Call-To-Action: Send in Your Stories of Scofflaw Dog Owners
Scofflaw dog owner Amy Cooper reacts after being told to leash her dog in the Ramble.
On October 14, 2020, it was reported that Amy Cooper made two false 911 calls that day. In the second call, previously unreported, Cooper claimed the man tried to assault her. "The defendant twice reported that an African American man was putting her in danger, first by stating that he was threatening her and her dog, then making a second call indicating that he tried to assault her in the Ramble area of the park," said Joan Illuzzi, a senior prosecutor. Read the DA's full statement.
Overview of Confrontation
New York, NY - On Monday, a video went viral showing a female dog owner "calling the cops" on a black man after he asked her to leash her dog in an area that requires leashes. The woman is white and her intent is clear, "I'm going to tell [the cops] there is an African American man threatening my life." Amy Cooper becomes agitated after Christian Cooper (no relation) begins filming her. Christian tells her, "Please don't come close to me" and "Please call the cops."
Amy proceeds to call the police, as Christian continues to film her. For the safety of his own life, Christian should continue filming her. Amy tells dispatchers, "There is a man, an African American … He's recording me and threatening me and my dog." Amy feels so "infringed upon" and "fragile" she nearly chokes her own dog, while trying to hold onto its collar -- she still has not leashed her dog either. In a matter of seconds, Amy manages to threaten the life of Christian and her own dog.
Monday, May 25, 2020 - The Ramble in Central Park
Central Park this morning: This woman's dog is tearing through the plantings in the Ramble.
ME: Ma'am, dogs in the Ramble have to be on the leash at all times. The sign is right there.
HER: The dog runs are closed. He needs his exercise.
ME: All you have to do is take him to the other side of the drive, outside the Ramble, and you can let him run off leash all you want.
HER: It's too dangerous.
ME: Look, if you're going to do what you want, I'm going to do what I want, but you're not going to like it.
HER: What's that?
ME (to the dog): Come here, puppy!
HER: He won't come to you.
ME: We'll see about that...
I pull out the dog treats I carry for just for such intransigence. I didn't even get a chance to toss any treats to the pooch before Karen scrambled to grab the dog.
HER: DON'T YOU TOUCH MY DOG!!!!!
That's when I started video recording with my iPhone, and when her inner Karen fully emerged and took a dark turn...
Intimidation, rage, assault1 -- even fatal assault -- after telling a dog owner, who is flouting a leash law, to leash his or her pet is nothing new to us. Threats of calling the cops and worse, frequently come in the wake of telling a scofflaw dog owner to adhere to the law. The degree of "entitlement" these dog owners express, just like Amy did, should put the public on notice that scofflaw dog owners often engage in escalating hostile behavior when a person asks that they leash their pet.
Within 24 hours of the filming, Amy had surrendered her dog to the rescue group she had adopted him from, and had been fired from her high-level finance job at Franklin Templeton. Christian, who graduated from Harvard, expressed conflict about her fate. "I'm not excusing racism," he told media outlets. "But I don't know if her life needed to be torn apart." Amy later admitted in a statement that she was the one who had acted "inappropriately by not having my dog on a leash."
In 2017, the Seattle Times examined the attitudes of dog owners and those who aren't wild about dogs. Some in the latter category "vent their frustration about 'self-absorbed dog owners' on Internet forums." Others have "resigned themselves to being yelled at" when they speak up in public spaces. "My biggest gripe is all the dogs who are let off leash in parks despite the leash laws and the hostile reaction you frequently get if you say anything," a retired English teacher said.
Colleen Lynn, the founder and president of DogsBite.org, a nonprofit public education website, said the conversation is often erroneously cast as being for or against canines when it should be about entitlement.
"I don't think this is an issue of 'not liking' dogs," she wrote in an email exchange. "What alarms and annoys people are negligent dog owners and their careless, thoughtless attitude toward others. - June 9, 2017
Finding instances of dog owners being filmed after being told to leash their pet on YouTube proved to be difficult.2 But Carolin von Petzholdt has several videos dedicated to it. Like Christian, she is a bird lover. One incident of taking her parrot to a county park nearly resulted in assault. This particular dog owner is the antithesis of what we mean when we say that scofflaw dog owners will often engage in escalating hostile behavior when a person politely asks them to leash their dog.
