Hempstead Lake State Park is the Focus for Nassau County Off-Leash Initiative

The facilities for off-leash dogs within Nassau County are paltry and many dog owners who try to provide their dogs the exercise they require have received tickets and summons for their efforts. For a County that contains so many dogs – we believe that 30-40% of households in Nassau have at least one – this is an unacceptable situation.

As one of the first initiatives in our push for better off-leash facilities, we are trying to get the large grassy area at Hempstead Lake State Park which is already open to dogs on leash to be fenced-in and therefore legitimately allow dogs to go off-leash there. Most of the 775-acre park is prohibited to dogs completely and the small area to which they are permitted requires them to be on leash and is often taken over by others playing soccer or other sports. This should not be allowed to stand; dogs and their owners should be formally given facilities in which to exercise, socialize and play as well.

If you are interested in helping this effort there are several things you could do to help:

  1. 1. Sign a petition available online that calls for this. The petition is at http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/fenced-dog-rundog-park-for-hempstead-lake-park
  2. 2. Write a letter to State Senator Dean Skelos letting him know that you favor better off-leash facilities. There is no doubt that the only way we will win this fight is to let our legislators/representatives know that there is this need out there and also to impress upon them the number of people that support it. This is therefore somewhat of a numbers game so the more people who sign the petition and the more people who write, the stronger our case will be. Here is a sample letter which you are welcome to use and should give you a taste of the message we are looking to transmit:

Dear Senator Skelos, As a resident of Nassau County and a devoted dog owner, I believe that a place should be made available in Hempstead Lake Park where we have fencing and the legal right to let our dogs run free. No facility exists at the present time within a reasonable distance from this 775-acre state park. Furthermore, at present, dogs are not permitted off-leash, limiting the park’s utility for the safe and effective exercise of our pets. Dog owners should have the same access to state parks as other taxpayers. Please give this matter your attention. Thank you for your kind attention. Yours truly,

You can call or mail Sen. Skelos at:

  • District Office
  • 55 Front Street
  • Rockville Centre, NY 11570
  • Phone: (516) 766-8383

You can email him at skelos@senate.state.ny.us with your letter.

We are working to set up a meeting with Sen. Skelos in the next few weeks, so please send these letters before the end of January 2010 (if you miss this deadline, please write anyway).

Please also tell your family, friends and neighbors about this, and let officials know that New York State dog owners care about dog parks and vote!

If you have any questions, feel free to email us at lidog_news@yahoo.com.

Thanks for your support. Your (our) dogs will appreciate it.

Share via