Letter — Residents should follow pet laws
I was wondering if it might be possible to put up some signs reminding people that it is against the law (Town of Trumbull Municipal Code Sec. 15-9(a)) to not have your dog on a leash in any of our town parks (excluding the fenced dog runs obviously). Also that all dog owners are required by law (TMC Sec 15-9(b)) to clean up their pets feces.
I would also greatly appreciate if police officers and park rangers could make a concerted effort to remind people of the local laws. The lack of enforcement on this issue has led to a common disregard for these town laws.
There are many reasons to encourage people to keep their dogs on a leash, above and beyond the fact that it is the law. A strong one to consider is that It is disrespectful towards people who may not like, or feel comfortable, around dogs. While I myself am not in this camp, it is important to remember that not all of our town residents are dog lovers, but they have every right to enjoy our parks and not feel terrorized by someone's labrador. (No particular bias meant towards labradors, it just had a nice ring).
Telling someone that "It's ok he's friendly" does not in fact make anything OK. If you are not in control of your animal, then you are not only violating the law, but you are also not being a good neighbor.
By allowing their dog to run free they are also placing their their dogs in jeopardy of contracting diseases that are carried in the feces and carcasses of wild animals. Some of the parasites carried by coyotes and other animals can kill a domesticated dog and spread to other animals, and while unlikely, even humans, in a household.
Conversely, when owners don't clean up after their dogs, they place wild animals at risk of contracting diseases that they have no natural defense for.
My last point, it is incredibly frustrating to those of us who are dog owners, especially those of us with rescue animals, who while fine around people, do not necessarily "play well with others" when it comes to dogs. I pay my taxes, but I do not feel comfortable walking my own dog in a park due to the people, willfully and without recourse, ignoring these laws.
These laws are important in protecting the safety and wellbeing of all our neighbors, two-legged and four legged alike.