DOGS IN NATURAL PLACES
Let me be the first to say, I LOVE DOGS! I love em, I love em, I love em! An example of just how much I love them? I have been known to yell ‘PUPPY!’ out a car window when I see one, which from time to time has ended up in a couple of dogs almost jumping out of their car windows, but those are stories for other times, folks! At the moment I wish I could have a dog but the place I’m currently living in doesn’t let us have them so I’m SOL there… Anyways, on to the point!
To add to that sentiment, I love seeing dogs when I go on nature walks! They’re enjoying it (usually) just as much as we are! Yet, much of the time, you’ll find owners of said pups not following rules. (Yes, I’m looking at you, owner of the giant Great Dane puppy who knocked me down a few months ago. He should have been on a leash, not that I was really complaining; like I said, I love dogs! But I digress…) As much as leave no trace should be highly respected, following the rules for your pup should be as well.
Whenever you see a ‘no dogs allowed’ sign, you should really take heed. This is not intended to say that I don’t want to see your dog there, but there’s probably a decent reason that sign is where it is… which, and I REALLY hate to say this, means I don’t want to see your dog there. Whether we enjoy it or not, many times it’s to protect the area in which you are walking. I’ve seen many a pile of poo in an area where dogs aren’t allowed, and many a dog off-leash at that. Your dog’s poo can actually have an effect on the ecosystem and the growth of an area. Fight me on this all you want, but it is your responsibility a) to pick up after your pup and b) to follow the rules.
Now, don’t come to me saying, ‘well, where the hell am I supposed to walk my dog?’ You know darn well that there are MANY places where dogs are allowed. Trust me, I have found many sites online that tell you where a dog is allowed and if it’s okay to have them on or off leash.
The main point is this, folks:
If there are signs telling you not to have your dog there, please take heed.
If there are signs asking you to have them on leashes, please take heed.
If your dog is allowed to run free somewhere and be as wild as can be, can I please come along and play?
Have fun out there and be safe!