A Neighborhood Problem Essays Example
We are fortunate to live in a pleasant neighborhood, looking out onto public gardens with grassy areas, sandy walkways, and an attractive selection of different tree types – all installed and maintained by the municipality. So far, so good. However, the problem arises because the gardens are also attractive to many dog owners, who see these gardens as a more enjoyable area for dog walking than (presumably) their own immediate neighborhood. Or maybe some of them live in apartments having no green areas nearby. In which case, it is understandable that they want to walk their pets somewhere away from busy streets.
That would be fine if they (the dog owners) behaved responsibly. But sadly, and annoyingly, the majority of them do not. Although there are signs prominently displayed cautioning dog owners that dogs exercised in public areas must be on a leash and that owners must pick up the deposited dog mess, far too many just ignore the signs completely. They allow their beloved canine friends to squat and foul not just the walkways, but the grassy areas too – the places where parents bring their small children to play. Not only do they allow the animals to leave their mess behind, but choose to look the other way while it is happening, apparently pretending that they have no connection with the offending animal. Nor do those lazy, irresponsible owners have any physical connection with their pet in most instances; i.e. the dog is not on a leash, and is therefore not under control.
The main reason the problem exists and has not yet been resolved is lack of enforcement. The signs are displayed, also indicating the potential fines that could be imposed, but I have never yet seen a dog warden or animal control officer in those gardens. Judging by the numbers of dog owners not complying with the rules and regulations – most of them – It seems self-evident that the cost of hiring and paying a sufficient number of individuals and meeting the costs of their required vehicles would be more than covered by the fines collected.
Failing to pick up dog mess and not having the animals on a leash in public areas are just two of the offenses that could be detected and dealt with by those personnel. The various regulations applicable to ownership of pet dogs could also be checked and owners compelled to comply where breaches are uncovered. For example, where regular rabies vaccinations are required, the situation could be checked and appropriate action taken if necessary. If there are local regulations for pet dogs to be licensed and wear a State-issued metal tag and collar – that too could be a check carried out by the officers. When I first acquired my beloved German Shepherd from a rescue shelter, I checked with the local veterinary practice, whether in my area a dog owner needs to obtain a license for keeping a dog, She replied with a wry smile: “Yes, you do need one, but there are about 1,000 dogs in this town and about 30 licenses.” That just about says it all. Enforcement of the existing regulations has to be the solution. Regulations without the backup of enforcement are no more than words on paper.
Failing to pick up dog mess is totally irresponsible, knowing that small children can be rendered blind from organisms living within it. Perhaps even more seriously, a bite from a dog that has not been vaccinated against rabies is potentially fatal.
There are also far too many stray or abandoned dogs. That problem too could be overcome by enforcement. If all pet dogs were compulsorily neutered unless specifically licensed for breeding, most if not all strays and abandoned animals would be banished from our streets. Dogs not neutered or lacking microchips could be impounded and the owners (if traced) fined.
The entire problem is easy to resolve, it just needs the will and the resources.