Making Tennessee more dog-friendly

An animal loving couple is working to make Tennessee the most dog-friendly state in the country.

Tennessee is on its way to becoming the most dog-friendly state in the US. The Boyd Foundation, a new philanthropic entity founded by Randy and Jenny Boyd, the founders of PetSafe®, is donating $1 million to a project called the Tennessee Dog Park Dash. This three-year endeavor aims to build and enhance hundreds of dog parks across the state.

In its first year, the Tennessee Dog Park Dash will fund 36 dog parks across the state with a grant program. The Boyd Foundation is awarding $900,000 to Tennessee communities evenly distributed across the state, while the final $100,000 will be awarded through a contest to find the most pet-friendly community in the state. Grant and contest winners will be announced in early July.

Want to make your community more pet-friendly? “Any community in Tennessee can apply,” says Rachel Worley, marketing specialist for the Boyd Foundation. “The application must come from a city or county leader and they must have land in mind. The money can only go towards building a new park or enhancing an existing one— not buying land.” Visit for the submission form.

Update: In July, The Boyd Foundation announced the winners of the 2018 Tennessee Dog Park Dash grant program. The 37 winning communities who will receive funds to build or enhance off-leash dog parks are:

  • West Tennessee:​ Bolivar, Brownsville, Camden, Decatur County, Dyersburg, Henderson, Humboldt, Lakeland, McKenzie, Memphis, Milan and Pickwick, Tennessee.
  • Middle Tennessee: ​Gallatin, Lawrenceburg, Lewisburg, Manchester, McMinnville, Mount Pleasant, Murfreesboro, Spring Hill and White House, Tennessee.
  • East Tennessee: ​Athens, Bristol, Chattanooga, Cleveland, Crossville, Erwin, Greeneville, Jonesborough, Kingsport, Kingston, Morristown, Rogersville, Spring City, Union County, and Jefferson County, Tennessee.
  • Grand Prize winner: ​Jackson, Tennessee


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