Tag: leash laws

Pet Sitter Bum Rushed By Unleashed Dog

There is never a dull moment while pet sitting in Mesa, AZ.  We have a dog that we walk 3 times a week for the past 3 years.  Today was the first time we had ever been rushed by another dog.  Here is the scenario:

It’s hot, so I had the client’s dog swim in their pool for a good 10 minutes before we headed out for a short walk in the neighborhood.  We’ve been walking in this neighborhood, the same route, for about a year.  (Family moved since we started walking their dog).  Every time we walk, we walk by a house that has a large dog that barks at us through the window.  I never thought anything of it before…we just keep walking by and I keep my client’s dog attention away from the house so he doesn’t get all heated.

Today, however, proved to be a different experience.  As we walked by the house, we could hear the dog barking at us like normal.  But this time, the dog darted out the front door and rushed us.  As far as I could tell, the front door was open and the screen door was “closed”.  Or so we thought.  It seems that the screen door may not have been latched.  This dog was already heated when he darted out the front door at us.  He charged my client’s dog…I tried my best to stay composed and tell the other dog “No.”  I yelled at the dog and pulled my client’s dog away…trying to keep the other dog from sinking his teeth into my client’s dog.  Thankfully, the pet owner’s were home and the male came out running out of the house to get his dog.  By this time the two dogs were heavily mouthing each other and the unleashed dog would not back down.  As the pet owner tried unsuccessfully to grab his dog, I loudly said, “Grab his back legs, grab his back legs, grab his back legs.”  The owner finally was able to grab his dogs back legs and pull him to the ground long enough for us to walk out of sight.  I would have kept going, but I lost my shoes and sunglasses in the tussle.

As I waited for the owners to get their dog safely into their house I checked my client’s dog over to make sure there was no damage and assess the situation.  Thankfully, my client’s dog was not hurt.  The other dog owner grabbed my shoes and sunglasses, apologized profusely and said his dog has never done anything like that before, he is normally such a sweet friendly dog.  It’s clear that when his dog (or any dog)  is already heated he is a different dog.

We continued on a very short walk (mostly so I could calm down before taking him home), then went home to tell mom and dad what had happened.  I think I was more shook up than my client’s dog.

Moral of the story…please keep your dog secure at all times.  If anything had happened to my client’s dog, the burden would have fallen on the unleashed dog owner because he did not have his dog under control.

I am fine…my client’s dog is fine…the other dog is fine (as far as I know).  I will, however, no longer walk by that house again.

Pet Sitter’s Perspective on Dogs in Mesa Parks.

I LOVE taking my dogs to the park.  They love it too!  Did you know that all parks in Mesa are dog friendly?  That doesn’t mean they are all dog parks and dogs are allowed off the leash.  The City of Mesa has put together a great list of Doggie Do’s and Dont’s. So before you visit one of Mesa’s great parks with your pooch, be sure you know the rules and common courtesies.

Whether you are visiting one of the designated dog parks or not, owners are responsible for the behavior of their pet, requested to keep their dog under control and pick up after them.  Common sense tells us that not every PERSON is dog friendly. Even though you love your dog and your dog loves people, there may be people or kids around that are terrified of dogs.  Be respectful and keep your dog on a leash if NOT in a designated dog park.  No one wants to see your dog’s poo…so be prepared and bring some poop bags with you to clean up after your pet.

According to the Mesa City Code if you don’t want to follow the sate law and a park ranger catches you with your dog off leash, or not cleaning up after them, you can be convicted of a violation, be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be punished by a fine not to exceed two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500.00) or by imprisonment not to exceed six (6) months, or by both fine and imprisonment.  IS IT WORTH IT?

Let’s all enjoy our city parks with respect and keep our dogs on leashes and pick up after them.  This will ensure fun for all for years to come!

What else would you like to see pet parents do when at the park with their dog?

Arizona Leash Laws

As a Mesa pet sitter it has recently come to my attention that the general public does NOT understand Arizona leash laws.

I have experienced 3 instances in the past week where dog owners are out in public spaces WITHOUT their dogs on a leash.  I’m not sure where the idea comes from…not even Ceasar Milan teaches pet parents to walk their dogs off leash.  However, apparently there is a large portion of society that thinks their dogs behave and actually listen to them when they are off leash.  While pet sitting in Mesa, I have experienced it enough to say that YOUR DOGS DO NOT CARE WHAT COMMANDS ARE COMING OUT OF YOUR MOUTH, IF THERE IS ANOTHER DOG IN THE VICINITY, THEY WILL APPROACH IT. That is just what dogs do.  Understand the basics of dog behavior and you will understand that all dogs want to sniff other dog’s butts…and if they aren’t controlled by their “responsible” pet parent, they are going to do just that.  NO MATTER HOW LOUD YOU YELL AT THEM.

So, wearing that trusted leash around your neck while “walking your dog” in public will NOT keep your dog(s) or any other dog(s) safe.  You will not be able to get your dog to “heal” before it approaches a leashed dog with a completely stressed out parent at the other end of the leash.  (And yes, I understand there is a small portion of dogs that will not bother others while off leash.  But this is not the norm.  I don’t even know a dog trainer that will allow their dog to walk off leash unless in designated areas.)

Did you know that not every dog on a walk will have a positive reaction to seeing other dogs?  Did you know that if your unleashed dog is hurt by a dog on a leash you will be responsible for the vet bill?  Did you know that if your unleashed dog hurts a leashed dog, you will also be lawfully responsible to pay for the other dog’s vet bills?  When was the last time you read Arizona’s Leash Law?

Consider the following:

  1. It’s not fair to those that keep their dogs on leash.  It’s one thing to go to a designated dog park and let your dog off leash and something completely different going to the park down the street from your house and doing the same.  If you’re at a dog park, everyone is of the understanding that dogs will be off leash.  You can then decide on your own if you are comfortable allowing your dog to roam free or not.  At the park down the street from your house, pet parents will most likely become stressed out, wondering if the unleashed, uncontrolled dog is going to approach. This puts the pet parent and the dog at an unfair disadvantage.

  2. Your dog may do great with recall commands when you are alone at the park and there is little distraction.  It’s a completely different story when another dog comes into the picture and your dog becomes distracted…and then shockingly isn’t so good at listening.

  3. Not all leashed dogs are well trained.  Some may be aggressive and not appreciate being approached by a non-leashed dog.  That is when trouble starts.

  4. Not everyone likes dogs.  I know…hard to understand.  But, there are people and kids, that are legitimately afraid of dogs.  You don’t want to be the one contributing to their fear?  Do you?

As your Mesa pet sitter I found it my duty to share that not only is it the LAW in Arizona to keep your dog(s) leashed unless in designated areas, but it’s the responsible thing to do.  And, speaking of responsibility…pick up your dog(s) poop (that’s the law too).