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Welcome back, dogs: Duke Gardens retracts 'no pets' policy

Posted March 6

This weekend will be the peak for these white foxgloves. 
Credit: Lindsey Fleetwood
Courtesy: Duke Gardens

— After a no-pets policy was announced in 2016, leashed dogs are once again welcome in the Sarah P. Duke Gardens on Duke University's campus.

The change will be in effect immediately, the university said in a press release on Monday. According to officials, discussions between Duke administrators and members of the community led to the policy's retraction.

The no-pets policy, which went into effect on Jan. 1, was only in place for three months.

"No-pets policies have long been standard in botanic gardens nationwide, but Duke Gardens had been a rare exception since it opened in 1939," said executive director Bill LeFevre. "However, with the growth of the university and of Durham, it became more challenging to protect the plants and wildlife while also providing the best experience possible to visitors."

To protect the gardens, new rules apply to dog walkers and their four-legged companions.

Dogs will only be allowed in the Duke Gardens before 10 a.m. and after 5 p.m.

People walking their dogs are asked to use a non-retractable leash under 6 feet.

Several areas in the garden, including the Charlotte Brody Discovery Garden and the Blomquist Garden of Native Plants, remain off-limit to pets. As always, dogs are not allowed to wander into plant beds. Dog walkers can review the full pet policy online.

4 Comments

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  • Charles Williams Mar 6, 10:31 p.m.
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    I bet you're one of those country bumpkins that let's your dog run free like those undisciplined little brats these people own. The rules aren't unreasonable.

  • Charles Williams Mar 6, 10:28 p.m.
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    You should ALWAYS watch where you step. What makes this place any different?

  • Mike Watson Mar 6, 5:23 p.m.
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    Don't want to have to watch out where I step when I go to the gardens.

  • Coy McElheney Mar 6, 2:10 p.m.
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    Not much of a welcome. Too many rules to worry about . Glad i still live in the semi country.