When I read this Face to Face, I immediately felt the need to respond. I have had two experiences that have clearly shown the answer to the question is "no." I want to also say that it is usually a few irresponsible pet owners that ruin everything for the majority that are responsible.
Last summer, a friend, her two sons, myself and my two daughters were walking along the trail around Sasamat Lake in Port Moody. It is my understanding that dogs are not to be allowed off-leash on this trail. It was the middle of summer, early evening and very busy. The kids, ages five to nine years, were running slightly ahead of us when they were confronted by a dog that was off-leash.
The owner was behind the dog on a cell phone paying no attention to her dog and it was running around jumping on the kids. My youngest daughter is not comfortable around dogs and unfortunately the dog nipped her on the stomach.
The dog owner frantically tried to control her dog while my child was hysterical. I couldn't even figure out what was wrong right away in the confusion. While I was trying to comfort her, the owner managed to get control of her dog and tried to come back and apologize but my daughter was so upset she ran away as she didn't want to be anywhere near the dog (can you blame her?).
The only positive thing about this incident is that it could have been much worse. My daughter suffered only a nip and a scare and is OK now. It most likely traumatized me more than her.
The second incident involves the other lovely issue, poo. Just last weekend, my older daughter was playing soccer at McLean Park in Port Coquitlam. It had just finished snowing and the field was covered, and I didn't realize at first that the snow was concealing poo. There was so much poo you could not even take a step without stepping in it. All the parents were warning the newcomers to watch where they stepped. To make matters worse, the girls' water bottles were on the grass and when my daughter went to pick hers up her hand got covered in poo.
Now, with the amount of poo on a field that size, it had to be more than one dog owner. Is this a common occurrence or was I just there on a bad day? I don't think I want to find out. I was pretty disgusted by the whole thing.
Christine Stuart,Port Moody