As a lifelong pet owner (with a veterinarian father in law) I have been astonished at the behavior of some local dog owners. Please understand that I write this letter as more of an appeal to pet owner civility, not as an unappointed pet owner judge.
I have witnessed inconsiderate and perhaps illegal behavior over the past month on the part of pet owners (without having to look very hard). They include:
• While watching a fly-fisherman working a stretch of the Truckee River, I witness the arrival of an unleashed dog (off the Legacy Trail) and watch the owner of the animal throw a fetch stick into the river, which the dog chases within 25 feet of the fisherman’s line, surely scaring away any fish.
• Truckee Music in the Park — there is an entry to the event sign that reads, NO DOGS ALLOWED. A middle-aged woman brings a leashed dog into the event. While setting up her chair, her dog pulls the leash out of her hand and the dog goes for a 3-year-old’s dinner (bringing him to tears and frustrating him), snatching the food from his hand. He cries and the startled parents ask her to please move her dog away — several music lovers in the area ask her to leave and she eventually does, but only after arguing and using profanity.
• Tuesday’s Farmers Market in Truckee also has a posted sign at the entry point, NO DOGS, due to county health ordinance requirements, etc. Several dog owners bring in to the market leashed dogs, ignoring the signs.
• My wife and I regularly ride our bikes (slowly most times) on the Legacy Trail and are met with no less than two or three unleashed dogs cutting in front of our bikes or attempting to greet our legs (while we are riding) with sniffs, licks or nibbles — all the while their owners telling us how nice and well-meaning their dogs are.
These are my unsolicited observations.