Public speaks up on dog-friendly beaches

Amy Bell of Wollongong City Council and Goran Desnica with his dog Diva. Picture: ROBERT PEET
Amy Bell of Wollongong City Council and Goran Desnica with his dog Diva. Picture: ROBERT PEET

Wollongong council staff were kept busy over the weekend answering enquiries about a proposal to open more beaches to dogs.Information kiosks at Bellambi and Thirroul attracted about 160 enquiries, with people also visiting to collect pamphlets.Under the council's "traffic light" system, beaches will be designated either as red no-go zones for dogs, green off-leash areas or orange on-leash areas with dogs allowed before 9am and after 4pm in winter or 6pm in summer.

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  • Plan to open up majority of Wollongong beaches to dogs Dogs will be banned from coastal rock pools and from Coledale, Austinmer, North Wollongong, Belmore Basin and City beaches.Some existing off-leash areas will be extended and three new off-leash areas will be created.Dog owner Goran Desnica, who visited the kiosk at Thirroul Public School's Science and Eco Festival for Kids yesterday, said he was thrilled with the council's proposal."It's an excellent idea. We used to have to walk from our home at Thirroul to Little Austinmer for a run," he said."Then they opened part of McCauleys Beach, which was good news, and now this."There are many dog owners in this area so I'm sure everyone is going to be happy about it."Mr Desnica, who received his cocker spaniel Diva as a gift six years ago after he and his wife became empty nesters, assured detractors he would be responsible with the care of his pet.He displayed a plastic container that was attached to Diva's lead and which contained handy plastic bags for poop-scooping.The public can comment on the proposal until August 6. Further community kiosks are planned at Coledale, Stanwell Park and Warrawong.