The City of Cockburn will act on the wishes of the community to establish a 600m section of beach for on-lead dogs and their owners in North Coogee.
The area will be established along the 200m shoreline of Chelydra Point Beach at Lot 2161 McTaggart Cove and 400m of the adjoining southern end of the C.Y. O’Connor Beach dog exercise area, and will come into effect on 14 March.
More than 63 per cent of 1,986 respondents to a community survey sent to 4,820 Cockburn households supported the establishment of a dog on-lead area at this formerly dog-prohibited location, known as Option A, during community consultation conducted by external provider Catalyse Pty Ltd between 11 October and 5 November 2021.
Another 45 per cent of respondents to the mail-in and online survey preferred outright the North Coogee location incorporating both Chelydra Beach and 400m of the C.Y. O’Connor Beach dog exercise area.
Cockburn Council voted at its Ordinary Council Meeting on Thursday 10 February to provide 28 days’ notice, as required under the Local Government Act 1995, of its intention to establish the new dog on-leash only beach.
From 14 March, dogs using this 600m section of beach in North Coogee must always be on a lead, with City Rangers planning regular patrols to provide dog owners with education and infringements where necessary.
Additional signage and CCTV will be installed at the beach to help monitor the area for compliance purposes.
The City advertised four options for consideration during the community consultation, following endorsement by Cockburn Council at its ordinary meeting on 8 July 2021.
Of the 1,986 survey responses, 1,682 self-identified as City of Cockburn ratepayers.
The survey was sent to most households in North Coogee, particularly targeting the Port Coogee estate - about 820 dwellings - and another 4,000 households across the City were randomly selected to participate with a unique code to verify responses.
When responses were weighted against the ratio of dog owners vs non-dog owners, 60 per cent of respondents still preferred to have a dog on-leash beach in the City as the beach will continue to be accessible for non-dog owners.
City of Cockburn Head of Community Safety and Ranger Services Mike Emery said the community was supportive of the City providing a beach where dogs needing to remain on a leash could enjoy the local coastal environment safely with their owners.
He said the North Coogee location was easy for dogs and their owners to access, and it would also be easy for City staff to conduct regular patrols to ensure compliance with the new ruling.
Survey participants preferred the North Coogee location, known as Option A, for six reasons:
1. The safety and comfort of on-leash dogs and beach users
2. Some dogs can only be exercised on a leash, such as anxious and reactive dogs
3. Dog owners want more flexible options for exercising their dogs
4. This area of the beach can be delineated more clearly to avoid conflict between on-leash and off-leash dogs
5. This area provides sufficient space, and
6. It is the fairest option to accommodate all types of beach users.
Read the 10 February Ordinary Council Meeting Agenda item via the City’s website here
To find out where you can take your dog in the City of Cockburn, visit the City’s website here