Good news for dog parents in North Brooklyn: The McCarren Dog Park has reopened!
In the midst of big international news, the leptospirosis outbreak in the popular Williamsburg dog run became a national headline this January, especially after several dogs died soon after contracting the bacterial disease at McCarren Park.
Following news of the outbreak, the NYC Parks Department closed the dog run, in efforts to stop the spread of the disease, drain puddles which may be contaminated with leptospirosis and add new wood chips to the area. While the park was closed, local vets also encouraged getting dogs vaccinated for leptospirosis, a common annual vaccine for city pets.
Now, the McCarren Dog Run has officially reopened, puddle-free and freshly chipped. The dog run has two sections, one for small dogs (under twenty pounds) and a separate, larger area for bigger dogs.
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While dog runs, like the one at McCarren Park fall under the domain of the New York City Parks Department, they're also reliant on crews of neighborhood volunteers to maintain the area. A new group, McCarren Dog Run Allliance, has emerged to help imagine a "greener, safer, cleaner future for our dogs." The group encourages community advocacy, such as calling 311 to help report unhygienic conditions (like rats, rat holes or abandoned trash bags) at the dog runs and will also host meetings to help build community for local dog run visitors.
McCarren Dog Run Alliance has also launched a GoFundMe campaign to raise $15,000 to help install turf in the McCarren Dog run as well as a Change.org petition to drum up support for the installation of the turf.
North Brooklyn is home to two other public dog parks, including small and big dog runs at Greenpoint's McGolrick Park and East Williamsburg's Cooper Park.