Leash laws are a simple public safety measure. Scofflaw dog owners take pride in breaking the law and are the first to declare "victimhood."
This dog owner classically projects his own wrongdoing onto Carolin (failure to leash, presuming he has the right to come to a public space and "take it over"). Carolin is assertive, but knows the situation is escalating. After taking a photo of her license plate, the male dog owner eventually saunters away. She states, "Some dog owners are really inconsiderate and really jerks." When Carolin returns home, she calls the police to understand what she should do if this occurs again.
When Carolin free-flies her parrot named Hope, she reminds dog owners to leash their pet.
Central Park is 843 acres. The Ramble is a heavily wooded 38-acre section described as a "wild garden" and supports over 230 bird species. Dogs are only allowed in the Ramble leashed. In many parts of Central Park, dogs are allowed off-leash from 6:00 am to 9:00 am and from 9:00 pm to 1:00 am when the park closes. At the time of Amy Cooper's "entitlement meltdown," it was between 7:30 am and 8:00 am, when hundreds of park acres were open for off-leash dogs.
Amy wanted a private oasis for her dog smack dab in the middle of a protected environmental area. Christian Cooper is not only a birdwatcher; he is a board member of the New York City Audubon Society. So when Christian said the dog was "tearing through the plantings" and he told Amy to leash her dog, he was speaking as an expert. Unlike members of the public who are not or would only be "silent and stew" after seeing such an activity, Christian spoke up immediately.
Amy did not only lose her job and dog, she may face criminal charges for falsely reporting an incident. The NYC Commission on Human Rights has also opened an investigation into the incident. The Central Park Civic Association even issued a statement asking the mayor to impose a lifetime Central Park ban on this lady "for her deliberate, racial misleading of law enforcement and violating behavioral guidelines set so that all can enjoy our city’s most famous park."
Call-To-Action: Send Your Stories
For 13 years we have been fielding complaints about scofflaw dog owners, who flout leash laws, and complaints about dogs "tearing up" ecologically fragile areas. Virtually all remain in private email exchanges. The viral video involving the two Coopers during Covid-19 shows that these issues should be written about more, and certainly, they should be recorded more. "Entitled" dog owner Amy is nothing new to us, but she weaponized racism too, sinking her own career.
Despite this incident becoming a national issue, dominating media coverage, a major factor is being left out of every story. Scofflaw dog owners like Amy are a dime-a-dozen. Such owners routinely engage in escalating hostile behavior after being asked to leash their pet. If more dog owners followed leash laws, an insurmountable number of injuries could be prevented each year. This includes bite injuries and non bite injuries, especially to bicyclists, caused by unleashed dogs.
We want to hear your stories about hostile responses from scofflaw dog owners who flout leash laws. After learning about the Central Park incident, one person told us, "I was chased by a man using his leash as a whip when I was pregnant, simply because I asked him to leash his dog." Another said, "Just a couple of weeks ago, after I told a man his dog was supposed to be on a leash (again on a public sidewalk near my home), he yelled at me, 'Just die! Just die!'"
Send us your stories of hostile dog owners flouting leash laws or leave them in comments!
Christian Cooper gave an interview with The View. "The Ramble is an area of Central Park, which is protected because there is a lot of wildlife there and a lot of delicate plantings," he said. "So it is posted all over the Ramble that dogs are supposed to be on a leash at all times. Unfortunately, we've had a problem with this for many, many years. People think, "Ah well, it doesn't really apply to me." We've been fighting for awhile to get enforcement," Cooper said. "A lot of us have been recording these incidences of scofflaw behavior regarding the leash laws, so I pulled out my mine to document it so that we would have some evidence of what's going on in the Ramble."
2By contrast, Youtube is filled with stories of irresponsible dog owners who lash out after being confronted by animal lovers for leaving their dog in a hot car.
12/10/19: Dramatic Attack Footage Shown in Vicious and Dangerous Dog Hearing
12/06/18: San Francisco Animal Control: Vicious and Dangerous Dogs Unleashed
I suspect that being a dog-leash scofflaw who escalates the conflict even when politely asked the leash said dog, is likely correlated with a conflict-prone personality disorder.
