Dogged determination in Paris bears fruit
Until January 1st 2019, most of the 200,000 dogs that live in Paris, were restricted from entering the majority of parks and gardens here. In fact, only 16% of the city’s green spaces allowed our four-legged friends access.
But now, dog owners are collectively giving a resounding ‘ap-paws’ to a new town hall ruling, that has finally lifted restrictions that have kept Paris canines banned!
“We are passing from a regime of prohibition to a regime of permission.”
As part of a range of moves attempting to widen the appeal of Paris parks, squares and gardens, which includes finally allowing us to ride our bikes in parks! Pénélope Komitès, Head of Green Spaces, has said she wants to make parks more welcoming.
As reported in The Guardian Komitès is quoted as saying
“There were many, many prohibitions in our previous regulations…we had a tendency, I think, to see parks as spaces that were very closed, very separate from public space.’
“We’re in the process of changing that. We’re transforming parks, and the uses of parks, at the demand of Parisians, who want parks to open longer, and who want to ride their bike through parks – which wasn’t possible until now…We are passing from a regime of prohibition to a regime of permission.”
Of course, there may be some people who are positively against this shift in policy. We aren’t all dog lovers, and let’s be honest, one of the biggest criticisms of this city is the horrendous amount of poop on the pavements, which has driven us all to despair at one time or another. In addition, many parents might be worried that their children may be at risk.
It seems as though the latter worry has, for now, been considered. In the new ruling:
- Dogs must be kept on leads
- Dogs must stay on the paths
- Dogs can only enter parks where there are no playgrounds
However, this may change as Pénélope Komitès is determined to make the city as dog-friendly as possible and might expand the program to include parks where there are playgrounds, so we will have to watch this space.
For a city famously known for its love of dogs, it’s no surprise that owners have been hounding the government for change. Especially as the majority live in high rise apartments. So it’s definitely a win for them. But for the rest of us, it’ll be a new Paris park-life experience, that might just give us a little ‘paws’ for thought!
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