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Portsmouth City Council is to open a new enclosed dog training area on Southsea Common in response to suggestions from local residents and dog walkers. The new training area, which is being created over the next few weeks, is located between Pembroke Road and Pier Road in Southsea and is intended to provide a safe, enclosed space for dogs that cannot confidently be let off their lead on open areas of the common.

Dog owners will be able to exercise and train dogs, who might be young or nervous, in an area that it is not open to the roads or the wider common. There will be dog waste and regular rubbish bins within the training area so that dog walkers can pick up after their pets and keep the space clean and safe for others. As in other dog walking spots around the city, owners will be responsible for their dogs and will need to be considerate of other people and pets using this space.

Councillor Ben Dowling, Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure and Economic Development, said: “Southsea Common is a great space for well-behaved dogs to stretch their legs and explore on and off the lead. However, an enclosed area is something dog owners have told us would be a helpful addition. This space will allow dog walkers the option to exercise, train and let their pets off the lead in an area with clear boundaries, protected from the roads and away from people who are relaxing or picnicking on the common. As always, we ask everyone using this area to make sure they are responsible for their dogs and pick up after their pets so the space remains safe and clean for others to enjoy.”

The new dog training area will be 1,600m² and enclosed by 1.2m high railings with two gated access points. Dog walkers are also reminded that seasonal changes have now come into effect restricting access for dogs to certain sections of beach until 1 October. Dog are not currently allowed on the beach at the Hotwalls or on the area between Southsea Castle and the Royal Marines statue on Eastney Esplanade. The annual change to the rules is to help keep the beaches clean and safe for beachgoers during busier months.