Thornberry Off-Leash Dog Park Info & Rules

Park Permits

All dogs using the Thornberry Off-Leash Dog Park (TOP) must wear an annual permit tag on their collar. The permit is $25/year with a $5 discount for spay/neuter and an additional $5 discount for microchip. There is a low-income reduced fee available for qualifying individuals. The exception to the annual permit is a daily pass available for $5. Daily passes can be obtained at the park.

For this first year only (June 2006-December 2007), the park permit tag will be valid until December 31, 2007. After this first year, the permit tag will be valid for the entire calendar year.

To get a permit tag, you can print and fill out the permit application (PDF format or Word) and mail it, or go to the Robert A. Lee Recreation Center, corner of Gilbert and Burlington Streets, Iowa City, IA, or Iowa City Animal Care and Adoption Center, 111 Kirkwood Avenue, at the corner of South Clinton and Kirkwood in Iowa City. You need proof of rabies vaccination and spay/neuter and microchip, if applicable. Iowa City residents must have a current dog license to get a park tag.

Directions to Park

The Thornberry Off-Leash Dog Park is located in the Peninsula Park at the west end of Foster Road. Take Foster Road west off of Dubuque Street.

If you are coming from out of town:

  1. From I-80 (east if coming from I-380), take the Dubuque St. exit and go south about 1/2 mile to the first stop light.
  2. Turn right at the stop light onto Foster Road.
  3. Follow Foster Road up the hill, past the golf course of the left, and through the new Peninsula Neighborhood.
  4. Continue on the road and follow the signs to turn left to the dog park.

TOP encompasses 11 acres in three areas: small dogs, Lucky Pawz Playground for all dogs, and Emma’s Run Training and Agility Area.

Water at the Park

Please bring your own water containers to the park. We removed the water buckets from the yards because the water in them gets dirty and full of algae and dog spit (and worse) when left out. So please bring (and remove) your own water bowls. The water in the tank is still available for filling your containers.Pond

The pond is still under construction and will not be available to the dogs when the park opens. The gate to the pond in the large yard will be closed and locked; however, the back of the pond is not yet fenced so that the pond construction can continue. Please keep your dog away from the pond area until it is finished. Thank you for your patience.

Emma’s Run can be reserved for special events. When Emma’s Run has been reserved, that information will be posted in the News.

For the safety of all dogs and their human companions and for the enjoyment of all, please read and abide by the rules and etiquette suggestions. When you get to the park, please don’t congregate with your dogs at the entryway and gates, so that everyone can enter and exit easily.

All dogs must:

• be fully vaccinated for rabies.
• display a permit for use of the park.
• be accompanied by a responsible person at least 16 years of age.
• be on leash when entering or exiting the off-leash area. Note that only TOP is an off-leash area, and not the parking lot or the area surrounding the park.
• be under the handler’s visual contact and voice control at all times.

The following dogs are not allowed in the park

• vicious, dangerous or aggressive dogs
• dogs with communicable diseases
• dogs in heat

Dog handlers must

• clean up after their dogs using the black biodegradable bags available at the park. All dog waste should be deposited in the in-ground waste tank in the park entry area.
• carry a leash for each dog in the park.
• discourage dogs from excessive barking and dominating behavior such as staring, humping, and bullying.
• stop dogs from digging and fill holes made by their dog.
• be responsible for actions and behavior of their dogs at all times.
• remove pinch, choke, and spike collars prior to entering the park. This is a safety issue as dogs can be injured by such collars when playing.
• not have more than two dogs in the park at one time.

Electronic training devices are restricted to the Emma’s Run Training and Agility area.

Children under the age of 16 must be accompanied and supervised by a responsible adult.

Wheeled devices, except wheel chairs and strollers, are not allowed. No skateboards, bicycles, wagons, or roller blades, please.

Smoking is prohibited within the fenced areas.

No food allowed in the park except for small training treats.

Dogs over 18 inches at the shoulder are not allowed in the small dog yard. Small dogs are welcome to use the all yards at the park, but owners should be aware that it is possible for small dogs to be accidentally injured by larger dogs.

Users of the facility do so at their own risk.

Other park rules and ordinances may apply.

Violations should be reported to Iowa City Animal Services at 356-5295.