Letters: Not all dogs are friendly

Unleashed dogs are unwelcome in public areas in Sooke

Today, my leashed dog was once again attacked while out for our walk by a “friendly dog.” I cannot count the times my dog has been charged/bit/aggressively confronted by an unleashed dog as its owner calls from far ahead on the path, ‘He’s friendly!’

I can only assume you do not understand dog behaviour and hope you are not knowingly imposing your dog’s rude behaviour upon my dog, and the other canines your dog encounters. Running full speed toward another dog is not friendly behaviour in dog speak. Neither are baring teeth, circling, raising hackles, growling or biting. Please, do us all a favour as your dog bolts ahead toward another dog and yell the more honest and accurate call of, “I take no responsibility for what my dog is doing!”

Dogs are leashed for a variety of reasons, none of which the owner needs to justify but which can include illness or injury, training, fear, poor recall, walking an unfamiliar dog, or merely the owner’s desire to enjoy the company of their dog on leash.

Most parks that allow dogs state that dogs in the park must “be under direct control” – this means every dog should either be leashed or have immediate recall and will return to owner without hesitation.

Whiffin Spit, Erinan/Kemp Lake and the Goose have all become dreaded locations for walking leashed dogs forcing many to take their companion to farther and more remote locations.

I am tired of yelling out to the “he’s friendly” the response of “Mine’s not!” in the hopes the owner calls off their dog. Everyone of us and our furry buddies have a right to take our walks in public locations without being confronted aggressively.

Please rethink your dog’s behaviour next time you feel compelled to call the war cry of the irresponsible and naïve dog owner…because your dog may not really be that friendly.

Jacqueline

Kennedy

Sooke