Monday, June 9, 2008


The issue we all knew was coming has finally arrived - the issue of dogs on and off leash in the park. So far there has been an uneasy equilibrium between those who can live with the status quo (i.e. the vast majority of dog owners are responsible, know their individual dog's behavioual characteristics and needs, already leash undisciplined dogs, control them near wildlife, kids and cyclists, pick up after them, there aren't that many problems, so we don't need regulations etc....) and those who want change. Critics of an official off-leash area warn of legions of professional dog walkers coming from far and wide to Sam Smith Park to exercise and relieve their herds of barking, defecating dogs, of frightened wildlife, of precious park green space cordoned off for single use. Ted Tracewicz is suggesting a possible compromise solution. He can be reached at .......
Due to the recent spate of fines levied on leash-free dog owners, and to avoid any future problems which may arise between dog owners and other park users, I have decided to support the idea of designating an area within the park to be leash free. I have sent the e-mail below to Mark Grimes. Anyone else in favour of a leash free area can go to the City of Toronto Parks site and fill out the application for and off-leash area and/or send a message to Councillor Grimes.
'Dear Mr. Grimes:
Subsequent to our brief chat , I would like to emphasize my support for having a dog leash-free zone in the area surrounding the water treatment plant, on the south-west side of Colonel Samuel Smith Park. To my mind this is the best area since it would have the least impact on park users (I don't think it is even in the park proper although I could be wrong) and on park wildlife. Another advantage is the fact that it is already partially fenced, and, as you pointed out, has a gate. A fenced in area will keep our dogs safe and away from traffic.
In order to be calm and obedient, dogs need to run, play, and socialize with other dogs. Currently, we cannot fulfill this need without the threat of receiving a hefty fine. As someone who tries to limit my carbon emissions whenever possible I do not want to drive my dog around to other far away leash free areas. I have given the matter of where best to locate a leash free zone considerable thought and I have concluded that this would be the best site.
Thank-you for your consideration and support in this matter,
Ted Tracewicz'


rgblog said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

A comment to this post was deleted by the administrator because it was an ad for a dog-walking product.

Anonymous said...

There is already an off-leash park up the street for dogs.

Many young children are afraid of dogs and I feel this would detract families from bringing their children to Sam Smith.