JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Jaguars gained national attention Thursday, announcing plans to open the first dog park in an NFL stadium.
Pet Paradise, now the Official Pet Services Partner of the Jaguars, will staff and run the dog park. The company runs more than a dozen boarding and day camp facilities across the state of Florida, and it has a location on University Boulevard serving about 4,000 dogs per month.
Michael Munz, a dog owner, thinks it's a innovative idea that'll interest a wide number of people.
"Jacksonville is just becoming part of that trend where having your dog with you, whether it's going out for lunch or dinner, or going to sporting events now," Munz said. "People are taking their dogs more and more places."
The dog park will be located at the south end zone fan deck and will be staffed with a veterinarian. It will also include Pet Paradise's signature bone-shaped pool, which customers will recognize from some of its facilities.
Before owners can bring their dog, Lisa Tarr with Pet Paradise said they will have to show documentation proving the dog is up-to-date on vaccines and compatible with other dogs.
"We are really putting a fine-tooth comb and microscope on this," Tarr said. "The biggest question is, 'how do I bring my dog to the game?'"
Owners will be able to take their dog to the stadium and either stay with their pet, or hand them over to one of the staff members and pickup later.
The park will only accommodate 20 to 30 dogs, but guests might not have to pay extra as long as they have a ticket to the game. The specifics are being decided, as well as how owners can reserve a spot.
The dog park is expected to be completed in time for the first pre-season game in August. It'll be taken down temporarily in October to accommodate extra seating when the Florida Gators and Georgia Bulldogs go head-to-head.