LI-DOG – Who We Are
The Long Island Dog Owners Group (LI-DOG) is a non-profit organization that works to create dog parks and increase access to public parkland and beaches for Long Island dog owners and their dogs so they can enjoy Long Island’s beautiful parks and beaches just like other Long Island families.
LI-DOG has organized dog owners and worked with elected officials and Parks officials since 1998 to create 10 dog parks and at least 10 new on-leash dog walking trails on Long Island parkland. Among the off-leash areas LI-DOG has helped create are the Blydenburgh, Cherry Avenue, Huntington, Robinson Duck Farm, Selden and West Hills Dog Parks in Suffolk County plus the Eisenhower, Town of Oyster Bay at Massapequa, and Village of Valley Stream dog parks in Nassau County. In addition, LI-DOG worked with the Suffolk Parks Dept. to establish the off-leash beach at Mud Creek County Park in E. Patchogue.
More recently, LI-DOG has helped get 10 new on-leash dog walking trails designated in Nassau County and Town of Huntington parks where walking dogs was previously banned. These designated on-leash trails include trails in Eisenhower Park, Christopher Morley Park, Silver Lake Park and Massapequa Preserve in Nassau County and Dix Hills Park, Sunshine Acres and Twin Ponds North in Huntington. (Get the latest on LI-DOG’s current efforts, by going to News.)
LI-DOG also organizes and participates in dog-friendly events to raise money and awareness of our cause. Among LI-DOG’s most popular events are its signature Pack WalksTM—group on-leash dog walks in dog-friendly parks. The popularity of LI-DOG’s Pack Walks—they regularly attract dozens of dog owners and their dogs–highlights how much people need and want to enjoy walking their dogs in public parks. (To see upcoming dog-friendly events, go to Events.)
For years, veterinarians, trainers, and animal behaviorists have known that exercise and socialization are key to the health and well-being of dogs. “A tired dog is a good dog” is not an empty phrase. Exercise is also important for people’s health. In fact, there is considerable evidence that people who own dogs are more active physically than the general population. Given the nation’s problem with obesity and inactivity, public officials should do everything in their power to incent people to get out and exercise with the dogs for their health and the health of their dogs by providing them with access to adequate recreational space.
Instead, there are still many parks on Long Island where dog owners cannot walk their dogs even on-leash and many beaches remain off limits to Long Island dog owners, even during the off season. This is not right. Dog owners pay taxes that support public parkland just like everybody else, yet they can’t use it. Dog owners represent a very large proportion of the population. Forty-nine percent of American households own at least one dog, according to the American Pet Products Association. That’s 459,000 dog-owning households on Long Island. It’s time the needs of these families were addressed.
With our supporters continuing to grow and public officials increasingly aware of the benefits of dog ownership, we are confident LI-DOG can continue to expand dog-friendly parks and beaches on Long Island. But, we can’t do it alone. We need YOUR help. Join LI-DOG today! Together, we can improve the lives of thousands of dogs and the people who love them!