Elizabeth Taylor, Bellingen
Thank you for the article by Melanie Lotfali, (Comments, July 31), concerning dog owners. It is timely.
I am a dog lover, have owned dogs myself, and appreciate that they make a great contribution to the lives of many people. But Ms Lotfali’s experience is becoming increasingly common.
Dog owners who normally pass as friendly and reasonable people seem to go into a bizarre and irrational zone when perfectly legitimate claims are made against their dogs’ behaviour. This seems to happen especially, as in the event described, when those owners are not actually present for the critical event.
Another type of encounter is dogs behaving badly in their owners’ backyards. Even when the owners appear to be home, dogs are often left to bark, whine, and howl unchecked for prolonged periods. And the most benign complaint about such behaviour in the owner’s absence is treated with scepticism, often hostility. As if we sit at home making this stuff up!
Dogs are in plague proportions in many of our towns now, and even unavoidable, it would seem, on tranquil beach walks. I believe we need much stricter policing of antisocial dog behaviour and steep penalties for the negligent owners involved.