Many dog owners feel that Tenerife’s blanket ban on dogs being allowed on the island’s beaches is extreme, and say that although they understand the issues, one beach at least could be opened for dog use. Some have even suggested that such a beach could be avidly policed so as to be profitable for the authorities, with fines for dog owners who are irresponsible in one way or another. These owners may now feel there is some hope in a project in Gran Canaria which has a beach, Playa de Bocabarranco, in the Jinámar area, dedicated to the play, sea bathing and exercise of dogs.
The Gran Canarian authorities say that this is a pioneering initiative in the Canaries and is aimed at improving the coexistence of pets and residents. The space available for dogs is some 6,000 square metres of beach chosen because its natural environment allows an automatic cleansing of the area – though manual cleaning will take place as well, and owners are required to pick up any mess left by their own pets, for which three receptacles are provided. The beach was opened today by the Councillor for Care of the Sea, Mimi González; the president of the Las Palmas Vets College, Manuel Morales; the director of the island animal refuge, Rosa González; and representatives of various collectives and animal protection associations.
The beach is now added to the six other areas of the Gran Canaria capital which are already animal friendly, namely Parque Alonso Quesada, Plaza de Canarias, Parque de Las Rehoyas, Parque Juan Pablo II, Parque San Telmo and Parque Manolo Millares. In all of these, use is dedicated to dogs that are correctly vaccinated and identified, treated for parasites, and in the company of an adult in control of them: those classified as potentially dangerous must be kept on a lead and be muzzled.