Thursday, January 21, 2010

Off Leash Wars

There's an in-depth article in SF Weekly covering the battle over off-leash "rights" in San Francisco.

Dogs should have off-leash time, safely.

People should be able to walk without fear of being jumped on or even touched nicely by loose dogs.

I've seen the following scene repeated way too many times. It's embarrassing for all of us who love dogs, want them to have safe off leash time, but who also respect the fears and concerns of other people to read these incidents:
Not all live with it happily. As Troup walked across a grassy hillside, a pair of small, off-leash dogs rushed up to the leashed Chino, causing him to startle and yank his owner off-balance. The dogs' master, a tall man in plaid shorts, glared at Troup through a pair of shades, a cigarette dangling from his lips.
"This is actually an on-leash area up here," Troup said.
"I'm aware of that," the man replied. "Fuck you."


Kari in WeHo said...

no matter what laws are in place, there will also be dumb people who allow dogs off leash that shouldn't be

themacinator said...

i actually yelled at someone the other day- normally i just grit my teeth and cross the street. i was running with mac. i always take care to pick neighborhoods with wide streets and low traffic, but i live in an urban environment. there was a pointer on a corner looking lost. i was running and running and no one came (ok, i run slowly, evne jogging is a stretch!). finally, a woman came and "released" the dog, who ran all the way down the block, then waited at the corner. when the woman caught up- she walked slower than i jog- she released him again and he took off running down the next block. by this point, i had turned, run down one block and back down the other side back towards her (and not her dog who was down a different block. i told her she needed a leash. she looked confused and said the usual "he's fine." I said my dog isn't, and that there are parks for exercizing your dog. she huffed away.

this kind of nonsense bothers me. on the same block that i had evacuated with mac, two very elderly ladies were walking, one with a walker. why on earth should any of us have to deal with an offleash sprinting pointer with no owner in sight? there *are* dog parks, and there *are* ways to exercize dogs on-leash. if it is impossible to get your dog the workout he needs without taking him to an appropriate, legal place and letting him run, then you have the wrong dog in the wrong place.

i used to be the nice officer- now i'm the officer who issues tickets for dogs offleash in parks. really. and the bitch who tells people to put their dogs on leash when they're out with their (well behaved) dog on a leash.

(end rant)

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Pibble said...

Ditto Kari's response.

It's a great idea to have leashed and off-leash areas for people and their dogs to enjoy. But people don't follow the rules and stay in their designated areas, so they ruin it for those who do. Then, when the owner clearly ignores the rules and a person or dog gets hurt, it's the Pit Bull's fault. Sorry, I had to get that part in.