City of Toronto dog off-leash areas open today

News Release

May 19, 2020

City of Toronto dog off-leash areas open today

The City of Toronto has opened its more than 70 dog off-leash areas following the Province of Ontario’s amendments to an order under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act that permit the use of dog off-leash areas.

While visiting a park, people must continue to practise physical distancing. Signage is being installed at the off-leash areas to remind dog owners of the importance of physical distancing to help stop the spread of COVID-19 to protect the safety and well-being of all residents. People must always stay two metres (six feet), or the length of three dogs, apart while visiting the City’s parks and dog off-leash areas.

The City of Toronto closed all parks amenities in March ahead of the provincial emergency order based on public health advice to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in the city. Details on the reopening of park amenities that are part of the province’s first phase of recovery will be announced in the coming days, as the City finalizes operational plans in consultation with Toronto Public Health.

The City’s COVID-19 Enforcement Team will continue monitoring popular parks across the city to ensure individuals and groups do not use closed park amenities and are practising physical distancing. Enforcement of the City’s physical distancing bylaw and the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act orders is ongoing.

Ontario officials confirmed today that outdoor playgrounds, play structures and equipment, fitness equipment, public swimming pools, splash pads and similar outdoor water facilities will remain closed until later stages of the reopening plan.

An image of the City’s physical distancing signage for dog off-leash areas is available at https://www.toronto.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/9036-Dog-Parks.png. More information about the City’s dog off-leash areas, including a list of locations, is available at https://www.toronto.ca/community-people/animals-pets/pets-in-the-city/dog-off-leash-areas/.

The City’s website is updated daily with the latest health advice and information about City services, social supports and economic recovery measures. Check https://toronto.ca/covid-19 for answers to common questions before contacting the Toronto Public Health COVID-19 Hotline or 311.

Quotes:

“One of our most popular parks amenities are off-leash dog parks. We are glad to be able to reopen the dog parks so that our beloved canine companions can again exercise in the City’s parks. I’m confident dog owners will do the right thing and practice physical distancing in these areas.”
– Mayor John Tory

“I am pleased we will be opening the City’s off-leash areas for our residents with dogs – it is another step toward recovery. It’s important that the safety and wellbeing of everyone involved is maintained at all times. Residents should continue to practise physical distancing while in the dog parks.”

– Councillor James Pasternak (Ward 6 York Centre) Chair of the Infrastructure and Environment Committee