Dog population expected to be more than 8000 by 2032
The Peninsula's dog population is projected to be more than 8000 by 2032, according to a draft document being presented to tomorrow night's Central Coast Council meeting.
The community consultation draft of the Dogs in Open Space Action Plan projects 3926 dogs in total for Umina, Pearl Beach and Patonga and 3220 for Woy Woy and Blackwall.
Another 1000 in Ettalong and Booker Bay would bring the total to more than 8000.
The council meeting is being asked to place the draft on exhibition for public comment for at least 56 days.
The report also shows that the Peninsula has a high number of unregistered dogs and may be targeted with "projects to encourage owners to comply with dog registration regulations".
"Research over the past eight years strongly suggests that the number of dogs can be two to three times higher than on registration databases," the draft document states.
The document estimates there are currently around 2700 unregistered dogs on the Peninsula.
The Woy Woy and Blackwall planning district was estimated to have 1022 unregistered dogs, the highest number of any of the council's planning districts.
In addition to this, there were 947 in Umina, Pearl Beach and Patonga; and 724 in Ettalong Beach and Booker Bay.
The Umina, Pearl Beach and Patonga planning district currently has the highest number of registrations with 2703 dogs.
Current estimates are 3650 dogs in Umina, Pearl Beach and Patonga, and 2865 dogs in Woy Woy and Blackwall.
Among other provisions, the draft plan aims to maintain current dog exclusion areas, including sports fields and natural areas.
"Council does not allow dogs on sportsfields because of the conflict between sporting activities and dogs off leash, damage to the sports surface caused by dog urine and digging, dog litter not being picked up by dog owners, and general wear associated with dogs running to and from owners gathered on the sports field," the draft plan states.
"Dogs are not permitted in National Parks, within 10m of play equipment, on Coastal Open Space System sites, beaches apart from areas designated as 'dog off-leash areas', sand dunes and areas Council has designated 'Wildlife Protection Areas' and 'Natural Assets'."
Proposed actions include signage for dog exclusion zones, and that there is a 10 metre exclusion zone around play equipment in off-leash areas.
The plan also recommends that the McEvoy drainage easement off-leash area be "decommissioned and relocated, because it "conflicts with the shared use thoroughfare" and is "not currently listed as an off-leash area on Council's website and promotional material".
Central Coast Council agenda 2.13, 28 Jun 2022