Boyds to fund 10 Knox dog parks

Sandra ClarkFun Outdoors

Knox County residents now have the opportunity to nominate their neighborhood for grants to build new dog parks thanks to a partnership between Knox County, the city of Knoxville and a $500,000 donation from The Boyd Family Foundation.

The Boyd Family Foundation will give 10 dog park grants worth $50,000 each to five city and five county neighborhoods who apply and meet the criteria. The information is now available at The deadline to apply is June 30. The nomination period will be followed by a social engagement period from July 1-24 where neighborhoods are encouraged to show why they need a dog park on social media using the #KNDP.

“There is no better place to get to know your neighbors than a neighborhood dog park,” said Randy Boyd, of the Boyd Family Foundation. “Dog parks bring people and pets together from all different backgrounds and walks of life. We are honored to make Knox County and Knoxville the Most Pet Friendly Community in America.”

With the addition of the 10 dog parks, Knox County would rank No. 1 in dog parks per capita in the nation. Knox County is currently ranked 29th in the nation.

“Most of Knox County’s state of the art dog parks exist because of the generosity Randy Boyd has shown this community for more than a decade,” said Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs. “It has long been a priority to ensure Knox County is a pet-friendly community. As a pet owner myself, I know these new park additions will move us even further down the path to becoming one of the most pet-friendly places in America.”

“This is a generous gift from the Boyd Family Foundation, and my dog Bobo and I are excited to see more new dog parks soon to be built at the neighborhood level,” Knoxville Mayor Indya Kincannon said. “I encourage residents to share ideas and work together toward adding a wonderful new amenity and gathering place in their neighborhood.”

Studies show that people’s ability to walk to a dog park is the highest factor in determining the amount of use for the park. Knox Neighborhood Dog Parks is an effort to make sure people have a place to go that’s more convenient and closer to home.

Randy and Jenny Boyd established The Boyd Foundation in 2018 to support animal welfare and youth education in Tennessee. Randy Boyd is the president of the University of Tennessee, founder of PetSafe and former commissioner for the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development. Jenny Boyd is a Knoxville business owner and philanthropist who is passionate about animal welfare.

In addition to Knox Neighborhood Dog Parks, The Boyd Foundation’s Dog Park Dash has awarded 67 grants to communities all across Tennessee since 2018 and will be awarding another 33 in 2021, totaling $3 million in grants statewide.

This information is taken from a press release provided by The Boyd Foundation.

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