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My first argument at the dog park!

January 17th, 2007, 03:58 PM
I knew this day would come soon or later, me setting someone straight about their dog. So here's the story:

I'm at the park with my 6 m/o, Moxy. An older woman with her two larger white dogs was nice enough to bring a Chuck-it to the park with her to use with her dogs. Trouble trouble trouble!!! There are about 5 or 6 dogs around this woman, her 2 dogs, my dog, an older couples dog and one more. She's throwing the ball for her dog to get and my dog starts running with it, just because she likes chasing, not because she wanted the ball. They come back to the woman and the dog drops the ball, Moxy started sniffing and her dog snarled and scared Moxy and then bit her on the rump. The woman started yelling at her dog, THEN SHE HIT HER DOG WITH THE CHUCK-IT!!! Not too hard but I'm sure the dog felt it. The older couple walked over and politely told her that there is a rule about bringing toys and she shouldn't because it causes dogs to become aggressive. Well she wasn't hearing that, she went on a tirade about how her dog was only being like that because the other dogs were going for the ball (go figure!) and that it's the Dog Owners Associations rules and she will continue to bring her toys until the City of London tells her otherwise.

I didn't say anything at that point, the older couple walked away, there was a few more words exchanged, nothing too rude. Then something else prompted this woman to yell at this couple again, not sure what it was. At this point I was fuming, during this time she had hit her dog again with the Chuck-it so I said something. I can't even remember what I said because I was blinded by rage. It was something to the effect of "you shouldn't be hitting your dog with it's toy, if you need to correct it you should be using verbal commands", I rambled on for a few seconds at this woman, I was so pissed off.

I got Moxy and headed back to my car, I grabbed my cell phone and I phoned the number on the Rules Board and lodged a complaint. Lucky for me I was able to give them the womans licence plate because it just so happened that she had an English accent and the car parked beside me had a Great Britain bumper sticker! My lucky day I suppose, so she will be tracked down hopefully and get set straight about the rules.

I'm still a little shaky, I don't do confrontations too well but I couldn't stop myself from blurting out about the abuse she was dishing to her dog. It only takes one person to ruin a trip to the dog park, poor Moxy didn't even get to run around and play with the other dogs.

January 17th, 2007, 04:04 PM
Oh, yeah, I've had a few of those... People don't understand that it's not their backyard.

Great that you stood up for the dog.:) :highfive:

January 17th, 2007, 04:09 PM
Woo hoo Amie. You should have let her have it about her dog nipping moxy on the rear end though. Hopeflully her dog has had all of it's shots.

January 17th, 2007, 04:14 PM
I would have said something if her dog had really gotten a chuck of Moxy's tush. I don't mind letting her sort things out herself sometimes but this dog might have torn a chunk out of her if she persisted and this whole thing didn't happen.

I'm growing my backbone through the dog park and working my way up! ;)

January 17th, 2007, 04:15 PM
Yeah, the dog park is black and white for me that way too. I want my dog and all the dogs there safe, and if you can't handle that, watch out! :D (even if I'm more passive with other things..)

January 17th, 2007, 04:26 PM
I'm thinking about writing an editorial to the paper about this. People don't read the rules when they go to the park. I ran into a couple bringing their 4 week old puppy into the park, for one why is it not with it's mother still and two why is it there? It clearly doesn't have all of its shots and it's even too small to be in the small dog corner.

London has a few dumb dog owners, a little education will go along way with these them.

January 17th, 2007, 05:45 PM
Kudos to you for standing up to that woman. :highfive: I hope you go ahead with your plan of writing an editorial to the newspaper. Good luck. :fingerscr

January 17th, 2007, 09:33 PM
I live in Ottawa and I really get tired of people treating there dogs like garbage in lew of a nice word at the dog park it takes great courage to stand up to stupid pet owners you never know what will happen. I sat YEA!!!!!!!! for you to bad there weren't more people like that. Write this women up.

January 17th, 2007, 09:55 PM
dog parks... pffft. add some beer and you got yourself a bar-fight! come to think of it, in the hot summertime, many people DO bring alcohol to the dog park. and bring their little pre-school kids and let them run loose with alll the crazy dogs... some are bitches in heat... many dogs are socially atrophied and inept... we once had a guy bring a CAT on a leash there... never boring at the dooooog park :laughing:

January 17th, 2007, 10:05 PM
TD that's outrageous, a cat!? They must not like their cat, giving it a death wish or something.

If I see someone with beer at this dog park I'll pipe up again. Come to think of it, I'm going to put the city phone number in my phone book on my cell phone.

