It used to be known as a water bowl. You put it under a tap in a park, filled it up and a dog drank from it. Cost: about $20. But not anymore. Now our family pets require a “dog hydration station” and a South West council is considering rolling out a bunch of them for thirsty pooches at just under $10,000 a pop. Shire of Capel councillors were told the pedestal fountain with a pet-accessible water-dispensing attachment — otherwise known as a bowl lower down — was needed for dispensing H2O to hounds in public spaces, including off-leash dog areas. It comes after a petition signed by 232 canine-loving constituents called for the facility to be installed at Bibra Loop Lakes Park in Dalyellup. Councillors last week debated a motion to consider allocating $9551.70 of the 2022-2023 budget to go towards the dog hydration station with more to be potentially purchased in the future. A council report estimated the cost breakdown as follows: purchase of the hydration station at $6613.75, insulation for a water meter at $852.32, plumbing costs of $2,085.60 and annual servicing between $500 and $1000. The proposal, which passed on an 8-1 vote, authorised the council to investigate “potential need” for stations at other nominated dog-walking locations, each at the same cost. Cr Peter McCleery didn’t support the motion due to the high cost of the hydration station. “My main concern is the cost for one site, and if we are going to look at other sites it starts to add up,” he said. “I’ve had dogs, I’ve taken my own water and they have had drinks that way. “Bibra Loop is not that far from the lake, dogs aren’t too fussy, the dog I’m looking after at the moment is drinking out of a fish pond. I’ve got some real concerns about costs, I know looking at it further the prices could come down but I’m just not comfortable with it if it is multiple locations.” But shire president Doug Kitchen said the community had expressed their desire for the drinking fountain and it would be worth the cost. “From annual electors’ meeting last year, there has been an expressed desire of such facility,” he said. “The cost is a bit higher because we would need to connect a new water service to the fountain, and the detailed plans for the water service has not been done so it is just a rough estimate. “We are in the job of providing for our community, and if this is what they are after, then I don’t think it’s a waste of money.” Deputy shire president Sebastian Schiano supported the recommendation, explaining such developments were expected by younger residents in Dalyellup. “It has been a really good process to have this come from a grassroots community petition, have council accept to look into it and have the staff come back with a solution,” he said. “With the type of community and demographics in the shire, I imagine its utilisation would be quite high and it’s part of future planning.” The council will now consider including the expenditure in next year’s budget.