Saturday, March 21, 2009

News Reel - Off-Leash Dogs

Hey Seattle! Stop letting your dogs off leash in areas they are supposed to be restrained. I hate to say it, but the world doesn't like dogs running at large. (Don't ask me why because I am not sailing on that boat.)

Here's the thing. It seems so innocent, right? Yes, you should be allowed to have your dogs off leash anywhere but according to the laws that govern our cities, you're not. Some cities have been gracious enough to give you a place to have your dog off leash and to play with them. Some have not. Don't take advantage of those that have!

Your dog should be under control at all times - whether it is on leash or not. Many dog owners I know and have met along the way don't keep their dogs under control. Most haven't bothered to teach their dogs how to Heel ... and I don't think I could count on one hand how many I know who have taken the time to teach them how to Heel Off Leash!

I don't know why but they seem to think that it is great to let their dog be 'wild and free' ... maybe it's the deeply suppressed Hippie coming out in them? I don't know.

Off leash is just that. It is not an invitation to let your dogs run wild. If your dog is running around all willy-nilly and making itself a nuisance than people will complain.

Yes, you love your dog. Yes, I love your dog. Maybe your neighbour even loves your dog. But not everyone out there will. Many people out there don't want your dog coming close to them - some are afraid, some will be irritated with your dog, some just don't like animals. Be respectful of others and accept their choices. (Does no one follow the Golden Rule anymore?!)

Perhaps if your dog had great recall and dropped everything to run back to sit in front of you when you called, it wouldn't be a problem.

Perhaps if the possibility of the next guy coming along weren't walking his severely Dog Agressive dog (note he's in an ON leash area with his dog on a leash where he though it would be safe), it wouldn't be a problem (let's hope you don't ever have to make that emergency vet visit!).

Perhaps if your dog didn't jump on the child that looked like he wanted to play (but was really screaming bloody murder because of his serious fear of dogs), it wouldn't be a problem.

Let's hope the city's dog haters out there don't start petitioning to CLOSE your off leash areas since you're not using them anyway.

You know one thing I hate worse than asshats who hate, harm or profit from animals? Asshats who love them so much their common sense is clouded so much that they endanger their dog, other animals or other people.


GoLightly said...

"Standing Ovation...."
"more applause.."

Great post, plain & true as the considerable nose on my face.
Plain to see, if you can See it.
Why are there sighted people who can't see??
Wild and free. Yeah, we domesticated them just so we could watch them go wild again..

Unknown said...

I agree. Don't let your love cloud common sense compromising the safety and respect of others.


Thoughts said...

Good post, people can be so inconsiderate of others. Many a times I have had my dogs ON leash taking a walk and little kids and other people ahve crossed the street to avoid us since they fear or dont like dogs. Its just rude and bad manners to not recognize others' feelings about this. And dont even get me started on the people whose out-of-control dogs cause a ruckus at the dog park...


Anonymous said...

We have an off-leash section in the park next door, with some basic agility equipment, but the rest of the park is on-leash. Partly becasue we have a 'native fauna' section with a number of breeding birds and mammals in it, partly because it's next to a freeway and partly because across the freeway is an airport. We don't reallyw ant to have dogs running across the freeway and under planes.

However, very few people follow the rules. We get dozens of dogs wandering through our garden when they leave the park (one regular dalmation in particular) which is blatently disrespectful of other people and their property. As much as I love dogs, having strange dogs in my yard (we're 100m from the road) is unacceptable.

OldMorgans said...

That is a lawsuit waiting to happen. If I lived in Seattle w/a dog, I'd have to move. I would not want to be taking my dog out w/other out of control dogs.

DogsDeserveFreedom said...

Thanks all for commenting. I sometimes wonder if I'm too cynical ...

Rebecca said...

"Perhaps if the possibility of the next guy coming along weren't walking his severely Dog Agressive dog (note he's in an ON leash area with his dog on a leash where he though it would be safe), it wouldn't be a problem (let's hope you don't ever have to make that emergency vet visit!)."

Seconded, thirded, fourth.. ded?

I know you think everyone and everything loves your sweet golden retriever, but eventually he is going to bound up into the face of the wrong dog. Doesn't help that most off-leash dogs are just doggy rudeness personified.

Then the owner of the dog-aggressive dog is going to be the one getting yelled at, always. *Sigh*

DogsDeserveFreedom said...

Thank you Rebecca for pointing this out! That happens all too often.

True, the person with the Dog Aggressive dog really should be working the dog through the problems, but sometimes it takes time and if an overly exuberant dog comes along, you may lose weeks worth of training.