Q: My six-month-old miniature poodle pup was attacked by an aggressive boxer. We were in a park and both animals were on leash. I tripped over the other dog's extendable leash, which had gone to full length. * * *Read the whole thing here. So it seems we're not the only folks complaining about irresponsible scofflaw dog owners, like the ones in Prospect Park and Central Park--the majority, from what we've seen--who flout New York's 6-foot law when they deign to leash their dogs at all. It's law-abiding dog owners too who are complaining, at least in Canada.
A: It is an unfortunate commentary on the state of dog laws when owners feel the need to defend themselves. This is not a problem you should have to face.
Once an attack is in progress, there is no safe route to take. All you can do is minimize potential damage. All dogs, regardless of breed, have the ability to do harm if provoked.
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Pay close attention to the leash used by the other owner. If the dog cannot reach you, you will avoid injury. Extendable leashes can reach 15 feet or more. Long lines similarly give a dog room to charge. Give a wide berth in these situations. In cramped areas, pause and ask the owner if their leash is secured.
I prefer all dogs on a plain leash that complies with municipal bylaws. In most communities, this is around six feet. Longer lines should be reserved for controlled training situations or potty breaks in the yard.
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This afternoon in Prospect Park, two females in their late 40s were observed with an unleashed block mongrel on Wellhouse Drive below the Maryland Monument.