The Milton Dog Park recently just got a bit more interesting for canines of all shapes and sizes with the help of two girl scouts Katie Greiner and Emersyn Lazar of troop 6-174. They added a few unique touches to the park as part of the requirements for their Silver Awards.
Greiner put in place agility equipment in the big dog area at the park as a way for owners to fight dog obesity.
“Dog obesity is the number one most preventable condition in dogs, so I figured if we could prevent it we should prevent it by putting the dog equipment out,” she said. “Our local dog park is a great place but I thought it could use some interest and appeal for dogs and their owners.”
Greiner’s project consists of a dog walk and an adjustable height hurdle in the park.
Greiner, who has two dogs of her own, decided to add the exercise equipment, “because I am passionate about animals. When we found the dog park I thought that it needed a draw. By putting the agility equipment there I was hoping that people would bring their dogs there to exercise.”
Greiner had to advertise and fundraise for her project before bringing the equipment to the park on December 6 and completing the installation by the end of the month.
Greiner thanked Lowe’s for donating the majority of the equipment for her project.
“I had help from my mom, my mentor Rosemary Greiner and my adviser Rodney Watrous,” she said, adding that due to the pandemic her mom and her adviser were the only two who assisted in the installation.
Now that the project is completed, Katie said, “I’m super excited. I remember when we first put it in and when we went back the next day there were a bunch of paw prints on it, which is super exciting to see that it’s getting use and exciting for me to see people actually using it.”
Greiner said this area of the dog park is, “a really a nice space and it kind of goes unnoticed. I feel that not many people know about it.” She created a page at Facebook - Paws At Play 2020 - to get the word out to the community about the park.
Katie’s mother Jemma fully supported her daughter and is very pleased that she persevered and completed the project even in this time of Covid-19.
Girl Scout Emersyn Lazar installed two dog agility stations- a ramp and several weaving poles as well as a bench in the small dog area of the park. She has a Yorkie poodle.
“The whole idea was to get dogs to exercise more and to have more to do at the park because there wasn’t too much to do in the first place,” she said. “I decided to build something that any dog under 30 pounds could use and the owners won’t have to bring anything with them when they come.”
Emersyn began her project just after Thanksgiving and finished right before the December snowstorm.
Rosemary Greiner was also her mentor and her brothers Eric and Kevin Drozenski served as advisers.
“Eric helped me plan it and build all of the equipment,” she said.
Emersyn started scouting as a Daisy in kindergarten; “I’ve been doing girl scouting for eleven years. It’s really fun. We do a lot of community service and I like to volunteer and we have a great troop leader, Jolene Gaer. She’s very helpful and I like her a lot.”
Emersyn thanked Milton Hardware for donating rebar for the weaving poles. Both scouts also thanked Marlborough Supervisor Al Lanzetta and the Town Board for supporting their projects.
Emersyn’s mother Jessica Lazar is proud of the two girls.
“When Covid hit they pivoted and did something else and got together and worked on what kind of agility equipment they wanted to put in each of their sections of the park. They bended and went with what’s going on and it came out very nice.”
The Girl Scout Silver Award requires a minimum of 50 hours from planning, fundraising, research, budgeting, construction and community outreach. The girls next step is working toward their Gold Award.