Why it’s important for dogs to be on leads in public places

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I was pleased to read your article and open poll in Tuesday’s news regarding dogs being kept on leads in public places.

It is an issue which needs to be discussed.

As a runner I look for traffic free routes to do my quicker sessions which includes going to parks and similar public places.

On my last training visit to Backhouse Park I had to abandon my session due to the amount of out of control dogs there were running free around the park.

As I was in the middle of running I was chased, barked and snapped at by three separate dogs all of which were un-leashed and loose.

I am a dog owner myself so I understand how important it is for their exercise, but my major bugbear is dogs being allowed to run up to people.

If the owners have any doubt regarding their ability to control their dog then they should have it on a lead.

A point I raised to an owner of two husky type animals barking and heading my way.

He did not appreciate my concerns dismissing my point with his words of “its a free world and you should not be out running”.

So many times I have been stopped mid run by a forward bounding, teeth showing, growling dog, to be told by its irresponsible owner that “its okay, he’s only playing”.

Forgive me, but as I’m out running I don’t want to play!

There are times I take my son out for a jog, what if one of these dogs fancy playing and take a nip at my boy’s leg?

Its a very serious issue which I feel needs addressing before someone is hurt.

Michael Barker