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Holden, Maine – For Dogs will host a public seminar presented by John and Diane Cunningham of Paws Down Training Service on Saturday May 4 at 10:00 am at their Holden location on route 1A (251 Main Road). The event will help to raise funds for the expansion and completion of the Bangor Dog Park, with the five-dollar fee from audience members donated to the park. The seminar presenters are well-known for their work in canine and owner/handler skills and training of all breeds. The seminar will provide information on how to ‘read’ dog body language, key to understanding dogs’ behavior, warning signs, and play signals. Audience question and answer time will follow the formal presentation. Fundraisers like this event are important for the dog park, since no taxpayer funds are being used to build the Park.

In collaboration with Bangor Parks and Recreation, Friends of the Bangor Dog Park, and all-volunteer group, is working to complete and maintain the dog park, which opened following Phase 1 construction in December 2012. Phase 2 will expand the large dog area and build a training yard, reducing pressure on the existing park areas, which see high usage. The park provides a safe place for dogs to play and enjoy off-leash time with their owners and other dogs. The partnership with Bangor Parks and Recreation makes the project’s benefits lasting and sustainable. Not only do dog parks provide health and socialization benefits for dogs, but also for pet owners. Tourists increasingly seek out per-friendly amenities like dog parks when planning a trip, and pet-related businesses have had steady economic growth as U.S. Citizens now have more dogs than children.

Dog parks have been shown to improve economic vitality and the quality of life in surrounding communities as well as for dogs and their owners. In Maine, off-leash fenced dog parks currently exist in Portland, Bath, Kennebunk, Lewiston, Augusta, and Belfast. The City of Belfast opened their Dog Park in 2008, using a similar process with a Friends group working with City government.

In addition to fund raising events, the Friends are seeking sponsorships from companies and individuals. More information is available at bangordogpark.org or on the Bangor Dog Park Facebook page.

For additional information on the Canine Body Language, Contact: Christy Cunningham, 207-989-7297; fordogsboutique@gmail.com