No, I’m not a psychiatrist. But it doesn’t take a professional to make the observation that such behavior is far more likely to be IN character with that person, rather than something that is radically out of their character.
People who routinely violate boundaries and immediately get aggressive when called out for doing so … are almost always people with personality disorders.
It’s unfortunate that animals end up being used as proxies in their owners’ psychodrama battles with the world … but the evidence is all around us. In no small part, it drives the fatality listings on this site.
Well said ! We’ve all heard the mocking laughter and hateful rhetoric when asking someone nicely to contain their dog.
if it goes that far, “if your dog touches me, I’ll shoot it” usually works.
This. I suspect her co-workers are happy not to work with her any longer. What a normal person would have done when confronted and scared……grab her dog and immediately leave the area. The fact that she didn’t and that she escalated the situation to fight for her right to break the rules, shows her personality and boundary violation. As a comment on another site said, she probably had issues at work, and this public issue was the one the “straw that broke the camel’s back” so to speak.
A logical conclusion with which I respectfully disagree. I hike with several dog-owning friends who are not at all conflict-prone. They react to being requested to leash their dogs with immediate anger. They react as if the request is an attack on their dogs. This is a visceral defense-of-my-family response. It’s totally unreasonable and misplaced, but I’m sure that’s what I’m seeing. After incidents (non-contact), I still can’t get them to understand that they are wrong. They continue reciting the biography of their wonderful safe dog. The dog owning community must step forward and help people be self-aware of how irrational and inappropriate this emotional response to a request to leash is. No doubt this trigger issue affects conflict-prone people more, but from what I’ve seen, it affects even the peaceable dog owners.
I think it’s even more personal than that. Their dog is their mini-me. Any negative comment about the dog registers psychologically as a negative comment about THEM. In their mind THEY are being attacked.
I don’t even GET that. My dog is fully off-leash trained.
I recall my dog if someone gets near or he’s trying to go to some person. *Everywhere*–even in unleashed areas. Why? Because I don’t know what their relationship to dogs, is. They could be frightened, or allergic.
It’s that attitude of “my dog is more important than you” nonsense I truly cannot comprehend.
The odd time, things haven’t gone smoothly (like he thought one dog was his bff and ran over to see it) and that’s MY fault and I apologize profusely, every time.
My dog is safe, everywhere, every time.
Most of these clowns can’t control their dogs.
That’s why they have this attitude. Because their fluffykins is an uncontrollable barking crapfest that won’t “come on command” and they’re too embarrassed to just own up to their training failures and would rather whine, “s/he’s an abused rescue dog” than educate themselves and train the dog.
What a horrendous outcome for Ms. Cooper. Looks like a buffoon on the video, loses a good job, and might face criminal charges. And the problem would have been solved in about 1 second if she just would have leashed her dog. What is wrong with people?
Leashing your dog is foremost for the dog’s own safety. I always leash, even in my own front yard. Most dogs have a terribly unreliable ‘COME’, particularly when they are distracted. I have seen dogs come within a hair of being hit by cars as theyr idiot owners stood by screaming ‘COME HERE’.
I got one for you that you may have forgotten…
Did they ever catch the man who did this?
They did, he pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and he was supposed to be sentenced on May 28 but I can’t find any information about it. It doesn’t sound like he’ll do serious time I’d any.
