reached at 925-779-7174 or firstname.lastname@example.org.