Dog park water tested

by Ann van Engelen

The Selwyn District Council has tested the water at Foster Dog Park in Rolleston after reports that a dog that had been to the park got sick and died.

The Foster Dog Park allows dog owners to exercise their dogs off-leash in a safe and secure environment. The park is two hectares, fully fenced with double-gates, and contains car parking, dog wash facilities, seating and picnic facilities, three dog agility equipment areas, water play, and a secure area for small, young or nervous dogs.

“Test results have confirmed the presence of toxic cyanobacteria in algae in the Foster Dog Park pond, but no toxins have been detected in the water,” said a spokesperson.

“The advice the council has received is that a dog would need to eat algae from the algal mat at the bottom of the pond to be at risk of getting sick.

Although the risk to dogs is low, the pond will remain fenced while planned work is done to decrease the possibility of algae growth in the pond. This work is due to be done from Tuesday, October 29 to Friday, November 8.”

The work on the pond will involve brushing away the algae from the rocks in the pond and narrowing it to increase the rate of water flowing through.

“The council has carried out monitoring and cleaning of the pond, but we are reviewing our action plan to see how we can make things even safer including possibly adding signs to warn dog owners of the potential risk.”