Unleashing frustration over dog park budget cuts - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

TUESDAY, March 16, 2010

Unleashing frustration over dog park budget cuts

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SAN DIEGO, Calif. (CBS 8) - It's a place where dogs can play without a leash. Lately though, Nate's Point at Balboa Park is turning into a dusty field because of the city's water restrictions. News 8 got reaction from dog owners.

Dog owners say large areas of dirt dotted with sparse patches of grass have replaced what used to be a lush, green field.

"I think it's horrible. I think it needs to be maintained to maintain a certain image of Balboa Park and the community," dog owner Wiley Kelley said. "It makes it really tough on owners to bring dogs to a muddy park or a dirty park because that's extra work to get the dog clean."

Pet owners have been told the drought is to blame for all of the dirt, and with San Diego under mandatory water restrictions, maintaining grass at the dog park is just not possible.

Dog owners like Josh Bishop say conserving water is key, even if it means using a little extra water when you get home.

"It's not too bad, I expect to give my dog a bath after I take him anywhere anyway, so it's for us it's not a big deal. The dogs seem to love it, they play like no other here," he said.

At the end of the day dog owners agree - they're just grateful the city has provided a place where dogs can run around off-leash.

"I'm happy there's at least a place to be social, because there's nothing like this for miles around," one dog owner said.

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