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Pitbull unleashed

Original post made by Concerned person, Valencia, on Oct 8, 2007

I just want to bring to your attention and the Pleasanton community an incident that just happened to me last Saturday. I was in front of my house doing some yard work with my sister in law who was watching my two little children.
A young man walked with his Pitbull dog unleashed. I requested him politely to put his dog on a leash. He ignored my request and answered to me with profanity.
I just want to bring this fact to you and our community. I do not want to wait until my children are mauled or severely injured to stop this type of irresponsible behavior. People should walk their dogs on a leash, more so if they have a vicious dog.
The members of our community should report this type of irresponsible behavior to the Animal Control Department of the Pleasanton Police by calling 931-5100 so that we avoid an attack to ourselves or our children. We have the social responsibility to act in order to avoid an irreparable physical injury or in the worst case scenario losing a dear member of our family.

Comments (61)

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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Oct 8, 2007 at 3:52 pm

Seriously, folks with dogs need to keep them on a leash. Even if you think your dog is safe, the other person doesn't know you and your dog. I can't tell you how many times I've been out walking or riding my bike with my toddler and passed by responsible-looking adults with their unleashed dog, yes in Pleasanton parks and trails where leash law is in full effect.


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Posted by Robbie
a resident of Amador Estates
on Oct 9, 2007 at 4:27 am

Your right, all dogs should be on a leash wether you feel it is safe or not...its just a responcibility. But that lady, is the problem here, not pitbulls. first of all, you mention "Pitbull dog" but do you even know for sure this was a pitbull? do you know the distinct variations or diff. between say a mastif or a mixed terrier? but even worse, just because you "thought" it was a pitbull doesnt mean rabid crazed dogs are going to start running through your little community mauling or severely injuring people. with all due respect your comment here is stupid. you thought you saw a muscular dog and heaven for bid he wasnt leashed so you saw it as your perfect oppertunity to jump the ban wagon of blaming the breed of a dog instead of the actions of its owner. with all this mike vick attention you must be the talk of the town...ill bet youve told this story of a vicious pitbull who threatened you little children in your front yard over and over. maybe you should spend more time learning about what it is your discussing. you know nothing about real american pitbull terrier.


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Posted by Another concerned resident
a resident of another community
on Oct 9, 2007 at 6:58 am

And you know nothing about writing coherent sentences with correct grammar and word spellings, Robbie. The lady never stated any of which you accuse her in your rambling tirade.


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Posted by wayne
a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Oct 9, 2007 at 6:59 am

i agree ALL dogs should be leashed, even little 5 lb dogs. i cant tell you how many time i have walked my APBT mix and colie mix and have had dogs run up and bark at us or try to start a fight. the thing that gets me is the owners think its funny and cute becaue i have what they call a PITbull and there little yorkie is so cute running off leash to start a fight. iu am a responisble dog owener that is becoming very tired of the public outlook on pit bulls (the term pitbull isint even a dog breed) is so incrediblt far off that its quite sad. only 50 yeras ago this was americas favorite breed of dog, but somehow society has morphed them into these killer psycho dogs that attack anything.


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Posted by Jen
a resident of Canyon Creek
on Oct 9, 2007 at 7:21 am

i agree about the leash statements, but the rules need to be applied to EVERY breed of dogs. I am the owner of two large german shepherds that can be very intimadating at times. But every time i go to the dog parks, here or in san ramon, i obey the rules and use the "big dog" side.... and every single time somebody let's in a small dog. Unfortuntely my dogs are natural herders and dominant in personality, when they go to investigate the little one... the little dog freaks out and attacks my dog. My female GSD has been bitten in the face several times, and unfortuntely her natural instinct is to protect herself and bite back. Yes, i will admit that my dog does do some damage..but is she really to blame?


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Posted by Sandy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 9, 2007 at 9:18 am

It's not a responsibility, it's not a courtesy - it's the LAW!

Leash Laws
Like most communities, Pleasanton does have a leash law covered under 7.16.010 of the Pleasanton Municipal Code.

No owner or keeper of a dog shall allow or permit the dog to be or run at large in or upon any public place or premises, or in or upon any private place or premises other than those of the owner or keeper except with the consent of the person in charge of the private place or premises, unless such dog is securely restrained by a substantial leash not to exceed six feet in length and is in the charge and control of a person competent to keep such dog under effective charge and control.

The reason for having leash laws is for the safety of the dog, other animals, and the public. Unrestrained dogs may run into traffic, become involved in a dog fight, chase a pedestrian or bicyclist, jump on a small child or elderly person, or become involved in a dog bite. Leashed dogs are less likely to injure a person or another animal because they are under the control of their handler.

First time offenders can be given either a verbal warning from a police officer or Animal Services officer, be given a courtesy citation warning them of the violation, or be given a citation. Citations are handled according to the following schedule.


Fine amounts levied against dog owner or handler are as follows:
1st Offense $100.00
2nd Offense $200.00
3rd Offense $500.00
4th and Subsequent Offenses $750.00


Three or more violations in any 12-month period are handled as Misdemeanors through the Courts.

All reports of dogs being off a leash should be made to the main Police Department phone number at (925) 931-5100.





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Posted by Holly
a resident of another community
on Oct 9, 2007 at 10:35 am

Please don't blame a dog for its owners actions. By the way a PITBULL is not a breed of dog. It is a category of dogs. So before you label a dog please know it breed. It proudly was a beagle and you call it a Pitbull to get attention.


