Dog fight over public park use

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Updated: 10/12/2012 2:08 pm
RENO, Nev. (KRNV & - There's a dog fight of sorts tonight over a public park where one mom says something illegal is going on and it’s dangerous to kids. Dogs at Plumas Park are often being let off their leash despite the fact signs are posted saying that illegal considering it’s not an official dog park.

“I would hope the law would be enforced, that's all I’m asking. If I get caught speeding on the freeway  get a ticket. There's nothing different,” Valerie Olivas said.

Her 7-year-old son was bitten by one of the loose dogs so hard it ripped through his clothes and left a mark lasting a week later.

“It could be traumatic absolutely. A child could get bitten and the dog could not stop and by the time the dog owner or parent gets to the child, it could be deadly,” Olivas said.

However most pet people say they're responsible about only letting well behaved animals loose, and someone getting bitten is rare.

“Maybe a kernel of truth that's getting blown out of proportion. But for the most part, the people in this neighborhood we really need this park for our dogs. For a lot of us our dogs are like our kids,” dog owner Heather Lee said.

Animal control has started warning people and is about to set up a zero tolerance policy where owners could face up to a $400 fine for letting loose dogs. But County Commissioner Kitty Jung believes there may be another option where everyone's happy.

“There's always a solution when there is a problem. But first and foremost we have to educate the public this is not allowed here,” she said.

One possible solution being talked about is letting the kids have this side, putting a barrier right here down the middle and turning that part down there into a fenced off dog park.

“When you're in an off leash park, it's generally fenced in - especially when it's multi-use. So that would protect the public and this is a huge dog loving community,” Jung said.

It's an idea both sides seem willing to play around with, and if an agreement could be reached, it might take the bite out of this dog fight.
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FoolontheHill - 10/12/2012 3:03 PM
1 Vote
As a dog owner and lover I agree with everything you say except your implication that you can reason with kids. Parents who bring kids to dog parks should teach, and enforce, their kids not to run around dogs. Seems even parents with dogs can't do that.

margiegoaway - 10/12/2012 8:09 AM
1 Vote
I now have Animal Control on speed dial also. Last night when I was walking by the soccer games I noticed at least one dog belonging to a soccer mom that was off leash. So the soccer moms need to FOLLOW THE RULES also! By the way, tell your child to stop digging such deep holes in the park that someone will get hurt. Or are you too busy watching for dogs to watch your child?

margiego - 10/11/2012 11:18 PM
0 Votes
I have Animial Control on speed dial on my cell phone because of the amount of dogs allowed to run free at that park. My sons use to have soccer practice in that park and every time were chased by dogs wanting to get the balls and the owners thought it was "cute". And on Saturday mornings when they had their games, we were always cleaning up after some "responsible" pet owner who didn't pick up after their "kid". We cannot wait until someone gets seriously hurt - just the fact that a child was bitten by a dog there should have shut it down immediately. I have seen a dog attack and kill another dog, even though the owners said they were so nice and wouldn't harm a flea. A dog is a dog is a dog - they are not kids, they cannot be reasoned with. If you are a responsible dog owner, you know that they are ANIMALS, with ANIMAL INSTINCTS, no mater how domesticated you think you have made them. The city is acting irresponsibly and needs to step up enforcement of the rules until the rules are changed. AND the dog owners need to FOLLOW THE RULES!

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