Canine common courtesy

Common courtesy and doggie etiquette protects owners and their neighbors


Signs like this occur in many places, posted by people tired of ill-mannered dog owners and their dogs. The disrespect for other people and their property has resulted in banning dogs altogether in some places that could have been enjoyed by all.

Banning because of irresponsible owners punishes everyone who owns a pet. Altercations because of the actions of a pet has in the past resulted in loss of human life in the most aggravated of circumstances.

So. . . .

Times have changed in recent years as dog populations have risen. It seems to be a rite-of-passage to move to rural or suburban America and allow the dog to run loose, unsupervised. Leash laws and dog-at-large restrictions were designed to prohibit these kinds of nuisances. Dogs running the neighborhood can cause dissension among the neighbors, and the dog often pays the toll. Loose dogs can be shot, poisoned, hit by a car, or stolen.

On the other hand, neighbors should not have their shrubs and lawns destroyed by urinating and defecating dogs, and their children, pets, and livestock should not face harassment or death from unconfined dogs. The actions of irresponsible dog owners hit every taxpayer in the pocketbook as our tax dollars go to pay for shelters for the unwanted dogs and puppies produced by the traveling canine salesman. Euthanasia is the fate of about two million dogs each year, many from accidental breedings by the neighbor's loose dog.

Dog ownership is a privilege and a responsibility. Dog owners should respect their neighbors if they want due respect in return.

Melody Greba

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