I have lots of stories about being threatened with hostility and dangerous false accusations leveled at me by at large dog offenders when I asked them to please leash their dog. I’m going to try and keep it brief here and now. On May 22, 2020, I was walking my daily 7 miles like I have been daily for the past four years to accumulate 10,000 pedestrian miles, when I passed the 1680 range of Cedarwood Drive on the other side of the street. A small dog unleashed on its own unfenced property runs into the street to alert at my ankles, and it almost got run over by a car. I said hello to the nice friendly people to get their attention, and I said “Your dog would be safe if it was on a leash”. He told me to just proceed. I was on the other side of the street and I said your dog almost got run over by a car. He said “Because you’re there.“ I proceeded to grab my cell phone to start recording video and to call animal control and to walk away and that is when the person living at 1691 Cedarwood Drive charged at me from across the street while I was past his property, screaming and yelling at me to get out of the neighborhood. He was open carrying a pistol on his hip and I turned to face him and he pushed his open palms against my shoulders upon running into my face, yelling at me to get out of this neighborhood, while attempting to reach out with his hand to snatch my cell phone. When that happened I was already on the phone with police dispatch to report the dog that almost got run over by a car a few seconds earlier. So this screaming hostile person, whose first name is Scott, got recorded audio and video on my cell phone and recorded by the police dispatch, assaulting and battering me while he was armed. When the police arrived, they asked me if I wanted to press charges, I said no, only if the prosecutor wants me to. I’m just simply too afraid that if I do agree to press charges or ask to press charges that he’ll just simply kill me. This incident which occurred literally a few days ago, is only one of many run-ins I’ve had with at large dog owners in Prescott while walking my 10,000 pedestrian miles in four years. I have told anybody who has ears, that the way that the hostility of the surface of the earth and the evil wickedness of people catches up to people who live in nice neighborhoods is via at-large dogs and their hostile owners. The at-large dog offender will stop at absolutely nothing to protect his/her right to have their dog at large on the public street.
I had another concern about the dog in this video. I understand she had recently gotten the dog and returned it to the rescue afterwards. Why would anyone obtain a new dog and attempt to walk it off leash? When obtaining a new dog, one should be putting in some serious time developing a relationship with that dog. Suspending the dog on a tight collar would not help that handler develop a good working relationship with that dog. She would do better with a robotic dog, and she probably wouldn’t need to leash it.
I’m glad you clarified this. The dog acted scared of her and justifiably so. I’m glad the dog was returned.
There’s a larger issue here, and it’s the entitlement mentality of many dog owners. We’ve all experienced it.
Doesn’t matter whether it’s politely asking them to keep their dog on a leash or pleading with them to PLEASE DO SOMETHING to quiet the dog that’s barking your good night’s sleep away.
Ask these people to conform to the norms of polite society and you’re asking for trouble. And sometimes that trouble can end your life.
One of the best posts ever on this topic: https://animaluncontrol.blogspot.com/2012/10/modern-savagery.html
One of the best things to stop barking dogs: http://www.ultimatebarkcontrol.com
Tried those. They only work when there’s a direct line of sight between the device and the barking dog(s).
So, if you’re across the street and being soundblasted by the dogs, you’re outta luck.
Same scenario if the dogs are behind a fence. Too bad for you. You just wasted your money on a bark control device.
I am as sick of entitled dog owners as anyone but how is “I am going to do what I like and you won’t like it” and then trying to feed her dog acceptable behavior?
If a white man had threatened her like like that she would be a hero for standing up to the “patriarchy” and he would be the subject of the current 2 minute hate, not her.
As a “good NYC liberal” she should have known that currently the worst thing you can do is be filmed inconveniencing a black person. She forgot her place in the progressive stack of ID politics. She “forgot her place” and “back talked on of her ‘betters’ and is now paying dearly for it. The same people that insist felons should be given “another chance” and hired after committing robberies and murders will demand that she remain unemployable.
There are no heroes here. I see 2 entitled,obnoxious dysfunctional people. Makes me glad I don’t live in NYC
When you call the police they ask you the race of the person you are reporting. Telling the police it was a black man wasn’t “Making it racial” it was providing a description.
I don’t like off-leash dogs and the woman definitely was confrontational and racial but it was also a man confronting a woman in an isolated area of the park at a very quiet time of day. As a woman and a feminist, I find it troubling that there’s been zero acknowledgement that a man confronting and filming a woman in an isolated area while she protests and asks him to stop is being very threatening. I’m not sure this is a great example of scofflaw dog owners.
Gotta say I’m with Colleen on this one.
There would have been no viral video if Ms. Cooper had simply leashed her dog and walked away. Or even if she had simply leashed her dog and stood her ground and kept asking Mr. Cooper to stop videoing her. (Note that he DID stop as soon as she leashed her dog. Even though her phone call to the cops was not yet over. That suggests that his whole reason for the video was to document her flouting the leash law.)
a man confronting a woman in an isolated area of the park at a very quiet time of day
He didn’t approach her. She approached him. He did not reach out towards her. She reached towards him. He ASKED HER, REPEATEDLY, to STOP APPROACHING HIM. He said PLEASE.
