Twice a week (all being well) I get to take my dogs to a very special place where they can just run and be dogs. What makes it so special is that I have it all to myself.
I’m honestly not the most sociable person on the planet, so this suits me perfectly.
Over the years I’ve had various dogs (dachshunds and Bouviers) attacked out of the blue by ‘friendly’ dogs. I currently have one dog that cannot abide having his space invaded. So to not have to worry about other dogs rushing up to us is just wonderful.
I asked Christelle Genis, who runs this gem of a venue, to give some more information:
What is K9@play?
It is a safe and secure environment, located in the Randburg Sports Complex, where dogs can sniff, play, engage in obstacles and build confidence. We also host weekly agility and puppy classes.
How did it come about?
It has always been a dream of mine to offer an exclusive area for owners and their dogs, especially those who are not comfortable in public parks. The grounds are hired out to one family at a time or friends who have dogs that know each other well.
How did you get involved and why?
I used to attend obedience lessons at the venue on Thursdays and when our trainer announced that she would be relocating, I jumped at the chance and I approached a long-time behaviourist friend of mine and together we started K9@Play.
How can people get to use K9@play? In other words do they need to become a member/register, whatever?
Anyone can make use of the grounds as long as they have signed indemnities, sent proof of vaccination etc. It is vital the area is kept safe for all using the grounds especially because of the puppies.
What limitations are there to access (e.g. vaccinations, bitches in season, etc.)?
There are no limitations! Whatever type of dog you own, big or small, quiet or wild, all are welcome.
How much does it cost?
We charge R150 per hour.
How do they book?
Via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. We will confirm the availability of your preferred slot and send through all the required information to access the grounds over WhatsApp. Payment confirms the booking. Weekend slots fill up very fast, so weekend bookings need to be done early in the week, whereas weekdays are more flexible.
What facilities are/are not available?
There is safe secure parking inside a locked fence area but no water or toilets. Everyone needs to bring water and bowls for their dogs as well as poop bags to pick up after them.
Are there classes of any sort? If so, what and how do they find more information?
Fun agility on Saturday mornings hosted by Lesley Burns (082 336 6330)
Puppy classes hosted by my partner and registered behaviourist, Adrienne Hawkins (083 400 2987, email@example.com)
We also have a Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/K9atPlay