By Anne McNulty

Southwest DC is about to become an even better neighborhood—for pets and people. In early April, Mars, Incorporated announced a $20,000 grant to the SWBID and the Humane Rescue Alliance to add additional amenities for pets and their owners throughout the Southwest neighborhood. As an extension of the company’s Better Cities for Pets program, this grant will go towards making life happier and healthier for people and pets in SWDC.

Announced in partnership with the SWBID during the National Cherry Blossom Festival, the grant will give Southwest a pet-friendly makeover by adding additional waste stations and educational signage throughout the neighborhood, creating a new responsible apartment dweller toolkit, and enabling more pet-friendly outdoor events with hands-free seating, portable hydration, and additional shade at the lot at 4th and M St., SW. All of these features will help cultivate a more welcoming environment for our Southwest neighbors and their four-legged friends.

“We’re excited about the creative solutions we can enact with the help of this grant,” said Lexie Albe, Deputy Executive Director at the SWBID. “We’re always looking for ways to improve the quality of life for residents of Southwest DC. Installing more amenities where they are needed will make our neighborhood a better, cleaner place for pets and people.”

Over the coming months, the SWBID will be working to install amenities and host educational workshops for pet owners. Based on an initial survey, the BID will work to make the lot at 4th and M and the Lansburgh Park Dog Park better spaces for pets and their owners. In addition, the BID will work closely with community members to identify other opportunities for improvements at public spaces across the neighborhood. If you have specific recommendations on both where to add amenities and what to focus on regarding educational programming, the BID would like to hear from you.

Visit to submit your thoughts via an online form and to stay in-the-know about community events where the BID will be looking for input.

Anne McNulty serves as the Communications Director for the SWBID.

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