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Posted by monika
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 9, 2007 at 12:02 pm

if this had been any other kind of dog would you of asked that man to put his dog on a leash? I think not! just because it is a pitbull doesnt mean its going to eat your kids. i have a PitBull and it is the sweetest dog i have ever had. I hope all you people who think just Pitbulls attack your wrong i was attacked by a Lab but you dont hear people saying anything about tht. (Comment edited)


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Posted by ali
a resident of Dublin
on Oct 9, 2007 at 2:11 pm

I strongly support the author of this letter. I have 2 small children and constantly facing the challenge and danger of unleashed dogs running in the public parks and neigborhood. The law is there and I hope the public and police departments strictly apply the law! Give our children a safe place to live!


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Posted by Krystina
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 9, 2007 at 7:15 pm

"Please don't blame a dog for its owners actions."

What does this mean? That a dog who attacks because it is not secured on a leash is not under the responsibility of the owner? Of course it is. That is why the owner gets the fine, not the dog.

We have a right to own dogs and other pets. But along with this right comes the responsibility to make sure that our dog does not infringe on other people's rights and living. That means that someone's feeling of safety should not be compromised by a dog we own. As previously mentioned by another poster, even if you know that your dog is the sweetest puppy in the world, other people have no guarantee of this, and may feel unsafe around your dog.

A younger relative of mine refused to go to the park for at least a week after she was approached by a dog off its leash in the park. The dog was not in any way violent. It was just being friendly, but it is hard to convince a small child who has a fear of dogs that being chased by one is all in good fun.

The bottom line is, keeping your dog on a leash is the law. It may not be a necessary law for most dogs, but it is STILL a law. We need to respect this.


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Posted by Steve
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Oct 9, 2007 at 9:31 pm

Hey I've got an idea. If you want to let your dog run around without a leash, take it to a dog park. Pleasanton has a very nice dog park within Muirwood Park and as taxpayers, you're already paying for it, so go get your money's worth.

Sounds like that young man walking the dog needs more education on the law. Too bad he can't get an education in being courteous as well. If I talked to other people like that I think my dog would be the only one willing to talk to me.


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Posted by Mike
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Oct 10, 2007 at 4:10 pm

Walking a dog without a leash is like leaving a car without setting the parking break.


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Oct 10, 2007 at 4:41 pm

It seems like the police don't spend much time enforcing this law (I can't see how anyway). Just last night at the Sport's Park I passed by two owners with their medium to large sized dogs off the leash. One person just stood near their two jumping and playful dogs (as if they could catch hold of them if needed) while the other held onto the dog. They both held leashes in their hands but didn't have them in use.

Perhaps it would be effective to take photos of these owners and post them on a website. It would be perfectly legal as these people are in public locations.

Kudos to the owners out walking with their dogs on a leash or partaking in the free dog park!


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Posted by katee
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Oct 10, 2007 at 4:55 pm

I agree that ALL dogs should be leashed, especially at parks designed for children. My son was approached by a friendly but large dog when he was 4. He was licked in the face before his dad could get between them. My son, now 7, hates dogs because of this; even though the dog was "friendly," the sense of violation remains. So a child can be harmed psychologically by ANY dog that is not being controlled, even friendly, cute, "harmless" dogs.

Re the pit bull issue, some dog breeds were bred to herd. They like to nip at your heels. Some were bred to retrieve. They love to play fetch. Some were bred to hunt and chase. They are usually not good with cats or small animals. Some were bred to kill large predators. While an animal's personality is formed by the humans who train and hopefully love it, I do believe there is the seed of their breed within them and, since they are still animals, instinct or breeding can sometimes show itself no matter how well trained the dog.


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Posted by Rob
a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Oct 10, 2007 at 11:38 pm

I agree with what Robbie said. The person who posted this comment is implying that all pitbulls are vicious dogs, when this not the case. Also, he made a great point about knowing if the dog was even a pitbull. I've seen many mutts' that look like pits but don't have any in them. Pitbulls were breed as fighter dogs, but so where MANY other dogs. The thing today is that we always hear about pitbull rings and the media has created a nasty image of them. It all comes down to the owners. Pitbulls have been breed for over 200 years and came from Europe; bull dog and terrier. The amount of breeding that has taken place has taken out a good portion of there aggression. At the same time, there still are some pitbull mothers/fathers that are very aggressive and one would think that if they are mean, their offspring will be mean. We have a pitbull here- she has been around my nephew since he was born, she has been around my grandma that is 87 years old. She has even escaped out the gate, ran around the neighborhood smelling everything, then jumped into a car full of kids and just sat there like she was going for a ride (the kids in the car started laughing). If a dog is mean, blame the owner. And whoever said something about labs is absolutely right- if we heard all these stories about labs, we would grow to "hate" them too. For the 411, pitbulls aren't allowed at the majority of dog parks because of their image. So tax dollars aren't being spent right since all of the community is not being looked after.


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Posted by Cut through the crap
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2007 at 9:05 pm

If you see someone with a dog that is not on a leash, pull out your cell phone and call the police at (925) 931-5100. Demand that they come right then and address the situation.

Don't even try to talk to the owner. They will want to convince you that pitbulls aren't really dangerous, or that the dog isn't really a pitbull, or that the dog is just being friendly, or even more likely, to tell you to just f*#$ off.