I'm trying to write my editorial to the paper but I'm waiting for some info so I have my facts right before I write my rant.

Now that I think of it, I get pretty worked up every time I go to the dog park. After joining this board and learning a lot about dog behaviour and then bringing my dog to the park and observing other people with their dogs, I see so many faults. So many people yelling at their dogs when their dogs are play fighting and they see it as fighting. Their dogs start to hump other dogs and they freak out. The list goes on!!!

IMO I think that there should be pamphlets handed out to better inform people of what they can expect when their dogs interact with each other, so they don't freak out.

January 18th, 2007, 12:22 AM
LOL funny you mentioned cat at dog park cos from the avatar i thought Aimster brought the cat to the park. I thought "oh no! i wonder how it went arguing that there should be no discrimination about species at the dog park" :laughing:

January 19th, 2007, 05:03 AM
I say "AWSOME for you Aimster!!!!!"
I got so worked up once I was screaming at some guy down the street. I've yelled out car windows, honked my horn. Ya I can get a bit looney but somebody has to stand up for these poor babies. People think nothing of saying something if it was a kid. Good for you Aimster. We need more people like you!!!!:thumbs up

January 19th, 2007, 04:41 PM
Dare I ask what a Moxy is? Or short for?

That woman does sound awful and if you have access to a newspaper and can write an editorial, good for you! I am on an editorial board so I often write editorials about animal issues - even if there are the occasional letters to the editor from ppl who are not so keen on pet issues. That is their problem, lol

I am not a fan of dog parks - and God forbid, I;d never bring my cats to one! I can't believe anyone did that - not that I don't believe you, just that I use it as a figure of speech. Like OMG!! Are they crazy, lol

I could not even tell you where the dog parks are here - if we have any. Dogs are allowed in most parks anyway and I have noticed even the largest park (Point Pleasant) allows unleashed dogs and there are few problems. At least, I have never heard of any.

Good luck!! I do have to ask - thinking out loud here because I am unfamiliar with dog parks (and we have had dogs but always had lots of property and there were always other dogs at other parks that they could play with and the owners were friendly and good with their pets). - I can understand now thinking about It why toys would not be allowed. What else can one do - without a toy if one cannot bring a toy? Play with other dogs? Walk? Run? Do they have some parks near water do dogs who like water on hot days can get some running in and out of the water? (Thinking of my choc lab nephew here, you know how labs love the water!)

Are there no supervisors or people are on their merits? It seems to me at least in the summer - when I assume it would be peak capacity that would be a great job for a student. Similar to kids who work at so called regular parks now. They could clean up after those *(&^ people who make all of us look bad when thy don't pick up after their pooches. (I always carry bags with me when I walk the lab or lassa apso in my family).

And people do sometimes bring balls to regular parks with their dogs.

January 19th, 2007, 11:29 PM
CyberKitten, Moxy is my 6 m/o Lab/Border Collie. And I did write an editorial and I'm waiting to see if it gets printed in the next week. Hopefully it does!!

To answer your question, here in London these off-leash parks are enclosed by fencing, there is a lot of area for the dogs to walk around in with their owners and they are property of the city as far as I know. There isn't really a need for toys when there are a lot of dogs in the park, it keeps them pretty occupied if they find a dog to play with. There are trails inside of the park and there is also a paved bicycle path outside that stretches for quite a few kilometers across the city.
I think that city by-laws prohibit dogs from being off-leash anywhere but an off-leash park. The city also created the by-laws or posted rules as we know them, which is short but covers the main issues in order to keep the dogs and the humans safe.

I've emailed the head of the London Dog Owners Association and got a lot of info about it. They sometimes have monitors for the parks but that's very rare, if there happens to be a By-law enforcement officer there and they know the rules well and see a person with a toy, they may very well write them up a fine. I don't think that happens at all unfortunately. The idea of having students in the summer to monitor the park, even just during the peak hours would be a great idea, I might pass that along to the head of the Dog Owners Association.

January 19th, 2007, 11:51 PM
It sounds like dog parks would be a perfect place to educate people about not freaking out at their dog and hitting them with things. They should list that in the rules.

People think nothing of saying something if it was a kid.You'd think, unfortunately we need signs for that too and more loud people speaking up.

January 20th, 2007, 06:43 AM
"Official" dog parks are funny thngs aren't they? You meet such a wide swathe of dog owners and dog people, not to mention dogs.

