Sounds great doesn't it? Well it was great... until an irresponsible owner and her off leash dog appeared on the trail. We stepped aside with Isis and Phoebe, who were leashed as they always are. Of course the unleashed dog came running over to us. I asked the owner to please call her dog. Instead of calling her dog away, she replied "Oh he's friendly. Just keep walking, he won't follow you". She continued walking and yaking away on her cell phone. We continued on but he did follow us, and after about 15 feet I yelled "Call Your Dog!". She steadfastly refused to call her dog away and again told us to just keep walking. At that point her dog was way too close for my comfort. I stepped in front of Phoebe to block her and began yelling and waving my arms at the dog in an attempt to make him go away. My efforts were futile. The dog wouldn't leave and the inconsiderate owner still did nothing. We yelled that this is NOT an off leash trail and that her dog should be leashed. She then proceed to curse us out and then say "everyone loves my dog!". We couldn't believe she would make such a ridiculous, irrelevant statement.
|Signs like this appear around the park area. Excuse my crummy photograpy, the signs are actually very clear!|
Most parks in Long Island, New York do not allow dogs at all so when we find one that does it's pretty special. Long Islanders have had to work hard to gain access for dogs at any parks and beaches out here, so following the rules is especially important. If we don't, it will be all too easy for our dogs' access to be yanked away. The number one rule is always Clean Up After Your Dog, the number two rule is always Keep Your Dog ON LEASH in accordance with park regulations and local ordinance. Obviously, she had not intention of cleaning up after her dog either, she wasn't watching him at all. For the most part, only secure dog parks/runs and a couple of other areas permit off leash dogs on Long Island.
|I turned back to snap this photo of the offending owner, still gabbing on her cell phone like nothing happened, her off leash dog still unattended.|
What would you have done in this situation? What do you think I should do, if anything, with the photo we took of her with her offleash dog; should we share it with the Long Island Greenbelt Association? The local police? Can anything be done about people like her who ruin it for everyone else? If you have encountered this issue and have any advice to share, please post a comment, I'd appreciate hearing from you. Thanks for letting me rant today, friends.