It's a police matter. Plain and simple. And it should be, because almost every week you hear about someone (baby, little kid, Mom protecting her kid, lawn workers, postal workers, etc) being attacked by a dog. Who really cares what kind of dog? One thing is for sure. It was a dog NOT on a leash. The only sure way to pevent that from happening to someone in our community is to just simply call the police.


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Posted by Interested resident of
a resident of another community
on Oct 11, 2007 at 10:05 pm

Thank you Cut Through for cutting through the crap. You put it quite accurately and succinctly. I read all of these comments, one after another, about dog breed recognition inaccuracies, about don't blame the dog stuff, and various other assorted irrelevancies where the writers talk around the basic issue but never confront it....which is that dogs will bite and attack people. Small dogs and big dogs both. The big and/or powerful dogs are particularly dangerous. This is a common sense statement. Yes, dogs always have in the past bitten and attacked people and will continue to do so in the future. And you the owner is responsible since you are the enabler! Keep them on a leash! Not this leash in my hand but not attached stuff, either.


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Posted by Rob
a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Oct 12, 2007 at 10:44 am

Typical Pleasanton responses- making statements based on what they have seen on the news. Do some research about pitbulls before jumping to conclusions. Anybody with a real education knows how the media works- but many of you buy into. So many Pleasantonites are notorious for doing that. Here is some interesting facts about pitbulls from pitbulllovers.com:
Ten Facts About Pit Bulls Every One Should Know
1. Pit Bulls are commonly used as therapy dogs. Whether they are visiting a senior care facility or helping someone recover from an emotional accident, Pit Bulls are making a mark as outstanding therapy dogs.

2. Pit Bulls are used in Search and Rescue work. One example of well known SAR Pit Bulls is Kris Crawford and her dogs. Kris and her dogs have helped save the lives of many people during their efforts. Web Link

3. Pit Bulls serve as narcotic and bomb sniffing dogs. One Pit Bull, Popsicle (named that because he was found in an old freezer) has the largest recorded single drug find in Texas history. Read more about Popsicle here. Including how he found over 3,000 lbs of cocaine in Hildago, Texas.

4. Pit Bulls are great with kids. They weren't referred to as the "nanny's dog" for nothing that's for sure.

5. Pit Bulls are not human aggressive. The American Pit Bull Terrier as a breed is not human aggressive. In fact, quite the opposite is true of the breed. They are gentle and loving dogs. Like any dog individuals can be unsound and have behavior problems.

6. The Pit Bull was so popular in the early 1900's they were our mascot not only in World War One, but World War Two as well. They were featured on recruiting and propoganda posters during this time period.

7. Sgt. Stubby. A Pit Bull war hero. Stubby was wounded in action twice, he saved his entire platoon by warning them of a poison gas attack and he single handedly captured a German spy.

8. Pete the Pup on the orginal Little Rascals was a Pit Bull.

9. Pit Bulls score an 83.4% passing rate with the American Temperament Test Society. That's better than the popular Border Collie (a breed who scores 79.6%). View the ATTS stats here.

10. They are dogs not killing machines.

Not everyone tries to convince others' that pitbulls are safe- it's your own opinion. But making statements claiming "will convince you" is outrageous. Go read this webiste too for myths on pitublls. One of these days, a collie or some other popular "family" dog is going to do something bad and I pray that the news puts it on tv.


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Posted by Jen
a resident of Canyon Creek
on Oct 12, 2007 at 1:25 pm

Dear Interested:
you wrote "The big and/or powerful dogs are particularly dangerous. "

i hope my two german shepherd eat you...seriously take a big bite out of your head!

I agree pets out in public areas need to be on leashes, no matter their size ... but this is no where to be discriminating against certain breeds.

And the to the person who spoke of breed types: herding dogs, are just better at herding when TRAINED, if my GSDs got out in some farm they wouldn't automatically herd some sheep into a corral!.

Once an animal is "domesticated" and is no longer a "working" dog things change. That's like saying someone who with a known family trait/advantage/disadvantage can't change just because of their genes...

PS way to go Rob from Walnut Grove... i love my GSD but have a special place in my heart for pitbulls because the hatred towards them. its aweful when some one discriminates against a breed withouth knowning the animal... it make me think of 1950 when african americans had to use different faucets...


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Posted by Worried
a resident of Livermore
on Oct 12, 2007 at 1:33 pm

Web Link

Web Link


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Posted by J.T.
a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Oct 12, 2007 at 2:00 pm

I know someone whose dog was attacked by a pitbull-looking type of general category of dog, in Pleasanton. It ran out of it's house as she was walking her dog on the sidewalk. This was in the Walnut Grove Elementary School neighborhood. She was able to pull the aggressive dog off her dog. The police quarantined the dog because it didn't have all it's shots. It's now back with it's owners. She learned it had previously attacked a person. The police have done nothing else. That dog is still in that home, ready to run out and bite someone else.


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Posted by Resident with bite out of head
a resident of another community
on Oct 12, 2007 at 2:55 pm

Quote from Jen:

<<<you wrote "The big and/or powerful dogs are particularly dangerous. "

i hope my two german shepherd eat you...seriously take a big bite out of your head!>>>>>

Put this together with the other content from some of the dog defenders in this thread and you MUST agree that it is not just the dogs that are dangerous....It's their owners!

This subject clearly brings out the crazies!


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Oct 12, 2007 at 3:39 pm

Jen wrote:
"I agree pets out in public areas need to be on leashes, no matter their size ... but this is no where to be discriminating against certain breeds.
Once an animal is "domesticated" and is no longer a "working" dog things change. That's like saying someone who with a known family trait/advantage/disadvantage can't change just because of their genes..."