When she threatened to call the cops, he asked her to please call the cops.
NONE of his behavior is that of a dangerous, theatening male. The threat and danger are entirely in the unbalanced mind of Amy Cooper.
A female with a non-unbalanced mind in that same situation would have handled it very, very differently. And there would have been no viral video, no getting fired from her job, and no need to surrender the dog.
Whether getting caught in the act of being a scofflaw was what triggered Ms. Cooper to go from scofflaw to raving racist maniac is anyone’s guess. The video being recorded by Mr. Cooper certainly made it impossible for her to deny what she was doing.
People with grandiose senses of entitlement really, really don’t like being held accountable.
Her cocker spaniel was off-leash in a quiet area without people or other dogs around, and unless I missed something in the reporting, the dog didn’t approach the guy. He objected because it was a bird sanctuary, which is a legitimate concern but also totally inconsequential to the safety of humans. It doesn’t fit into the usual dogsbite area of interest, which is dangerous dogs.
NOT defending offleash owners, or entitled owners, or racists, etc., etc. Just not wanting to get distracted by all the unwanted but not dangerous things dog owners do.
As Judge Milian is always saying on The People’s Court, as she adjudicates yet another dog attack case, “Everything is fine with a dog off leash — until it isn’t.”
Dog leash laws are commonsense public safety measures that draw a very clear bright line. Such laws do not ask anybody to guess at a dog’s character or to trust an owner’s judgment. Animals are inherently unpredictable. The law only requires that a dog in public be under direct physical control by way of a leash at all times.
Ms. Cooper ran a red light. Rationalizing her running a red light or suggesting that calling out somebody for running a red light is a “distraction” because she didn’t actually cause a car crash is to totally misunderstand the role of safety measures intended to prevent incidents. Complying with the “rules of the road” is nothing less than risk management, and ignoring that only invites the self-entitled to wreak havoc.
And that some dog owners exhibit gross self-entitlement is precisely what demonstrates the necessity of rules in the first place. When you ask somebody to leash their dog, “It’s not causing any harm” is NOT the appropriate response. Flouting a simple public safety law is proof positive that you need to question that person’s judgment.
Such laws do not ask anybody to guess at a dog’s character or to trust an owner’s judgment.
Agreed. Person Without Dog should not have to guess whether an unfamiliar approaching dog (esp. a large one, closing in fast) is friendly or not.
That kind of situation can get an unleashed dog killed in states where the law allows a citizen to use lethal force to stop a dog that is pursuing another domestic animal.
Responsible dog owners don’t endanger their own dogs by putting other people in the position of having to make snap judgments about the intentions of strange dogs in a context where safety, and quite possibly lives, hang in the balance.
The other thing we frequently see is that pit bull owners claim that their pibble is “just playing!” when the dog is being clearly aggressive and about 2 seconds from mauling a person or pet.
Some dog owners — not always pit bull owners, but most noticeably these people — are shamefully ignorant when it comes to reading their dog’s behavior and body language.
That is why leashes are the very least common-sense requirement for dogs in public settings. Because random citizens shouldn’t have to guess. Because some dog owners are blithering idiots. And because friendly dogs shouldn’t get the bad end of a snap judgment by a fearful citizen, just because some dog owners are naive or lazy.
“That is why leashes are the very least common-sense requirement for dogs in public settings.”
This is an important point that bears emphasizing. A leash is the MINIMAL safety requirement in public. The dog is supposed to be under control, which a leash in and of itself may not guarantee. Even leashed dogs can and do bite, and a dog on a 15-ft leash is under practically no control at all. But you have to start with a leash and the principle of direct physical control of an animal. Some dogs may even require a muzzle.
You’re way off base here.
Why would a man video her if he was intent on committing a crime against her? Nothing like providing irrefutable evidence of your wrongdoings for further investigation. What he is doing–is documenting HER illegal behavior in case he winds up maimed or murdered at the hands of police–an all too frequent occurrence, sadly.
