Man, did a letter in the Chronicle Herald get my "ire" up today. I almost ran to the computer after I'd finished my Kraft Dinner at supper tonight.
(Note added July 11th - it was published in today's paper - http://thechronicleherald.ca/Letters/846653.html
Here's the letter:
People vs. pets
Re: "County releases the hounds" (June 27). I was quite upset to learn that dogs have more rights in HRM than people according to city council.
We have a daughter with autism, who is very frightened of dogs. It prevents us from taking part in a lot of activities that others take for granted, like "a walk in the park." Believe me, it's no "walk in the park" when your daughter is screaming and running from a dog that is unleashed. It makes it hard for individuals who have a fear of dogs
to access city parks. Even in parks where "dogs on leash only" signs are posted, they are often ignored by pet owners. You are reassured that "he is friendly" or "he won't bite." This does not help people who have a real fear of dogs.
I hope others will call, e-mail or write their city council member, as I will be doing to discourage further parks "going to the dogs." Why are people's pets more important than people?
Pamela Drisdelle, Beaver Bank
And here is my response that I just emailed in:
Pets don't have more rights than people. Dog owners of the HRM simply want to enjoy the same rights as non dog owners and use the parks of the HRM. I am very sorry that some people are very afraid of dogs - but I have no control over other people's unrealistic fears - I am very afraid of crowds of teenagers - what is the HRM going to do about them? I won't go to the Halifax Common's or walk down Herring Cove Road after dark because of them. Perhaps I have an unrealistic fear though - maybe groups of teenage kids are just having conversations and spending time together. Just because some people have "a real fear of dogs" - doesn't mean that any dog they come upon is going to harm them. And just because some people have "a real fear of dogs" doesn't mean that dogs have to be kept out of parks in the HRM. And if they do - then the HRM is definitely NOT a place that I - or a lot of tax paying dog owners is going to continue to live in.