I find these comments highly naive. No one is saying a person or dog CAN'T change through training, but to deny the role genes play in the behavior of ANY animal (humans included!) is relativistic moral fluff. There is no longer a "nature vs. nurture" debate as recent genetic studies on this problem prove that behavior is formed by BOTH nature and nuture. Moreover, dogs have been subjected to breeding programs by humans for thousands of years _expressly for the purpose of such discrimination_ that Jen wishes to downplay. So comparing dogs breeds with human families is like comparing apples with oranges.

Rob wrote:
"The person who posted this comment is implying that all pitbulls are vicious dogs"

Who cares? Your arguments are a distraction from the real issue. ALL dogs out in public need to be on a leash, as the original poster stated. It is the law. Even pitbulls serving as sniffer dogs are on leashes.


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Posted by Rob
a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Oct 12, 2007 at 4:48 pm

Lol Stacey are you serious? If someone, meaning some type of police force, is using a pitbull as a "sniffer"- how you put it- they more than likely will be off the leash at some point. If one is going through a wooded area, keeping them on the leash will only shorten the distance as to what the dog can smell. Learn some sense when it comes to this. And my comment isn't a distraction. I agree 100% that dogs should be on leashes. I then went on to state my opinion about dogs and how people form negative opinions about certain breeds based on what they saw on the television. If you say my comment is a distraction, so is everyone elses' that have commented similarly to me. Better yet, go back and find where I said "dogs shouldn't be on leashes." You won't cause I never said that. And the pit that got out in the Walnut Groove neighborhood isn't mine. She has gotten out but is not human aggressive. More than anything, she would lick the crap out of you.


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Posted by Still stepping in dog crap
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2007 at 5:02 pm

Ten Facts About Pit Bulls ...THAT ARE TOTALLY IRRELEVANT

Who cares about any given breed? That is not the point.

The point is that ALL dogs should be on a leash. No one, including the owner, knows whether any given dog, no matter what breed or size, will "bother" (attack, intimidate, scare, annoy, confuse, or even kil) a person or another animal.

What constitues being "bothered" is in the mine of the beholder. Period. What to some dog owner might be cute, friendly behavior on the part of his/her dog could very well create terror in someone else. (read the posts above - don't look down on the people who are scared of dogs - don't call them sissies - don't act the bully yourself - just take their commetns at face value - they were SCARED by some dog's behavior.)

This is why there is a leash law. Like other laws, people shouldn't have to or be encouraged to take the law into their own hands. Don't get in some dog owner's face about their lawbreaking ways. Just pick up your cell phone and call the police. The police will come and warn the person. The next time they will ticket them. Eventually the dog owner will either get the message or lose the dog.

And the streets will be a litle cleaner!

p.s. Yes, I do have a dog. I use a leash, and I even clean up after it as I walk it. It is a small dog, but it has a good size bark. No, it has never bitten anyone. I have actually seen kids shrink from it even while on a leash - I could not then nor can I now understand why they would hae been scared of my little old dog. But I do accept that it would have been much worse FOR THEM if my dog was not on a leash.


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Posted by Rob
a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Oct 12, 2007 at 5:31 pm

Well who cars about your tiny dog then? I don't understand where readers forget about what they read. The person that started this post claimed " just want to bring this fact to you and our community. I do not want to wait until my children are mauled or severely injured to stop this type of irresponsible behavior. People should walk their dogs on a leash, more so if they have a vicious dog." My comments were in response to the vicious comment, which I'm entitled to. But since you took it to the "who cares" level, then who cares about your experiences? My facts I posted are only to let people know that they are not bad as people think. The world isn't perfect and I don't expect every single person to like them. But maybe the facts I posted could shed some light on myths people believe. AGAIN, I have never said one thing about leashes being bad. I stand by police officers that write tickets for dogs being off the leash. And that is the point- well there are many points in the first person's post. Which is why I responded.


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Posted by Resident with bite out of head from Jens dog
a resident of another community
on Oct 12, 2007 at 6:37 pm

Like I said.... Love me, love my dog. Or else!!!

Rob and Jen.


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Posted by Kelsey
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2007 at 7:19 pm

It seems that there are two conversations going on here--one about keeping your dog (any dog) on a leash, and one about pit bulls and how they are being unfairly attacked.

Here are my two cents:

1. ALL DOGS should be kept on leashes. I totally stand behind that law. It keeps us safe, and it keeps us feeling safe.

2. I thought the comment that if you see a dog off its leash you should call the police ASAP. I think that's a little ridiculous. First of all, that isn't going to make you many friends (with the owner or the cops). Second of all, most dog owners I know who let their dogs off the leash at the park only do so because they are not aware it is bothering others. If you are uncomfortable with the dog, or there is a child that is frightened, most owners would be more than willing to put on the leash on the dog if you ask nicely. If they do tell you to #$%* off, then its ok to call the police. After all, they are in violation of a law and it is affecting you. But don't play helpless and call the cops because you have such little faith in the human race, or you don't think its your job to look out for yourself. Try and work it out yourself first and see what happens from there. But again, you will avoid much embarrasment and animosity if you speak to the owner yourself. As a dog owner, I would certainly put my dog on its leash if someone asked me to and said the dog was making them/their child uncomfortable. But I would be pissed and embarassed if all of the sudden without warning the cops were involved with something I would have done if someone had just said something. Wouldn't you be?

