WITHIN the next fortnight, Palma city council is to make 20 specially designed “green” areas available for dogs and their owners.
Environment councillor, Antoni Nadal, confirmed yesterday that the fenced-off strips of land will mean that dogs will be able to run free without the need for owners to walk them within built-up areas on long leads. These “caniparcs” (doggy parks), of between 40 and 60 square metres in size, will be dotted with waste bins, “pipicans” where owners will be obliged to deposit the excrement of their pets. No “hours of use” restrictions will be imposed.
Entrance into these compounds will be prohibited to children, to prevent any incident involving the animals; as well as to people who are not dog owners. The number of caniparcs, which will be monitored by environmental caretakers could increase according to urban development.
Those that are to come into operation within the fortnight are situated at Son Espanyolet, Camí del Reis, Gabriel Alzamora, Capitán Ramonell Boix and Llac dels Quatre Cantons. As an accompaniment to this new measure, the City Council will grant the use of two vehicles belonging to EMAYA, (the municipal water and rubbish collection company) to the “Green Patrols”. This specialist group will “keep an eye” on public use of the caniparcs and intervene in situations where people aren't complying with the law relating to waste disposal and collection. Some of the city's newer green zones already have these special areas for dogs, and they have proved to be popular with both pet owners and parents. Pet owners because they can let their dogs off the leash, and parents because their children can play in other parts of the park, where they will not come into contact with dog excrement. One of the biggest complaints made by visitors to Palma is the amount of dog excrement found in streets, including the main shopping thoroughfares.