Largest Off-Leash Dog Park in Region

In June, the City of New Rochelle officially opened “Paws Place” at Ward Acres, the largest off-leash dog park in Westchester County. “Paws Place” features approximately three acres of meadows, with shade trees, park benches, and stone walls, surrounded by an unobtrusive black-coated deer fence. Additionally, Paws Place contains a separate 1/3-acre run for small dogs 30 pounds or less.

Paws Place is open for daily use by permit holders from sunrise to sunset. Leashed dogs may also be walked throughout the remainder of Ward Acres Park during this time. All persons entering Ward Acres with a dog must have a current Ward Acres dog permit for each dog. Persons providing a dog walking service are required to carry on their persons the permit(s) secured by the dog’s owner(s). No one may bring more than four dogs into Ward Acres at any given time.

To obtain or renew permits, dog owners must bring the current dog license and proof of current rabies vaccination of each dog along with proof of residency of the owner of the dog to the Parks and Recreation Department Office at City Hall, 515 North Avenue. Office hours are Monday-Friday from 8:30am to 4:30pm. The fee for 2008 calendar year is $50 per dog for New Rochelle residents and $100 per dog for non-residents.

It is no secret that the issue of dogs in Ward Acres has generated a great deal of controversy, and Paws Place has not satisfied everyone, but general feedback has been positive. I hope that this new facility, coupled with invasive vine removal and a number of other ecological improvements in the park will help Ward Acres realize its potential as a uniquely beautiful public resource, that is welcoming to all residents of our community.