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Felix Adamo/ The Californian

Columnist Sherry Davis.

Running ahead of schedule last week, I decided to pull into the shade at Mill Creek Park and check my messages before heading to my next appointment.

This park is a beautiful setting for the new courthouse and I was impressed at how clean and trash-free it appeared. It was nice to relax and take it all in, but that bucolic moment was short-lived because in the next few minutes I witnessed no fewer than three examples of irresponsible dog ownership.

A car pulled in a couple of spaces away from me, occupied by two women loudly engaged in animated conversation. Before the engine stopped running, the door was thrown open and a medium-sized dog flew out of the car and charged around the park, urinating and defecating as it went. The women made no effort to restrain the dog or clean up in his wake.

Next, a long-haired Chihuahua exited the door of one of the townhouses across the street, marked the fronts of the adjoining homes and then crossed 21st Street in rush-hour traffic. Upon entering the park, he took what appeared to be a regularly traveled route urinating and defecating as he went.

Moments later I observed a lady walking her 30-pound dog on a retractable lead along a well-trafficked path. As they passed an elderly woman walking with the aid of a cane, the dog crossed behind the woman wrapping the 10 to 12 feet of zip-line around her bare legs and cane and almost caused her to lose her balance.

So much for my tranquil morning bliss.

This entitled and negligent behavior with no regard for the health, safety or annoyance of others is not acceptable for dog owners and needs to stop. Failure to control your dog's actions can result in serious injuries and the accompanying financial liability.

Allowing your dog to eliminate on your neighbors' property is thoughtless and disrespectful.

The parks are not city-owned and operated public toilets for your dog, and your dog's poo is litter that belongs to you.

Get over yourself and your "too good to scoop" attitude and clean up after your dog!

Sherry Davis is a dog trainer/owner of CSI 4 K9s. Email her at These are her opinions, not necessarily The Californian's.