3. Although the original post mentioned a pit bull, it seems many of you are missing the point. Whether or not pit bulls are well behaved is not the issue. I'm pretty sure that the author was not meaning to attack a breed of dog. She was merely stating that a dog had made her uncomfortable, and it *happened* to be a pit bull. She could have easily had the same experience with another kind of dog.


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Posted by Resident with head bit off by both of Jen's dogs
a resident of another community
on Oct 12, 2007 at 8:19 pm

Kelsey, thank you for your attempt for a considerate post. You start out reasonably agreeing with the leash law, as do others in your camp. But shortly after you fall into the same mind-set as the rest of the dog owners, which is summarized best by your own words: "If you are uncomfortable with the dog, or there is a child that is frightened, most owners would be more than willing to put on the leash on the dog if you ask nicely. " ASK NICELY! You put the responsibility on the victim to solve the problem that you the dog owner create by not obeying the law.

We don't buy that. Never will. All of you dog owners can try to defend your behavior as well as the behavior of the serious transgressors, but we don't buy it, especially when all of your arguments put the burden back on us! Simply obey the leash law.
Don't defend its violation. Agree?


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Posted by Concerned person who wrote the first comment
a resident of Valencia
on Oct 12, 2007 at 9:03 pm

I am not an expert on dog breeds, and really I appreciate all the efforts of various readers to try to educate me on this matter. It was not my intention to offend people that have pitbulls. The dog that I saw did not attacked me or my children- nothing happened to me and I am very grateful for that- I did asked the owner NICELY to put the dog on a leash and he was very aggressive. Hey people this is not a matter of discriminating against dogs. I really do not care about what breed of dog you have, I am more concerned about the irresponsible behaviour of owners. Just have your dogs on a leash. Thank you for the comments supporting my main concern NOT COMPLIANCE WITH THE LAW.


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Oct 12, 2007 at 9:37 pm

Maybe the title should have been "Dog Owners Unleashed". Dogs reflect their owners.


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Posted by Concerned person
a resident of Valencia
on Oct 12, 2007 at 11:24 pm

Hey Rob here is a website that can give you a little explanation on the meaning of the word vicious. It is MY OPINION that pitbulls are vicious dogs based on actual statistics.

Web Link

On another note, I am highly educated.


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Posted by Kelsey is full of crap
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 13, 2007 at 8:03 am

Kelsey (annd all other dog owners)-

If you have read all of the above, then consider yourself asked nicely, for once and for all time, please, pretty please, comply with the law and put your dog (whatever kind you have) on a leash whenever it is not in your house or your yard or a designated let the dog run free park.

As Stacey said..."Even if you think your dog is safe, the other person doesn't know you and your dog."

As Wayne said..."i cant tell you how many time i have walked my APBT mix and colie mix and have had dogs run up and bark at us or try to start a fight. the thing that gets me is the owners think its funny and cute"

As Jen said..."the little dog freaks out and attacks my dog. My female GSD has been bitten in the face several times"

As Monika said..."i was ttacked by a Lab"

As Ali said..."I have 2 small children and constantly facing the challenge and danger of unleashed dogs running in the public parks and neigborhood. "

As Krystina said..."even if you know that your dog is the sweetest puppy in the world, other people have no guarantee of this, and may feel unsafe around your dog. A younger relative of mine refused to go to the park for at least a week after she was approached by a dog off its leash in the park. The dog was not in any way violent. It was just being friendly, but it is hard to convince a small child who has a fear of dogs that being chased by one is all in good fun."

As Katee said..."My son was approached by a friendly but large dog when he was 4. He was licked in the face before his dad could get between them. My son, now 7, hates dogs because of this; even though the dog was "friendly," the sense of violation remains. So a child can be harmed psychologically by ANY dog that is not being controlled, even friendly, cute, "harmless" dogs."

AND ON AND ON AND ON...

How in the world can you put the burden on the rest of the world to ask you to follow a simple, justified, rationale law? Who are you? Why doesn't the law apply to you in the first place. Are you that arrogant that the law is for everyone else but you? And if you are that kind of a person, why would anyone care that you are not going to be their friend if they call the police on a lawbreaker? What are you going to do to them? Sic your dog on them? And if you are going to be mad at them for calling the police for you not folowing the law in the first place when you know full well what it is - simply because you don't feel like it - what's to stop you from taking offense at their request? What if they don't ask you nicely enough? How are they going to get close enough to ask you nicely without coming even closer to the dog they don't want unleashed in the first place? So if they shout from a distance for you to leash your dog, how are you going to interpret that? And exactly what kind of a person ignores the law with a wanton disregard for his responsibility and total lack of consideration for others, but then cheerfully accepts a shouted out suggestion to obey that law and leash their dog? Or is it more likely that the arrogant ass ignoring the law and disrespecting the community will take offense and get mad, and then what? Or even worse, will you try and show the person how friendly your dog is and how it wouldn't hurt a flea, and how the law shouldn't apply to you and YOUR dog?

Get a life. Leash your dog.

And if anyone sees you with your dog unleashed, they should turn the other way and call the police. Maybe after you try and explain yourself to the police a few times, you'll get the message, which you obviously haven't gotten from the postings above.


