DUBUQUE, Iowa - Earlier this year the Dubuque City Council shot down a request to get rid of the city's ban on dogs in public parks.
That ban also included all city biking and hiking trails. Until now.
At Monday's meeting, the Dubuque City Council voted to allow dogs at 9 city owned trails. Including: A.Y. McDonald Park, The Mississippi River Walk, The Dubuque Marina, The Jaycee Trail, The Heritage Trail, Power Line Trail, The Northwest Arterial Trail, The Southern Levy Trail and Pyatigorsk Park.
Joan Efken has lived near Flat Iron Park for the past 3 years. But it was just last week she learned her dog, Kahlua, isn't allowed in the park.
Efken said, "The only reason I found out is I was here around lunch time and a city employee was in his truck eating lunch and saw me and came over and told me about it. "
Dogs are banned from all but 4 city parks, but city leaders admit the rules are unclear.
Dubuque Leisure Services Manager Marie Ware said, "we knew there was some signage in places where they would be but shouldn't be and there were others places were there was no signage at all. "
Some pet owners say they didn't know their dogs couldn't join them while walking on the city trails.
Ware said, "under our current ordinance no dogs are suppose to be on any trails in the city of Dubuque. "
But after Monday night's council vote dogs can now join their owners on many of those trails.It's a step in the right direction, says Efken, but not for those who don't live near a pet friendly trail.
"I don't know what the city wants us to do. Let them go on the city sidewalk to do their business? Would that be better? " said Efken.