Representatives of Metro Parks and the city of Hilliard met March 21 to look over plans for a new 5-acre dog park scheduled to open this year at the Heritage Trail.

Representatives of Metro Parks and the city of Hilliard met March 21 to look over plans for a new 5-acre dog park scheduled to open this year at the Heritage Trail.

"They were really excited to get it going," said Anne Hall, parks planner for the Metro Parks, of Hilliard's response.

Thirteen Metro Parks have pet-friendly trails.

Scioto Audubon in Columbus has a dog park and Walnut Woods in Groveport is having a dog park built.

Hilliard's potential pooch park would be at 7262 Hayden Run Road, northwest of an existing parking lot. The land is currently an open field, but once developed would have a double-entry gate, which will help prevent dogs from running away.

There will also be a splash pad, which Hall said is "like a water park for the dogs. They'll have little fire hydrants and they'll spray out water for the dogs to play in."

Big dogs would have four grassy acres to fetch Frisbees and balls, and smaller canines can play in the other acre. Additional touches would include a doggie drinking fountain/dog washing area, gravel areas to keep the dogs' feet clean and possible agility courses.

Hall said Metro Parks owns the land and will patrol it daily.

"There's not going to be anyone there constantly, but they will come through and check to make sure everything is OK," Hall said.

"The city of Hilliard will be responsible for maintaining the properties, and then any support that we need maintaining or repairs to the facility, the Metro Parks have been gracious enough to offer their services," said Steve Mazer, recreation and parks director.

The dog park doesn't have a name or an estimated cost. Hall said it may be open in the fall.

"Although we're at the infancy stage of the dog park, we're gonna get there," Mazer said. "It's going to be great for the communities. We try to give the community what they like to have."

Hall and Mazer said they are seeking financial and volunteer support to help make the park a reality.

"Any way that we can get this project done and reduce the cost to the taxpayer or the Metro Parks, we will absolutely welcome and appreciate," Mazer said.

To assist, call the Hilliard Recreation and Parks Department at (614) 876-5200.