Feb 01 2011

Responsibilty of Dog Owners and Walkers

Published by at 12:02 pm under Dogs,Waterfront Planning

Todd Perlman at The Albany Patch writes:

“Dog Owners, Walkers Must Take Charge to Make Parks Safe.
Regardless of whether Albany adopts new rules for the Bulb, the onus is on canine lovers to promote appropriate practices.

Passion is abundant on both sides of a complex issue that boils down to this: Dog owners want the space to remain an off-leash romping ground, while non-dog owners would like to protect the Bulb from over-exuberant canines and owners who cannot be trusted.

Officials say much of the rationale behind the new policy relates to plans to hand over the Albany Bulb to state park control. The proposed policy would bring the area in line with state regulations, which officials say they hope would make the transition easier in the long run.

Ultimately, responsibility lies squarely with dog owners and professional walkers to follow safe and appropriate practices…….”

Read the full article by Todd Perlman at the   AbanyPatch

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One response so far

One Response to “Responsibilty of Dog Owners and Walkers”

  1. Mary Barnsdaleon 01 Feb 2011 at 6:03 pm

    Todd, I agree completely about responsibility. I have no argument with that, or with keeping dogs out of the mudflats and on-leash in the parking lot.

    But the argument that bringing the Bulb policies in-line with State park polices to make the transition easier is completely bogus. The agreement is to turn the Bulb over to the State by 2053 or earlier. (Albany has already tried to hand the Bulb off to the State — which wouldn’t take it.) Before the State will take the Bulb, Albany has to deal with the rebar, the homeless, the “unauthorized public art” and the dogs.

    None of that is happening anytime soon. To make the Bulb off-limits to the 39 percent of us who own dogs (according to the Humane Society of the United States) for the next 40 years so that the Bulb is in-line with State regs is crazy. It’s just a rationale.

    As to protecting the Bulb from over-exuberant canines… please remember that we’re talking about mostly unimproved landfill here, replete with rebar, broken concrete, mercury and lead. This is not pristine wilderness. The dogs do a lot less damage to the Bulb than cattle do to Tilden Park.

    There are easy ways that the dog management policy could compromise and please most parties pretty well. As far as I can see, no outreach to the dog-owning community was made and their wants, needs and even rights are not reflected in the document being developed by the Waterfront Committee.

    Yes, rights. The traditional thinking is that park set-asides should be picnic areas, sports fields, swimming areas, sailing, windsurfing, horseback-riding, fishing. None of those do a thing for many dog-owners. They live in this high-priced area where they work hard and have little free time. What they do have, they’d like to spend outside romping with their dog. Is that so bad? Seems to me it’s a pretty benign activity that should be encouraged. It’s something that a very big portion of the constituency wants.

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