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Posted by Janet
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 13, 2007 at 4:18 pm

I have been with my kids in park/playgrounds in Pleasanton when an unleased dog has run up to them. Once the dog ran straight at my child barking aggressively. Other times, there was on barking, but the running straight to my child scared them very much. They're little kids, and they don't know your dog, and whether it is friendly or not. I wish people would keep their dogs on leashes as they are supposed to do in our parks. People usually say, "I'm sorry! He's friendly!" But it's too late, you've already given my kid a heart attack when we're were supposed to be having fun at the park. 'Sorry' doesn't make up for it, put your dog on a leash.


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Posted by Resident without a head
a resident of another community
on Oct 13, 2007 at 6:35 pm

Don't you dog nuts yet get the message? Is not this last post from Janet clear enough? Not crystal yet? But don't say anything to Jen or she will send both of her German shepherds to bite your head off. Happened to me (yet she says she supports leash laws).


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Posted by Kelsey
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 13, 2007 at 9:43 pm

It seems that I have been misunderstood. I NEVER SAID that I let my dog off its leash. In fact, I DON'T own a dog, and never have. But I DO have children who have been frightened by unleashed dogs, much like Krystina. I was merely trying to see the issue from the other point of view. You might have missed my point #1, which was

1. ALL DOGS should be kept on leashes. I totally stand behind that law. It keeps us safe, and it keeps us feeling safe.

I was just trying to point out that the reason people let their dog off the leash is because they don't think it is bothering anyone, but if they knew it did, they would put the leash on no questions asked. People just aren't thinking when they let their dogs off the leash.

But I submit to you the fact that by the time the cops get there, you could have single handedly put all the dogs in the entire sports park back on their leashes yourself. Asking gets the problem solved more quickly and efficiently--isn't that what we are going for? It will still make owners think twice before they let their dogs off the leash again. Actually, if you aren't into the "ask nicely" thing, then fine. Just say "Hey, keeping your dog leashed is the law, you know." Then if they don't care, by all means, call the SWAT team.


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Posted by Adelaide
a resident of another community
on Oct 13, 2007 at 11:54 pm

I think what Kelsey is getting at is that when Animal Control (or officer if Animal Control isn't available) arrives, they will most likely ask you if you said anything to the dog owner. If you didn't, then you will come off sounding like you are too far above it to say something yourself. It will give you more credibility, and whatever authority is handling the situation will be more inclined to be on your side if you say, "I told the owner that leashing was the law, but they ignored me," than if you say, "No, I didn't say anything...isn't that YOUR job?" Although it isn't wrong, per se, it will not make the officer inclined in your favor.

Although, Kelsey, I doubt the SWAT team will ever show :-)


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Posted by Paul
a resident of Val Vista
on Oct 14, 2007 at 8:42 am

I've been taking my 2 kids and my oldest son before that on bike rides along the canal trail and often see people walk their 'nice pets' without leashes. The law says, walk your dog WITH a leash. What's not to understand.

The one day that one of these 'nice pets' bites my one of my young children, or me, it'll be the owner that I go after, right after I deal with their 'nice pet' and it won't be through the courts.


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Oct 14, 2007 at 1:56 pm

Yet another example of a dog off the leash: Web Link

Note the owner was asked multiple times to put the dog on the leash before the attack. Walking around with a dog off the leash is like walking around with a loaded gun with the safety off.


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Posted by Interested resident
a resident of another community
on Oct 14, 2007 at 8:21 pm

Adelaide, if what you say would be truly the case, then all officers involved ought to be fired. How could we as taxpaying citizens put up with officers who would grill the complaintant and implicitly put a burden on him/her for enforcing the law they are hired to enforce? I just don't buy your point being valid.


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Posted by Jen
a resident of Canyon Creek
on Oct 15, 2007 at 7:20 am

Again i support leash laws FOR ALL DOGS!!!

Do you think any one would call the police if an unleashed Yorkie was running around? probably not...


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Oct 15, 2007 at 7:43 am

Ever seen the Dog Whisperer show? That guy was actually in Pleasanton about a year ago. As anyone who has seen the show knows, dog problems are really owner problems, a topic some writers here have touched briefly upon.

From Web Link:
"Owners need to understand the basic psychological needs of their dog: exercise, discipline and affection, in that order," said Menise. "When folks treat their dogs like human members of the family, problems arise. We have to see our dogs as animals first."
"Many times it is the quirky habits of the human owners that Millan has to change to restore balance and harmony."


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Posted by Patricia
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Oct 15, 2007 at 5:23 pm

Goodness. I have to admit that, when I read the first post, I thought the writer was right about the leash issue though possibly jumping to conclusions about that particular dog being vicious based on media hype etc. I also thought that, while the dog should have been leashed, the young man who owned it deserved to be muzzled for his rude response. After reading the uncivil discourse that followed, I guess more leashes and muzzles are in order all around.

1) Leash your dog and clean up after it.
2) Communicate politely with your neighbors and fellow citizens

There. Is that so hard?


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Posted by Rob
a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Oct 15, 2007 at 6:14 pm

Lol, this has been quite a little chat. Kind of fun to see everyone's ideas/opinions. The weekly should write an article about dogs, leash laws etc. Or maybe host a dog party in one of the larger parks, where people can bring there dogs, let them off leash if they feel comfortable, and have lots of informtaion available to the public. And to the person who left the link for the pitbulls page thing, all that is implying is that ALL pitbulls are mean and aggressive. I guess you still don't get that proper training, exercising, attention etc, is a must for these dogs- as I have already stated that it's the owners responibility for their own dogs behavior. yes pitbulls can be mean, but train them right, give them attention and love and they can be a great breed of dog. Pracitcally any domestic breed of dog can be trained right to behave properlly- if people do these things and give all dogs a chance, then none of these events have to happen (meaning the dog attacks).


