LETTER: Parksville’s parks no place for off-leash dogs

There is an issue in this town that so angers and upsets me that I feel compelled to write.

I love dogs. I do not, however, like being approached by loose dogs with gnarled teeth and threatening growling. Or even gentle dogs I don’t know. As someone who loves to walk in Springwood Park and other park trails, I am disgusted by the multitude of owners who completely disregard all “Pets must be Leashed” signs.

When a threatening dog approaches me, the dog owner always says “Oh, s/he’s friendly.” Well, maybe it is friendly to its owners but not necessarily to strangers! I know people who have been attacked and bitten by “friendly” dogs. It is inconsiderate and unnecessary to disobey pet bylaws and let your dog free there.

I have complained to the city bylaw office and they agreed tickets need to be given out, but I wonder if they have actually done anything about it. It doesn’t seem so. Pets still remain free in Springwood and I’ve never seen an officer there, although assured there would be.

Side note: There is a doggy free-run park beside the Springwood Trail system: if the pets need to “‘burn off energy, ” as one woman said, take them there, not in a walkers’ area.

I am only talking about City of Parksville parks and I am indeed angry about this disregard for people who are nervous of unknown dogs, either validly or not.

Raquel Michaelis

Parksville

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