While I get the “unsafe woman argument” you need to watch that again. She clearly intends him harm because she is in the wrong here and he was “uppity” enough, to tell her that without raising his voice. I would agree, he could have worded that, better. She’s not too frightened at that point to storm up to him, *within striking distance* to yell at him.
I took from it that she is unable to recall her dog promptly which is why the man offers a treat so one of them can capture her dog.
I’ve done that myself, on occasion.
She had numerous opportunities to walk away. He didn’t move or approach her.
If she was so frightened, instead of strangling her dog and screaming, maybe walk away and call the police from a safe distance, like a sane person might do? Instead of right in front of him in a big power display where if he *did* intend her harm, she was within his distance to grapple.
She escalates the encounter. In fact, I found her downright histrionic.
What I experience pales in comparison to others. There are two ladies who walk their dogs off-leash on my city street and the dogs go in my vegetable garden to crap. They break off my plants that I tenderly cultivate and contaminate my food supply. I am usually at work when this happens and my next-door neighbor yells at them and tells me about it. These women act like they do not understand what the problem is and they sass my neighbor who is yelling at them. One of these women walks two dogs. Last summer, we were having some remodeling done and our contractor was at our house while we were at work. One dog is a chihuahua type and the other a pit mix. The chihuahua was off-leash and in our yard when our cat attacked it. This resulted in the lady screaming and yelling at our contractor that he control his cat or she would sick her pit mix on it. Cops and animal control were called.
Last year, while I was having a handyman doing work inside of my house, I was doing work outside.
Well, wouldn’t you know it, that #$%&^ dog from across the street had gotten out. Again.
And it was in my back yard. Where it ambushed me.
Suffice it to say that I said things that can’t be reprinted on this blog. But they caused the dog to leave my back yard and get back onto its side of the street.
My handyman let me know that he had Ole Bessie stashed in his glove box. And, if that dog ever came over my way again, he wouldn’t hesitate to use his little metallic friend.
Christy, as another gardener I can commiserate
with you. Yes people are just so thoughtless even if their pooches are on leashes about letting them pee on plantings. One owner insistson walking her dogs loose and gets belligerent when confronted.
FWIW I am trying Mint animal repellent. It definitely discourages squirrels and am trying it in one area where the dogs like to pee to see if works to repel dogs also.
I have found Cayenne pepper very effective. I get a big container cheap at Costco. Goes right up a dog’s nose.
There is no place for unleashed dogs in public. Legitimate Service Dogs wear leashes in public. Their handlers have control of them. AKC allows no dogs off leash at dog shows unless the dog is crated or actively performing in an off lead exercise.
One of my young dogs ran out of an obedience ring off lead and was absolutely wrong in doing so. He was entertaining himself. Outside the ring, ring stewards and other exhibitors surrounded him keeping everyone including him safe until I could get him. No discipline. No praise. Just calmly go get him, put his leash on him, walk away, and plan more training exercises.
We laughed. He’s a dog and exhibited dog behavior. He finished that same title a week later with a different judge in a different city.
A few weeks ago a first responder asked me if I had a dog present that would bite him. I was upset, as I would never allow one of my dogs to bite anyone. I would have to be unconscious or dead for that to happen. Dog owners must be responsible people. There are few excuses for attacks.
Some years ago a beautiful male Rottweiler was in the back seat of a car in a serious accident. His owner was not conscious at the scene. Folks surrounded her car, protected him, and had him safely transported from the scene. He’s a highly socialized show dog, and he eventually went safely back to his owner.
My point here is that all dog owners should be responsible and work together to aid one another. Why are people arguing against safety? How does the utilization of safe principles in dog handling hurt anyone?
1000x THIS ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
The man was threatening her dog – he said “you wont like what I do” and then attempted to call her dog over to him – so I can understand her being scared and angry (I would be if someone threatened my dog), but agree she should not have had her dog offleash in a wildlife sanctuary area. Also she damn near strangled her own dog, stupid woman. I’m glad the rescue took the dog back.
The bird situation is another issue. Fair enough the dog should be leashed and the guy was being a dick about it but I kind of agree with the dog walker in that I wouldn’t want a parrot (particularly such a large species, macaw) flying around loose near me. Those beaks can crush a person’s finger bones and tear out chunks of flesh, they can fly so they can reach the face easily, imo they are actually more dangerous than the man’s little sheltie (or whatever it was), and macaws are WILD animals, they may be hand reared and tame to their owners but they are not a domesticated species and are easily capable of attacking humans if they get startled.