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Posted by Isabel
a resident of Downtown
on Oct 16, 2007 at 9:13 am

I agree - the Pleasanton Weekly should include an article about dogs, laws and dog owners in it's next edition. Firstly, I can appreciate the feelings of responsible dog owners who deal with unfriendly Pleasantonians when they're out walking around town. Dogs can be great companions and many are also safe, fun pets for children. However, any resident especially a parent of young children has every right to be concerned and insist that leash laws be adhered to when faced with an iresponsible and may I add, verbally abusive, dog owner who chooses to ignore the law. I will admit the concerned resident may not have called the police if the dog in question had been a chihuahua. However mix a large, unleashed dog with a rude, confrontational owner and you better believe most residents would have called the cops.
(P.S. To Jen in Canyon Creek- Please do not compare animal issues with the struggle of any ethnic group. It is an insult to your intelligence and to the millions of HUMANS who suffer discrimination, pain and even death).


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Posted by Todd
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 16, 2007 at 1:07 pm

Isabel: where was the ethnic comment? I read a family trait/advantage/disadvantage in Jen's comment. Nothing about Ethnic backgrounds.

I've read that Jen's main point is that larger breed dogs are scruntized more than smaller breeds.


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Posted by Isabel
a resident of Downtown
on Oct 16, 2007 at 6:24 pm

Todd,
I was referring to Jen's statement, "its aweful when some one discriminates against a breed withouth knowning the animal... it make me think of 1950 when african americans had to use different faucets..."



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Posted by Sara
a resident of Dublin
on Oct 17, 2007 at 9:48 am

I have a German Shepard mix and we keep her on a leash, just so she won't scare little kids or people. Why would you even want to do scare people lik that by not keeping a dog on a leash? I can't believe there are so many inconsiderate people in this area who are fighting about the breed when they SHOULD be agreeing with the law and basic consideration, especially towards little kids. It frightens me.
There are a few dog parks, I know of one in Pleasanton and one in Dublin. That's a great place for you to take your dog if you don't want to leash them. What is the big deal with leashing them anyway?
A few months ago a child got attacked by a wandering dog in a Dublin neighborhood. I won't mention the breed bcs a lot of people might jump down my throat. Does it matter the breed or the fact that a child is hurt bcs of someones carelessness?


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Posted by Rob
a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Oct 17, 2007 at 8:00 pm

The whole thing about the breed is because the main title of this post is Pitbull unleashed. The dog could have been another breed and the whole talk is to defend animals that can't defend themselves. Also, points were made about how owners neglect there dogs, which causes them to be mean. Not all animals act in a harmful way, even if it is a pitbull. Go watch animal planet, the Animal Cops show I think, and almost everytime there are pitbulls that were not feed right or were trained to fight.


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Posted by Danny
a resident of Verona
on Oct 24, 2007 at 2:33 pm

While I can certainly understand the concern for unleashed dogs, both for the dog's safety and people, you must understand this. Pit Bulls are not viscious child attacking dogs. You have been played by the media who has often depicted them in a bad light for sensationalism. Once known as "THE NANNY DOG" because of how wonderful these dog are with children, it could not be more a myth that the Stafforshire Terrier (close relative of the Pit Bull) made the best of family pets and still do. Though some may be prone to dog aggression, this does not make them child killer or even dog killers. The problem with what you hear in the media is because of negligent people not the Pit Bulls and you should be far more afraid of them and teach your children to be far more cautious of people than dogs. Human beings are the most dangerous and violent species on the planet.


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Posted by Kurt Kummer
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Oct 26, 2007 at 1:36 pm

Just a quick note to let you all know that the City will most likely include new dog parks on the Bernal Park and the Staples Ranch Park. Hopefully these will let more folks have a convenient place to let their dogs run and play off-leash. By the way, if you haven't tried the dog excercise area at Muirwood Park, you should give it a try. There are two areas, one for small dogs at the North end, and one for all-sizes to the South. If you have any suggestions for new dogparks, please come to the Parks and Recreation Commission meetings -- second Thursday of every month at City Council chambers.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Bobo
a resident of Birdland
on Oct 27, 2007 at 11:21 am

Pitbulls, Harleys, Raiders, Guns, Insecurity at its finest.


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Posted by Dave
a resident of Stoneridge Park
on Nov 6, 2007 at 6:22 pm

I own an American Brittany hunting dog. He wears an orange color and responds to a whisle. I have spent $3000,00 dollars teaching this dog to obey- I realize all of the laws are in place for good reasons, however, I often let my dog off leash when we are in the middle of a part together. He needs to run and a leash does not do it. I am not making excuses for my behavior, I know it is deemed wrong, also, my wife doesn't like that I do it either.

I guess the only thing that bugs me is that in Pleasanton, we have become so uptight, that we can get shook up over any type of do beign off leash.

Some dogs (not pit bulls) do not have it in their nature to attack and are freindly, it is sad that those who have dangerous dogs are not willing to understand the breed enough to keep them on leash. Because of this, we assume that all dogs must stay on leash.

Like may processes in the work place, since many employees lack common sense, let's "dumb down" every process so that no one can mess up.


