Cheyenne, the capital city of Wyoming, is located in the southeast corner of that state, just a hop, skip and a jump from the Colorado border to the south and the Nebraska border to the east. It is a relatively small city, with about 60,000 inhabitants, and is laid out in such a way that no point of it seems to be more than 20 minutes from any other point, by car.
The Nancy Mockler Dog Park
The Nancy Mockler Dog Park, established in the year 2003 at 800 Southwest Drive (at the southwest edge of the city), is ideally situated for those travelers going north and south on I-25, as for example those driving north from Fort Collins, Colorado, past Cheyenne, up through Casper, and vice versa.
Directions for Travellers (Cheyenne Residents – just do a driving directions search on 800 Southwest Drive!)
If you’re passing by Cheyenne on I-25, you need only take Exit 7, which brings you up to an “oasis” type of area, a 4-corners with a McDonald’s (and past the McDonalds, the Wyoming Tourist Welcome Center – closed during winters) a Wendy’s, an Arby’s and a Subway, as well as a couple of gas stations. (All these restaurants and gas stations are clearly visible from the highway.)
If you need a bathroom yourself, stop at one of these locations. There are no porta-potties for people in the park.
From this area you will turn east onto College Drive. The very first local road on your left – no more than a hundred yards or down College – just in front of the Arby’s (and opposite the Fireworks building on the other side of the road), is Southwest Drive.
You will then drive .7 miles down the road. There will be several houses on your right hand side, and just a couple on your left. At the .7 mark you come to a large one-story building on your left, with a green roof. This is the Cheyenne Animal Shelter. Turn left into their parking lot, and then take a very sharp right to go down a short driveway to the parking lot for the Dog Park. (You’ll see a low sign just as you turn into the Animal Shelter driveway, directing you to the turn.)
Those folks passing through on Highway 85/Greeley Highway (which also runs north and south, right through the center of town) need only turn west on College, and drive about 2.5 miles until one reaches the Arby’s, and go past it before turning right onto Southwest Drive. (If you’re coming east/west on I-80, turn south onto Greeley/85 until you intersect with College, and then turn west onto College. (If you end up on College Drive, driving past Laramie County Community College on your left, you turned the wrong way and are heading into downtown Cheyenne! Turn back and head the other way!)
Features of the Park
The Nancy Mockler Dog Park consists of two adjacent fenced-in areas – one relatively small one for small dogs (smaller than 30 pounds) or large dogs that are old and infirm; and a much larger area, complete with a few obstacles for them to jump on or over, for large, active dogs.
There is no water laid on in the park, so you’ll have to bring your own water and water dishes. You are also expected to clean up after your dogs, and should any of them exhibit aggression, they must be removed immediately. (No female dogs in heat allowed. Also, no puppies under 4 months old allowed.)
The Dog Park is open all year round, from sunrise to sunset. Cheyenne (and indeed the whole of Wyoming) is extremely windy during the wintertime. The winds do not gust so much as steadily blow, sometimes in excess of 30 miles an hour. Your dogs may love it, but you will need to be well-wrapped up on those occasions. There is of course no smoking allowed.
Rules for the use of the dog park are listed on a large sign for all to see. Apart from the ones I’ve listed above, they are:
1. Use park at your own risk
2. Owners must clean up after their pets
3. Owners are legally responsible for their dogs and any injuries caused by them. Owners or handlers shall remove their dog at the first sign of aggression.
4. Dogs with history of, or who exhibit, dangerous or aggressive behavior are prohibited.
5. Limit 3 dogs per visit.
6. Dogs must be healthy, vaccinated, licensed and wearing tags.
7. Never leave dogs unattended.
8. All dogs must enter and leave on a leash. Owners must carry a leash at all times.
9. Children must be supervised.
10. Vegetation may have burrs or seeds that could get tangled in pet’s coat or lodged in their feet, ears or eyes.
11. Food and glass containers are not allowed inside the off-leash area.
12. Please place all trash and litter into the provided receptacles.
13. Please keep gates closed.