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The Sun letter to the editor: Loose dogs are dangerous to walkers

Editor:

My husband and I have lived in the village for many years and walk or run with our dogs almost daily. In the 17 years we’ve been doing this, one thing has remained constant, loose dogs charge out at us unexpectedly. We learned many years ago to walk in the street to give us a little more time to react, should a dog charge at us. My question is, why does anyone let their dog out loose? Ever?

If I had a dollar for every time an owner has shouted, “Don’t worry he/she is friendly,” while their “friendly” canine is charging at us growling and barking, I would be rich! We have large dogs and when another dog is charging at them, it is only natural for them to react to protect themselves. I have been knocked down, bruised, scratched, stepped on and nearly run over during these confrontations, all thanks to irresponsible dog owners. We have repeatedly changed our routes because of these offenders, only to come across new ones. Your loose dog will run out at another dog going by his territory and he/she will not listen to you when you call them! I have witnessed it, over and over again. It doesn’t matter what breed or what size they are. A charging dog is deemed a threat by my dogs.

Once while running, my husband was chased by a very large dog who was charging at him aggressively. My husband kicked the dog to keep it from attacking our dog. The owner came out yelling and screaming at my husband because he kicked at his loose dog to protect our leashed one. After the owner cursed at my husband and threatened him, the dog (who was then being held by his collar) again proceeded to charge at my dog and knock his owner to the ground. Oh yeah, he’s friendly!

Just yesterday, we had another miserable experience. While walking down Union Street, a dog wearing a pinch collar came charging out at us, no owner in sight. He/she was aggressively trying to get to our dogs and we were screaming and yelling at him to go away. He persisted and both my husband and I were nearly bitten by him/her and were injured trying to protect our dogs. This attacking dog repeatedly jumped on their backs and bit at them. Finally, after what seemed an eternity, a woman came wandering (not rushing mind you, but leisurely strolling across the lawn) with a leash in her hand, to retrieve the dog. She claimed it wasn’t hers but was only dog-sitting. Unbelievably, she didn’t even apologize! Not her dog, not her problem! For the first time ever, I called the police to report it. Maybe I should have done this years ago. Please, people, please keep your dog behind a fence or on a chain that does not reach the sidewalk (people with invisible fence take note) every time!

I love dogs and I hate having to scream and kick at them, but I will, to protect my own. There really are no bad dogs, but there seems to be an abundance of bad dog owners in the village of Hamburg!

Kathy Klemenich
Hamburg
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2014-08-15 | 01:07:46
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