“Your dog needs to be leashed. This is not an off-leash area. Please leash your dog.”
Recent responses to this civil request:
* S/he’s OK.
* S/he wouldn’t hurt anybody.
* It’s Easter. We’re giving her/him a break.
* You’re probably Republicans.
* Zero. (The ear buds cancel communication.)
But, communication is what we must have. The issue of irresponsible dog ownership in our community is real.
How do I know?
Let me walk you through Thursday morning, May 17, 2012.
It’s 11:45 am. My husband and I are on our back porch, rummaging through household paperwork. We notice a major scuff-up in our back yard: our property, our home. Dust, dirt and fur are flying. A neighbor’s dog is off-leash…again. (There have been mounting complaints over the years from multiple neighbors. This was a dog bred to hunt.) We thought it had trespassed–once again–and that it found the unfortunate pocket gopher that has been happily aerating our rear slope this past spring.
The dog had our innocent domestic cat, Lily, in its jaws.
We separated the animals and sped to our vet. Lily has survived, thanks to expert care from our vet and our fortunate presence at that very moment. A few extra seconds of maceration and Lily would have been history. We reported the incident immediately to our police department and we thank our University Place Public Safety Officers Travis Lyons and Nels Asplund for their intervention. Their supervisor, Jennifer Hales, runs an expert unit. You all have our gratitude.
Lily is still with us, healing more and more with each day.
The dog is not.
We find no favor with this, and grieve the loss of any life.
But, pet ownership carries responsibilities–and consequences.
Follow the law. Leash your dog. Please.
I will remind you. Anywhere. Any time. On Lily’s behalf.