Find a safe way to share the dog park

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To the Editor:

On Monday, Jan. 2, while walking and playing at the far end of the Trade Wind Fields Preserve with one of our dogs, another dog, whose owner was nearby, was observed to engage in an escalating situation with our dog, ending with that dog pouncing furiously on top of our smaller dog, pinning her to the ground. The owner lifted his dog off and chastised it, apologizing. We believe that any dog that is not friendly should be on a leash.

Another time, returning to the parking lot along the walking path with a friend, a rollicking black Lab puppy of about six months leaped up on our dog with all four feet, landing on her chest and bowling her over completely. She was stiff and sore from being knocked down.

We would also kindly suggest that dog owners be responsible for droppings that their pets leave on the walking paths. If droppings are done out in the woods, it’s not a great deal different from waste left by other animals … deer, rabbits, raccoons, skunks … but the piles left on the walking paths should be picked up and discarded, consistent with signs clearly posted at the entrance to the park.

People of all ages love to go to the Trade Wind park to walk their dogs. We love to be there and watch the dogs frolic joyfully with each other, playing and socializing. What we hope is that the whole array of wonderful dogs and dog owners find a safe way to share the paths and fields. We are so lucky to have such a marvelous place to get together. We are grateful to the Land Bank for making this space available to us.

Ilka List, Pam Butterick, Jim Butterick

Oak Bluffs