One of my small dreams is that conflict resolution training will be mandatory for all school children and youth so that tomorrow's generation will learn "to use your words" ( as me Ma always said :) ).

Good for you Aimster :thumbs up . Dogparks need more people like you!

January 22nd, 2007, 12:31 PM
Good for you, that woman should not have been hitting her dog w/ its toy!

I can't believe someone would bring a cat to a dogpark. Were they trying to get it killed? At the park I go to, toys are allowed, though. I've not seen too many issues around the toys, except after they get chewed up enough, i can see some of them being hazardous if pieces get injested. Usually someone spots that and pitches it, though.

This weekend, I was at the park w/ my dog Guinness. A dog bit him and I did not see which one or even when it happened. It was just a nip on the ear, no tearing, a small puncture at the tip. There was blood all over his head, though. He is black so I didn't notice it right away. Seems fine, but wish I knew which dog did it. Also, someone brought their small toddler in and he was running all over. What is up with some people? It is not safe in there for small children and there is a rule saying no children under 12!! ugh. I like having an outlet for my dog to wear off some energy, and socialize, but sometimes it is not a good experience.

January 22nd, 2007, 12:41 PM
the guy who brought his cat to the dog park was not "right in the head", he's known around the neighborhood to be an alcoholic in and out of rehab with mental problems, to boot.... rumors of pedophile stuff too :footinmouth: i haven't seen him around in 2 years though. he used to have this cutest little froo-froo dog that he kicked around :sad: and often just left in the dog park for hours while he disappeared... the poor little one would stand at the gate and just wait to be brought home. a bunch of folks were plotting to kidnap him and bring him to a good home, i wonder if that ever happened. it saddens me to see so many sick people lost in this world, but when they take their sickness as an excuse to abuse an animal... that just infuriates me :mad:

January 22nd, 2007, 01:23 PM
Hope doggy and kitty are in better hands now. I don't think people learn until they are ready.:sad: If someone is abusing an inocent animal or child I don't think there should be any hesitation to intervene. I don't know what I would have done though if I had seen a cat at a dog park. :mad: I mean how do you get through to someone so "out of it"?

January 23rd, 2007, 05:14 PM
My letter to the editor got printed, a little altered from the original but at least it got in there!!

Take a read!!

The same woman that prompted me write this article started another argument yesterday in the park because she brought that damn toy back.

I was at the park today and I was speaking with a woman and she told me about this argument and mentioned that she read an article in the paper about something similar (my article, so exactly the same) I told her that I wrote it and we talked about it a bit. Someone needs to be monitoring these parks. This woman obviously doesn't care, I hope that she has been contacted about her behaviour.

January 23rd, 2007, 05:27 PM
Well done for getting an article published !

But tell me, who should "police" the dog parks ? Do we really want more government involvement than there is already ? Perhaps you might speak with other dog people in the park and agree if a toy comes into the park, you will scoop it up and keep it, then collectively speak to the owner ( when they come over to ask why you've taken the toy).

January 23rd, 2007, 05:47 PM
I definitely don't want the government involved. I simply think that volunteers or as suggested earlier, students looking for summer work could do it. Members of the London Dog Owners Association may want to do it.

It doesn't even have to be all of the time, during peak hours when there is the largest number of dogs in the park would be good.

The city also needs to post the rules other than on a piece of paper stapled to the post. It needs to be in bold on the actual signs then maybe people will notice it if they haven't before.

January 23rd, 2007, 06:26 PM
How about a "Welcome " group of dogpeople?

This is your park ~ not the students (who would be hired by Parks and Rec ~ in other words the Government) and not the London Dog Owners Association.

You obviously feel some ownership of the park and it's safety. As you know, with ownership comes responsibility. Who, if not you and the other dogpeople who use the park, should step up ?

January 23rd, 2007, 09:46 PM
I would be fine with the city hiring people, it's their property, their bylaws that we have to live by when we're in the park. If they also feel it's a recurring problem than they can step in. They don't need armed officers or something outrageous like that. They work in co-operation with the dog owners association, I'm sure that something could be settled upon.

I don't feel like an owner of the park, I'm simply a patron of the park. I don't want to ruin my visit everytime I go to the park because I have to confront another owner. Almost every visit somone brings a ball or another toy. I'm there to enjoy my visit and I'm not the type to just walk up to someone and tell them to get rid of their toy. That woman provoked this argument by hitting her dog that's the only reason I spoke up. I'm sure that most other dog owners won't speak up either unless there is a situation and would rather a third party enforce the rules. That's just my opinion, I could be wrong.