Minogue Park is a popular location for dog owners to exercise their pets, and includes a designated off-leash dog exercise area.
Hamilton City Council staff have become aware of online and social media speculation linking the Council's management of the park to the death of two dogs exercised there.
There have been suggestions the Council has laid poison baits in the park as part of pest control operations, and the dogs may have eaten those baits which has led to their death.
We can categorically state we have had no pest control poison in Minogue Park for more than two and a half years. We have also sent staff to inspect the park to ensure there is no poison laid anywhere in the park by other groups or individuals.
The Council has also had no contact from the owners of the two animals which died after being exercised at Minogue Park in recent weeks – so far, all we have to work from is social media commentary which has been passed on to our staff. The owners of those dogs, and any others which have become unwell after exercising in the park, are urged to contact the Council's Parks and Recreation Unit.
We do know Minogue Park's Lake Rotokaeo has seasonal growths of Cyanobacteria, in the form of an algae which is currently present there. The Cyanobacteria is potentially toxic and there are signs in place around the park and the lake warning people to keep their pets and themselves out of the water – we want to reiterate this message. The area around Lake Rotokaeo is not part of the off-leash dog exercise area and dogs near the lake should be under the close control of owners.
The Council takes its park management and dog control responsibilities seriously, and many of our staff are dog owners themselves. We also aim to cater to the needs of our community as best we can, including making areas available for dogs to be exercised.
We'd also like to remind dog owners The Dog Control Act 1996 and the Hamilton City Council Dog Control Bylaw 2015 clearly state a dog owner must at all times have control over their dog, making them responsible for the dog at all times – including on public parks.