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Posted by Shelley
a resident of Downtown
on Nov 7, 2007 at 12:08 pm

I've walked a Brittany several times. Wait, let me correct that, I walked and the Brittany ran around in circles, tethered by a leash. This particular Brittany is the most personable dog I have ever met (he seriously has a personality!), but I would never let this dog off a leash while walking. He's broken a couple leashes already with the sheer excitement of running around outside. I realize this thing was bred to run and run and run, but still, we keep it on a leash while walking. Even though you spent $3k to train it, you are still being irresponsible by unleashing it in parks where it is clearly signed that you must keep your dog on a leash. And this is not only in Pleasanton, other cities have these types of laws as well.


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Posted by Dave
a resident of Stoneridge Park
on Nov 7, 2007 at 6:46 pm

I get it- I have read every post.

* Don't have a dog off leash, any dog, anytime. I will check any level of common sense at the door, or as I enter the city limits. No discernment necessary. Just follow the rules. 1 pound tea cup poodle or 75 pound pitbull. Same rule for all.


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Posted by frank
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Nov 7, 2007 at 7:46 pm

Hey Dave, I think you have already checked your common sense at the door.

Go read: Web Link Then step back and ask yourself whether what is said in these 15 different items is just a bunch of BS. Should people in Pleasanton and who may be using its parks be aware of point 8 regarding "Become a dedicated student of 'Dog Body Language' " and the reasons behind it? Like the mother walking her 2 year old in a stroller when Fido runs up as you stand there smiling with leash in hand?

Someone wrote they spent $3500 to train her dog and implied that, having spent this money, she should be able to run her dog in Pleasanton parks. If she has so much money to spend on these things, why not go elsewhere and run Fido? Why Pleasanton parks, which after all, were built for people, not dogs? Go to a dog park somewhere. Spend some gas money to drive there. Or, go out in the non-incorporated areas and run your dog on some rancher's property. Go to other communities who have parks (Livermore, Dublin, San Ramon), or to the Bay Area's parks. Oh, can't do that because they have the same leash laws. Instead, Dave's common sense says to him to violate his own town's leash laws, since that's more convenient for him I suppose. I think that's what he really means.

Another quote from: Web Link

"Perplexing is one adjective to describe the rules and regulations that restrict and allow dogs on trails and in parks. Most of the Bay Area dog hikes are in areas that share space with human hikers, bicyclists, and other animals. Consequently, some of the hikes and parks prohibit access to dogs to prevent their mixing with other people, other animals, and to minimize impact on the environment. That being said, there are plenty of dog-friendly jaunts that are under leash or voice command control where your pooch is welcome. Surprise, surprise, there are even some places that allow your dog to go off-leash. "

This article goes on to name some parks with links to their websites, where dog rules can be viewed. I suppose that the no leash advocates in this blog are already aware of how restricted the Bay Area parks are regarding their dogs, so their "common sense" says to run them leash-less in Pleasanton parks. Here they can get away with it!


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Posted by AL
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Nov 7, 2007 at 8:43 pm

I have absolutely nothing against pitbulls, or any dog for that matter. However, I do feel that they ALL need to be leashed when out in public.

I have noticed one thing. It seems that owners of certain breeds of dogs seem to match up with stereotypes exactly. Maybe it is just a coincidence, but every person I have met with a pitbull seems to be a very combative person. Maybe it is just a reflection of education level. This is really sad because if they want pitbulls to be viewed as nice pets, they themselves might consider behaving in a classy manner.

In the meantime, I will continue to have an open mind about all dogs. I will also continue to call the police if I see a dog off it's leash around me.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by unclehomerr..
a resident of Downtown
on Nov 7, 2007 at 9:23 pm

Why don't y'all just carry a stick with a nail in the end.. then, you can keep the unleashed dogs away from your kids and clean up the parks at the same time.


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Posted by Dave
a resident of Stoneridge Park
on Nov 8, 2007 at 8:44 pm

Frank,

I know you are correct and reasonable in your views. I know that it is a lost arguement, in truth, I have double standards. I do not mind wihen my neighbors let their Jack Russel run around without a leash, I assume he can't really hurt anyone. However, I get really mad if I ever see a more agressive dog off leash ie Doberman, Rot Weiler, Pit Bull, Shepard. I don't really mind when a guy is throwing a ball to his well trained Pointer, retreiver, hound, setter, etc.

I know that it is unfair for average joe to understand the difference in breeds, and, I would assume that ever so often one of the "nice breeds' attacks someone also.

I will back off and shut up.

BTW, I was the onethat spent all of the money on training my dog, he is quite the hunter. i can blow my wistle and he will stop on a dime. I am proud of him and he is very happy when he can run around, but I get it, i will try and keep him on leash, my wife will be happier, she always tells be that one day something will happen.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Chol
a resident of Livermore
on Dec 2, 2007 at 12:56 pm

Offer the dog and his owner a poisoned meatball sandwich...


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Birdland
on Jan 6, 2008 at 2:26 pm

Question -- would the "Concerned" poster have asked the dog be leashed if it were a Lab? Or Golden Retriever?

FYI -- I share my home with a breed many designate as "aggressive." None of my dogs have ever shown aggressive behavior. However, I leash them whenever I walk them to ensure I have a "whip" to use against other small, unleashed dogs -- as well as a method of encouraging humans to not approach my dogs after being told I do not want them petted.

I also walk my dogs with a bag of ground pepper in my pocket. Nothing works better at discouraging a menancing dog than a handful of ground pepper thrown in the face. Easier to use than mace.


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