My city has a leash law ordinance in effect. Every public city park and recreation area, other than the dog park, has signs that say NO PETS ALLOWED, NO PETS IN PARK, NO UNLEASHED DOGS ALLOWED, NO DOGS ON FIELD. These signs serve a purpose, but according to the average dog owner and LEO, they are merely polite suggestions, to be followed or enforced or not at their own discretion.
I went to the city baseball complex that has four fields. Obvious NO PETS IN PARK, NO DOGS ON FIELD signs. I went to go out on a field to play, but I notice there is a young man on one field with his large dog (pit bull), offleash, playing fetch. He throws the ball, looks down at his phone, dog fetches, repeat. The fields are not fully enclosed. At any time, the dog could take off without warning, be out of control all over the place and around other people; all in a place where dogs do not belong and are prohibited by signage and ordinance.
I was extremely frustrated and decided to leave. On my way out, I called the non-emergency police line and reported a young man at the baseball field with his dog off-leash; I reminded the operator that dogs are not allowed on that property, she said an officer would be out shortly. I figured this young man would be told not to bring his dog to the fields anymore and I wouldn’t see the two of them there again.
A couple of days later, I am back at the baseball park, sitting on a bench by a field, chit-chatting with a nice neighbor man. Here comes the young man with his dog, and he walks up to where we are sitting and greets the neighbor. They exchange a few words and the young man complains that he’s being hassled for bringing his dog to the complex. They commiserate back and forth, and the young man says that one day he is going to be pushed too far (for being hassled about his dog) and go off on someone. He said that the responding LEO told him that he didn’t have to take his dog and leave the park, and that the LEO said he wished he wasn’t bothered with such non-issues, as it was a waste of their time. After saying bye to his neighbor friend, the young man continued on to his chosen field to play fetch. I got up and left.
The young man continues to use the field as his own personal dog park. I have subsequently seen him on social media hamming it up with LEO dogs that come to his place of business, and getting praise from our city police department for lunches the business provides them.
The veiled threat of violence towards someone that would dare to hassle him about his dog reinforced why my first choice isn’t to engage directly with a dog owner who is deliberately and knowingly flouting the rules; I’ve been told that’s a job for city LEOs, but apparently not. In his home state, this individual had been charged with assault and battery and intimidating a witness years ago; which further demonstrates the mentality of the average bully breed dog owner and why it is a risk to deal with them directly, and the possible repercussions for doing so.
Yes an unfortunate proportion of dog owners have an overblown sense of entitlement, spurred on by useless laws, lax enforcement, and authorities that want nothing to do with getting people to control their animals. If the local dog warden needed money all he’d have to do is ticket dog owners for off leash, dog loose, no tags or microchip, broken fence, etc. If the fine increased every time for repeat offenders they’d be making a mint worth of money in no time. We have traffic cops and meter maids to hand out fines, dog owners are a gold mine of violations waiting to be tapped.
That’s DISGUSTING!! Good on you for confronting those women.
I’ve had four altercations in three days now. First, I walked out to get the mail when a person’s very dog aggressive mutt, from four houses up the street, came charging at me. I was too far out to get back into the house and felt running would probably make the situation worse so I unfolded my knife blade when the idiot’s dog heard him yelling and started back two feet short of me. I explained to him I had a knife, and he needs to leash his dog when it’s out front. His excuses were “It’s a baby” and “It don’t bite”. I told him that’s what they all say. His response was “Keep walking before I get pissed off”. Really.
Took the dog for a walk today about 2 PM and had problems with three more idiot dog owners. First one was right outside my front door. My neighbors, whose yard continuously sounds like a kennel, finally decided to walk and exercise their dogs for the first time in the three years I’ve lived here. Kudos to them! Unfortunately, the person walking the HUGE black lab was the ten year old boy, who probably weighs less than the dog and in no way will he be able to control the dog if it gets aggressive. The minute I opened the dog the dog started barking at each other so I just went back in.
