I can’t stress this enough. And I can’t stand anymore unleashed dog incidents. It’s frustrating, annoying, and I’m losing patience towards people who don’t follow a city’s by-laws. It makes the people who do follow them a heck of a lot harder to navigate through the city safely with their dogs.
There have been multiple times where unleashed dogs of all sizes have ran towards my dog. As a first-time dog owner and greyhound-owner, those situations can be terrifying. And I hope people can empathize with me on this. *Note: I am discussing unleashed dogs in non-off-leash areas (public parks, sidewalks, etc.). Off-leash dog parks and other dog-friendly facilities of the like are exceptions!
Greyhounds (specifically retired racers) aren’t like most dogs. They’ve never seen another breed of dog before other than greyhounds. They’ve never seen a city or a suburb or what you may consider “home” before. So when a dog, no matter what size or shape comes running at you, it’s scary for both owner and dog. I’m absolutely lucky and grateful that nothing has happened to me or my dog, and that Toby isn’t a fearful dog to other dogs and he is such a friendly boy. Otherwise, past incidents wouldn’t be minor encounters.
What irks me most is that there will always be that bias towards large breed dogs or “aggressive” or “scary” looking dogs. Like the ban on pitbulls in Montreal for example. People who clearly don’t do enough research are passing laws on innocent creatures. It is never the breed’s fault. It is the fault of the bad owners.
So when a small dog runs towards me and my dog, I will treat it the same as any other dog. I don’t know the history, behaviour, personality, or strength of a dog. But I will always be concerned about the safety and well-being of my dog. It gets on my nerves so much when dog owners think that their dogs are perfect angels and won’t hurt anyone or say that their dog is just “being friendly”.
Why you should leash your dog:
- Safety for your dog.
- If your dog runs up to an aggressive dog, you can probably bet a dog fight will happen. If unleashed, your dog can easily run into the street, get hit by a car, etc.
- Safety for other dogs.
- Your unleashed dog can be the dangerous one and hurt the other dog. Don’t always assume your dog is being “friendly”. Dog behaviour is very different from people, so your interpretation of “friendly” can mean something different to a dog. Always err on the side of caution.
- Safety for people.
- There are people out there who are afraid of dogs. There are dogs out there who are aggressive towards people. Keep your human community members safe.
- Avoiding fines.
- If your unleashed dog is caught, then you can be fined a hefty amount. Even heftier if you don’t have your animal licensed with the city.
- Making an overall safer community.
- Keeping dogs leashed in leashed areas isn’t hard to do. It gives you control of your dog and keeps everyone safe and mitigates any risk of a fight or injury.
I hope that people take this message seriously and empathize with other dog owners. The irresponsible actions of one owner can lead to a ripple effect on many members of the community.
Please… please. Leash your dogs.
Until the next post,