WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) — Up until now, Wheeling dog owners had to go to the East Wheeling dog park to socialize their pups.

But city officials have now unleashed a more convenient option in Elm Grove.

The Wheeling Park Commission is throwing a bone to dog walkers with the new Fitzsimmons Family Dog Park, along with the city and the Fitzsimmons family.

They collaborated today to cut the ribbon, which is part of an effort for smaller, more localized dog parks in the Friendly City.

The space between the White Palace and the golf course is now earmarked for dogs, with separate sections for ones over 30 pounds and ones under 30 pounds.

The Commission says it’s a preview of other improvements for its 100th anniversary in 2026.

And to grow beyond just the dog park itself, we are looking at adding a coffee shop to the White Palace, so it becomes a gathering place for the parents and you’ll have something to really enjoy while you’re down here.

Bob Peckenpaugh, President and CEO, Wheeling Park Commission

I walk my dog here at Wheeling Park quite often, and to have the ability to allow the dog to run off-leash is just an added amenity I think here, and so I’m excited about that.

Robert Herron, Wheeling City Manager

There is a water pump and bowls for the park’s four-legged occupants, as well as shady areas and benches for the humans.

The self-closing gates and parking also means it’s completely handicap accessible.