Eventually the Parks Department listened. As ex-parks commissioner Henry J. Stern stated, "starting the run was just a good idea".
The Parks Department included one caveat: the run must be managed and FULLY FUNDED by the community (not the city.) The community which fought so hard to make FIRST RUN a reality, raised money and organized volunteers.
Today, even those who have no love for dogs say that FIRST RUN was instrumental in bringing the park back from its dark days -- providing a center of community renewal that the neighborhood desperately needed. Today, First Run is a source of immense pride and devotion for countless people.
FIRST RUN was established before much was known about constructing healthy, off-leash areas for dogs. First Run is currently working with New York Parks Department to renovate the run.
- All dogs can benefit from off-leash play but may require early socilization and basic obedience training in order to get along inside enclosed dog runs.
- If there is a fight between dogs, owners should exchange information right away. By N.Y. law, dog owners are financially responsible for any injury caused by their dog. If an injury occurs, owners should exchange contact information and settle all financial matters before returning to the run. In situations where both dogs were at "fault," dog run etiquette suggest you pay at least half the other dogs vet bills.
- Dogs should be neutered in order to use the run safely. Unneutered dogs are likely to be attacked or provoke aggression. (Puppies under 6 months get to keep'em)
- MONITORING THE RUN is the duty of all its users. It is up to the patrons to patrol the activity of ALL dogs and request that owners remove an animal that may be "having a bad day". Dog squabbles are part of dog play. However DOG FIGHTS are not. It's the duty of the patrons of the run to prevent them before they occur and see that the posted rules are followed.
- The owner of a dog in heat (or near heat) should never be in the run in the first place. The owner of an unneutered dog should be within spitting distance of their dog and always on guard. These owners must assume the complete financial burden themselves since bringing an intact dog into the run is a known risk and they've assumed it -- as well as placed the rest of our dogs at risk. Warnings about intact males and females in heat are clearly posted on both gates of the run.
1. No dogs without people. No people without dogs.
2. No dog toys. Toys cause fight.
3. Neuter/spay your dog to use the run safely. Intact dogs are likely to provoke aggression or be attacked. (Puppies under 6 months get to keep'em.)
4. Clean up after your dog.
5. Watch your dog at all times. Discourage barking and digging. If your dog digs a whole, fill it in.
6. No agrressive dogs. Do not let your dog pester or mount other dogs. Watch for signs of aggression.
7. No dogs in heat.
8. All dogs must be licensed and immunized. No dogs with communicable diseases or infections.
9. If your dog gets into a fight, exchange contact information and leave. You are financially responsible for any injury caused by your dog. Please settle all vet bills with the owner before returning to the run.
10. Bring children at your own risk. Kids must be with an adult and remained seated.
11. No spike, prong or pinch collars.
12. No glass containers or food.
13. The small dog run is for dogs 23lbs. and under (and not for use by large breed puppies.)