The city of Atlanta has announced that it is going to renew enforcement of the leash law that prohibits dogs from being off-leash in city parks except in officially designated “Off Leash Dog Parks.”

The Atlanta Police Department will issue citations for violations of the city’s dog- leash ordinance, which requires dogs to be on leashes in public areas, acting Parks Director J. Nicholas Williams said.

“We want everyone to have a pleasurable experience in the parks this season,” Williams said. “Staff is working hard to ensure the parks are properly maintained, and off-leash dogs in the parks could potentially create a public safety issue for all park visitors.”

Williams said there have been concerns expressed by visitors about off-leash dogs roaming the parks. Dog owners are reminded that there are currently two dog parks ¬– at Piedmont Park and South Bend Park – where dogs are permitted off of their leashes. Dog parks offer a fenced, grassy or mulched area where dogs can roam off-leash safely.

If a community group is interested in creating an off-leash dog park, the parks office offers a “Creating an Off-Leash Dog Park Guide” available online to get the process started.