New pooch park proving popular

Since it opened last month, Guildford’s new off-lead dog park has been proving very popular among dog owners and their four-legged friends who have been travelling from near and far to enjoy what it has to offer.
This includes just over four acres of space to stretch, run, sniff and roll – all off-lead – as the mood occurs.
And then there’s the cooling dam for the pooches and plenty of leafy shade for their owners.
The owners of this unique privately owned dog park, that opened for free public use last month, are Guildford’s Lisa Huxley and Mick Williams who run Hilltop Kennels and Cattery on their wider 40 acre property at scenic Shicer Gully Road.
The couple who has five pampered pooches of their own have been running the kennels and cattery for more than a decade but only opened the dog park to the public in the past few weeks in response to public demand.
“So many people have been screaming for it,” Lisa says.
Mick and Lisa say you don’t have to be a client of their kennels to use the new park, and use is free of charge.
But many users have been leaving gold coin donations in appreciation for both the park and the dog dropping bags provided by dispenser at the park.
“People have been leaving gold coins on the bag dispenser, and we’ve decided to install an honesty box for park users to make a gold coin donation and we’ll be donating fifty percent to animal welfare causes, like the greyhound rescue program,” Mick says.
Lisa says the other fifty per cent of donations will cover the cost of dog tidy bags and park maintenance, with the new honesty box to soon be installed.
Mount Alexander Shire Council is also preparing to open its new municipal public off-lead dog park at Campbells Creek in coming months, and in the meantime Mick and Lisa says their dog park has been proving very strong demand exists for such a facility.
“Everyone has been so appreciative,” Lisa says.
“There are people who have been here every day including Christmas day.”
“We just recommend that the dogs that use the park have good recall skills and are not dog or people aggressive, and have had their C3 vaccination,” Mick says.
Park users should also be “wildlife aware” Mick says.
“And we provide the poo bags for a reason,” he laughs.
The new Hilltop Dog Park even has it’s own Facebook Page, Instagram account and Google Maps listing.

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