“Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole” – Roger Caras
In July 2004, a group of downtown residents joined together with the Denver’s Environmental Health Department to educate dog owners in Commons Park about Denver’s leash laws. Virtually every one of these dog owners asked about the possibility of an off-lease area somewhere downtown.
As a result, the same group of residents and interested neighbors joined together with a simple goal – finding a place for a dog to be a dog. We found a location – a parcel of land that is just under an acre at 19th and Bassett Street, just around the corned from Denver Skatepark and Commons Park . Most of the land was already dedicated park land, and Denver Parks and Recreation didn’t have the funding to build it out.
In 2006, The Railyard Dogs, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, was created to raise the funds to design and construct this park, and to otherwise improve the lives of Downtown Denver dogs.
The Railyard Dogs has changed its membership over the years as changes in staff in Parks and Recreation and Environmental Health have changed, and as our neighbors have changed. But the mission has remained strong among the core members.