Target vandals not dogs and their owners

ONCE again poor dogs and owners are getting into trouble. What dreadful deed set this discussion off? I walk my two dogs every day, mostly at the Riverside Park. I have yet to see faeces, except maybe in the rough grass area. When it rains, it will be was

ONCE again poor dogs and owners are getting into trouble. What dreadful deed set this discussion off?

I walk my two dogs every day, mostly at the Riverside Park. I have yet to see faeces, except maybe in the rough grass area. When it rains, it will be washed away - unlike the cans, bottles, plastic food containers and plastic bags.

Our council workmen do a wonderful job picking up everything that people should have taken home with them. There are also waste bins provided. But these untidy morons do not have enough brains to realise why those big bins are there - except to try to tip over or set fire to.

If someone is worried their children might fall into dog mess and have to wash it off, think yourselves lucky. I wish my two dogs had got off with mess on their paws: just to wash it off would have been so easy.

No, they have both walked on broken glass. The big one cut an artery and only because of prompt action by me, a quick drive to the vet and two operations later did she survive, though with a limp. The other was badly cut on her pad. This is not something I would like to happen to a child. Do people get pleasure from smashing bottles?

Forget poor dogs. Let's target these mindless people who broke down three kissing-gates in the meadow, plus the stile, letting the cows out and panicking the poor things.

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Perhaps the planned notice for Riverside Park should read: "All the people who use this park should treat it with respect" (and explain what that means).

I suggest penalties should include £10 for dog mess, £1,000 or six months for broken glass, and for vandalism six months' community work repairing the mindless damage.

Mrs YVONNE ATHERFOLD, Ouse Road, Eaton Ford

* I HAVE been a dog (Rottweiler) owner for 21 years and I appreciate the open spaces around us in Brampton. What I do not appreciate is dog owners who let their dogs off the lead and in most cases can't control their dogs.

I have had lots of unpleasant experiences. I keep my Rottweiler on the lead, although he is of a lovely nature, but he is still a big dog and strong.

I find it very stressful to hold him, when all kind of dogs of all sizes run towards us and I have to hold back my dog. In my opinion, it does not matter what kind or what size of dog it is but, in parks especially, people should not be allowed to let their dogs off. These dog owners should be charged a fine on the spot.

So, let the dog owners walk their dogs on any open spaces, but make it clear that they have to have their dogs on the lead - no matter what size they are.

INGRID McGREGOR, Grove Lane, Brampton

* I AM one of the dog-walkers and I always pick up my dogs' mess. If everybody picked up what their dog did, there would not be a problem.

I saw a woman with two dogs watching what they were doing. As it was obvious to me that she wasn't going to pick up, I offered her some bags. "Oh, I don't bother with picking up," she said. Obviously, her dogs' mess wasn't a problem.

What about what we have to put up with - smashed beer bottles on all the paths, beer cans and chip papers everywhere? And crossing the bridge we are abused by men on cycles on their way to work. They come up behind you (no bell) and expect you to jump out of their way. It's worse when it's dark because they have no lights either.

If you ask the park cleaners to clear up the glass, they ignore you.

Mrs A TOKENS, Ferrars Avenue, Eynesbury

* IN your article a Kennel Club spokesman is quoted as saying: "I don't see why, if dog owners act responsibly, they can't use the parks." The fact is that, while most do, a lot don't.

We often see owners cutting across the two football pitches at Huntingdon Riverside Park, with their dog miles behind. They have absolutely no idea that their dogs have fouled the pitches. The dogs should be kept on a lead and walked around the outside edge of the park.

Designated dog walks and more dog litter bins would be helpful.

TOM and LYNDA STANHOPE, Hartford Road, Huntingdon

* HAS the world gone mad? Clear up after your dogs, yes, I agree. Keep them on a lead when children are about, yes, I agree. Banning them from public places - how ridiculous is that?

Dogs bring a lot of joy to people and the exercise is good too. I wonder when we will be seeing the headlines "Children to be banned from open spaces" (too noisy) or "Senior citizens banned from open space" (spending too long on the benches).

I do not own a dog, but I enjoy our open spaces around Huntingdon as much as they do.

PAT MILNE, Falcon Drive, Hartford

* HUNTINGDONSHIRE District Council obviously hasn't anything better to do than concern itself yet again with dogs and their owners.

What a load of tripe banning them from parks. Everyone is entitled to go to a park, and that includes your dog. It's common sense - or should be - that they need to be off a lead to have freedom to exercise. If they are under control and owners clear up after them, please tell me why this is such a big problem.

HAZEL HAWES, The Fellowes, Little Raveley