Letters

LETTERS: Promenade not the place for pets

Users of the White Rock promenade along the waterfront should leave their dogs behind, say letter writers. - File photo
Users of the White Rock promenade along the waterfront should leave their dogs behind, say letter writers.
— image credit: File photo

Editor:

Re: Fair solution within reach, Aug. 5 letters.

Letter-writer Michael Klaven makes an impassioned plea to allow dogs on the promenade and beach area.

I get it that dog owners would love the opportunity to use these areas, but it just won’t work.

The promenade is used daily by young mothers with their children, joggers, seniors, tourists and others. Dogs and joggers, dogs and young kids running free, dogs and seniors with walkers… how well does all that mix?

I may be wrong, but I’m sure if the letter-writer used the promenade and beach regularly he might have a different opinion, even as a dog owner.

To allow dogs on the beach where they would be off-leash, running among hundreds of toddlers and young children? I don’t know when the current bylaw was adopted, but there was obviously a good reason for it, and to suggest this was the work of a couple hundred people is disingenuous or, maybe more accurate, just guesswork.

I might add the beach west of the pier is primarily used by paddle boarders and kayakers, not swimmers.

I agree it seems punitive that responsible dog owners get tarred with the same brush as those who disregard the rules, but it would be bad policy to risk serious injury to a child because some negligent owner can’t control his dog.

Barry Collins, White Rock

• • •

Support for and against the presence of leashed/unleashed dogs on White Rock beaches, has been evidenced by letters to the Peace Arch News of late.

Noted on the City of White Rock website, under the heading ‘parks,’ it says, “Dogs are not allowed on the promenade or City of White Rock beaches.”

It appears the bylaws are not enforced.

Recently, while walking on East Beach, I counted nine dogs running freely. This was not an unusual day.

On another occasion my family and I – with two small children – were attempting to quietly enjoy a picnic on the grass above East Beach, when a small dog ran onto our mat and sat himself down in the tray that contained our almost-finished fish-and-chip dinner. The owners smiled and shouted sorry from a distance.

When I go to the beach it is with a view to relax. Having an unknown dog come bounding up to where I am sitting – especially if I never saw it coming – spraying sand all over me, isn’t fun. It’s intrusive. Sorry.

And when the grandchildren are with me, I am even less relaxed if dogs are roaming freely. How am I to know if your dog is child-friendly or not?

People are people and dogs are dogs. Our beaches are a lot busier than they used to be, so allowances have to be made for that fact. Let people have their own space – most of it – and let the dogs have theirs.

Susan Kinnie, Surrey

• • •

I am an animal lover – always have been, raised with dogs, family has dogs, I had cats – just love them all. And I understand they are family, and not mere ‘pets.’

Having said that, I walk the promenade daily and must totally disagree with the notion that dogs should be allowed there. One can’t help but notice that there are families, tourists, people of all age groups, from babes in arms/strollers, to the frail and elderly.

Dogs would not enhance the White Rock experience whatsoever. In fact, their presence would only add to the congestion and possible unsanitary conditions.

Most have dogs on those retractable leashes, so dogs would be all over the place, criss-crossing the walkway, causing a hazard. Dogs poop and pee, and yes, most would pick up, but the remnants remain – not conducive to a nice day of picnicking or enjoying the scenery.

Dogs like to stop and sniff each other and every spot they can find. This would cause congestion, perhaps even cause unaware tourists taking in the sights to stumble, or the elderly to trip and fall – not good at all.

Children are drawn to animals and would love to stop and pet the dogs. More tieups. Dogs bark at each other, people, birds, whatever… More potential for problems.

Bottom line – the promenade should be for people only.

There are many nice streets to walk your dogs along and other areas where dogs are allowed. Let’s keep everyone safe, including our family dogs, and keep the promenade for people only.

Sandy Mechefske, White Rock

 

 

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