Brian Bowman

Mayoral Candidate

Brian Bowman

Candidate - Mayor

Super Dog Friendly

Q1: Please describe what you have done in the past to serve the interest of Winnipeg dogs and dog owners - either in your own ward or in the city.
I am an avid supporter in creating more green space in our Winnipeg communities. Green space promotes healthy and active living in our neighbourhoods and creates a more positive environment for those who live in our city. Dog parks are a key component to this vision. Dog parks are an integral part to improving the quality of life for our citizens and the four-legged members of our respective families. My family and I love taking our dog, Indiana, to our local dog park at the Charleswood Dog Park and to the Assiniboine Park. Unfortunately, City Hall has not done enough to support our city’s dog parks and we have seen them close, shrink or become run down. If elected Mayor, I would encourage the development of more dog parks in our city and would promote innovation to help improve our city’s current dog parks. I have currently pledged that if elected, I would open a downtown fenced-in off-leash dog park.
Q2: Does your ward have an off-leash dog park? If not, do you know why not?
The Charleswood Dog Park is the off-leash park in my ward.
Q3: If you are elected, will you increase the number of dog parks in your ward. If so how will you do that? If you have specific locations in mind, please identify them.
In my ward, we need to explore an alternative location for the Charleswood Dog Park in the event that it closes. I fully support increasing the amount of dog parks in our City. We will be researching each ward to determine where new green space can be developed or allocated to be used for an off-leash dog park. If Mayor, I would open a downtown fenced in off-leash dog park.
Q4: Winnipeg lags behind many major Canadian cities in terms of the number and size of its off-leash areas, and level of service and amenities it offers dog park users. Why do you think this has happened? If elected, what would you do to change this?
Winnipeg has one of the largest dog ownership per capita in all of Canada. Unfortunately with the increase in the amount of dogs being owned by our citizens, we have seen a decrease in the amount of dog parks available to use. We are currently looking at many options to increase the amount of dog parks including, programs used in Regina that convert outdoor hockey rinks in the summer for dog-friendly usage, using our city’s outdoor pools during their respective offseason, crowd sourcing within communities to develop new dog-parks or better technology for parks already in existence.
Q5: Do you support WINDOG’s model for Winnipeg off-leash dog parks? Please provide reasons. If so, what will you do to implement it? If not, why not?
I think that WINDOG’s model for off-leash dog parks is what every city should aspire to. Dog parks, in addition to other types of green space, contribute immensely to the vibrancy of those communities and increases the quality of life of our citizens. As Mayor, I would love to speak with your membership to determine how City Hall can best help WINDOG implement your off-leash dog park model.
Q6: What specifically should the City do to create off-leash recreational space in older, well-established neighbourhoods?
As previously mentioned, we are currently looking at many options to increase the amount of dog parks in our communities, including, programs that convert outdoor hockey rinks in the summer for dog-friendly usage, using our city’s outdoor pools during their respective offseason, crowd sourcing within communities to develop new dog parks or better technology for parks already in existence.
Q7: If you are elected, what specifically will you do to improve Winnipeg's existing off-leash areas? Please consider the park infrastructure, facilities, and type and level of service the city offers and give examples.
I’ve proposed a new Office of Public Engagement to allow Winnipeg residents, including organizations such as WINDOG, to have greater dialogue with our municipal government. We will look to our citizens to learn directly from them, what their issues are, what their concerns are and how City Hall will best be able to provide for them. As Mayor, we look forward to speaking further with members of your organization so that we can increase and enhance our current dog parks in addition to providing new off-leash dog parks.
Q8: Winnipeg dog owners have been losing what little off-leash space they have, as it’s repurposed for other recreational users and for municipal profit through the sale and rental of off-leash space. If elected, what would you do to change this?
When I decided to run for Mayor, I looked at a city that would soon increase in size to one million people. I wanted to run in order to provide the leadership ar City Hall that will be necessary to take our great city to the next level; a city that is modern, provides a high quality of life to our citizens and to return Winnipeg to its former glory days of being the jewel of the prairies. Promoting active living in our communities and doing so by enhancing the green-space available to them, is a major contributor to the vision that I have for this city. We should not be selling off our assets for short term fixes. We need the long term vision from our leadership that will contribute to the long term health and vibrancy of our city. As Mayor, I will continue to support further development and innovation of off-leash dog parks in our city’s communities.
1 comment

    October 17, 2014, am31 12:04 AM

    Quote…… “convert outdoor hockey rinks in the summer for dog-friendly usage”,

    When I did this at Champlain Community Center in St. Boniface, providing a temporary fence each night for upwards of 15 dogs, whose owners scrupulously ensured that the area was left totally clean, I was reported to Animal Services by the maintenance man, employed part time one assumes, by the City. During a visit to my home by A.S. personnel I was warned that I would be fined if I continued to use this unused-for-7-months-of-the-year-area to exercise my dogs. My dogs were 3 of 15….yet this man knew my address from previous volunteering at the Center….so I was ripe for harassment.

    Our dogs had socialised and exercise at NO COST to the City, safely contained by my “fence” This is unlike skaters whose activities cost the taxpayers many hundreds of thousands of dollars each year. They had been safely contained on unused land. Yet dog owners are denied the opportunity to use OUR facilities for what interests us, and are, indeed, threatened with legal action and fines.

    Maybe Regina simply has more intelligent or more imaginative Councillors? I AM A DOG OWNER AND I VOTE….AND YOU GET MY VOTE, BRIAN

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