There are currently 715 dogs registered to residents in Pokeno but, until recently, the closest off-lead dog exercise area available is in Tuakau.
In 2014/15 Waikato District Council reviewed its Dog Control Bylaw and Policy. During that consultation, members of the Pokeno community raised concerns that there were no off-lead dog exercise areas in the Pokeno area. Unfortunately, at that time, no suitable areas were identified. However, following residents concerns, Council suggested that a portion of the Pokeno Domain may be suitable for an off-lead area.
During the 2014/15 Dog Control Bylaw and Policy members of the Tamahere community expressed concern that there were no off-lead dog exercise areas for the community to use. Unfortunately Council did not identify any suitable locations at the time.
Since that time, Tamahere residents have suggested the river walkway as a suitable area. This area was again suggested as suitable during the recent consultation process for the Parks and Reserves Management Plan.
Following these suggestions, Council proposed that a portion of the Te Awa Reserve river walkway is made an off-lead dog exercise area.
During the consultation period that was open between 20 July and 24 August, Council received 150 submissions. Of those submissions received 95% were in support of the off-lead exercise in Pokeno and 80% were in support for the off-lead area in Tamahere.