Then, going a short ways dog the street, someone’s small terrier dog ‘got loose’ (I don’t think it was tied to the ground anchor personally) and ran into the street at my dog as we were crossing. I don’t get people’s obsession with having their dog in the FRONT yard when they have a fenced back yard. I explained to her that if MY dog was aggressive her dog would have likely died right then and there.
So the tattooed morons across the street from her piped up about how I was lucky it wasn’t THIER dog that was loose. Fortunately their house is for sale. Seriously, when did dog ownership default to mostly morons and psychopaths?
Oh wow, I definitely GET this. I feel for ya.
It’s like people who just arbitrarily, when I’m walking my dog (who is clearly heeling, sit-stopping, etc) and dimwits just let their dog yank them, on a harness and extenda lead right up in his face.
Then they yell, “BUT MY DOG IS FRIENDLY” (and clearly, mine is, so I can’t say “mine’s not”).
I wanna scream, “Just because you are a lazy twatwaffle who won’t train your dog, why are you ruining the relationship trust that MY trained dog, is exhibiting”?
But then, ya know, I’ll just be hauled off for being a crazy lady because I confronted an idiot with their idiocy.
One thing I’ll say about COVID. Quite a number of these fools don’t do that now because they’re afraid of being yelled at for not keeping their dog six feet away.
It took a pandemic for them to stop doing the idiot thing they think they’re entitled to do.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve stood there panicked because on a busy streetcorner, some small person with a big dog on a harness and extenda lead has been yanked into traffic by an exuberant dog.
Do they NOT realize that a 50lb strong dog can yank a 200 lb man completely off his feet with 6 feet of torque *on a flat collar* ? Yet there they are, (or their kid) with a 10ft string, attached to *a pulling harness* and a 100lb dog.
Never mind how easy it is for any agile dog to climb or jump, a six foot fence. I’ve seen Jack Russells that can do it.
The laws of physics do apply to dogs.
Thanks for blogging this. Off leash dogs cause all sorts of problems, not the least of which includes bites and other attacks.
Anyone concerned for the safety of their dog will NOT let them run off leash. A few anecdotes which I may or may not have blogged about in the past:
– Co-worker of mine lets “Roscoe” off leash to run wild in the neighborhood. Roscoe drinks anti-freeze, dies.
– Joker in FL state park lets dog off leash to frolic in river. Alligator eats dog.
– Joker in NC mountains lets dog off leash near John’s Rock. Dog falls off cliff.
– Neighbor lets pug puppy run loose. Dog run over by car.
Back to the topic at hand, the type of anti-social rage behavior exhibited here by Amy Cooper is so very typical. I see it ALL the time. Complaining about a dog can and will trigger a foaming-at-the-mouth, apoplectic fit in many owners. It can, and has, trigger a murderous rage.
This news is just in a few minutes ago: Copper was charged by the Manhattan District Attorney for third degree falsely reporting an incident. She was arrested and released, arraignment is set for October 14, 2020.
A judge rules against the owner of a vicious dog while the parties are attending the hearing. The parties leave court when the hearing is over. After the parties arrive at their homes, the owner of the vicious dog got his gun, went over to the neighbors house, and opened fire, three people killed.
Scratch an owner of a dangerous dog, find a dangerous dog owner.
In today’s news: Amy Cooper was charged today with third degree false reporting an incident to the police.
It turns out that she made two separate phone calls to 911: The first phone call was made to report Threatening, and the second phone call was made to report Tried To Assault.
In today’s news, Amy Cooper sues former employer: https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/white-woman-who-called-911-black-man-last-year-central-n1268679
Bird watchers do not maim tens/hundreds of thousands per year. Unleashed dog owners do.
In today’s news, Amy Cooper says: “He’s holding these dog treats in one hand and a bike helmet in his other hand, and I’m thinking, ‘Oh, my God, is this guy going to lure my dog over and try to hit him with his bike helmet?'” she told podcaster Kmele Foster. “And if I end up over there, am I going to get hit by this bike helmet?”
She felt threatened by a bike helmet being held in his hand, with him standing there still?
Under the law, can a reasonable person, under the circumstances of this situation, claim fear of immediate harm? I am not a lawyer, but I am a reasonable person, so I don’t think so. She is obviously fabricating a false threat.