Let's talk: Public Place Restrictions

about 4 years ago
CLOSED: This discussion has concluded.

Should we require dogs to be on a leash when they are: in main urban areas (e.g. Te Puke Shopping Centre); on our cycleways; around estuary margins?

How can we make public restrictions less confusing?

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Relates to Relates to document: Public Place Restrictions

Thanks for having your say! Consultation has now finished. We'll be in touch with an adopted plan in August.

  • Jenny Grose over 4 years ago
    Dogs should be muzzled at all times while in public areas and onn leash on roads and cycleways and public walkways.
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    • Lisa Swain over 4 years ago
      Strongly disagree
    • paula over 4 years ago
      Really, can I muzzle all the potentially dangerous humans too or would that be unfair?
    • JT over 4 years ago
      Muzzled across the board may be a bit extreme, but definitely on a leash in all public areas no mater how isolated it may seem. The only places for dogs off leases area securely fenced private yards, dedicated dog parks and farms. No ifs no buts no maybes and no confusion. Keep it on a leash.
  • phil mckernon over 4 years ago
    bad dog owners will always be bad dog owners. more restrictions , signs and fines will not stop them.More needs to be done on the requirements of dog ownership.councils should not need to respond to knee jerk reactions from those who have not had the chance of the love and affection that dog ownership has.We talk of multi cultural society , the same i think applies with dogs, a better awareness and acceptance would benefit everyone
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    • paula over 4 years ago
      I agree wholeheartedly I think you may just be more polite than me.
    • john tee over 4 years ago
      If fines will not stop those who flout the law...then its easy confiscate the trouble...ie. the Dog
    • JT over 4 years ago
      Sorry, you may be able to reason with a bad dog owner, but definitely not with a dog that's gone bad!
  • AlTaylor over 4 years ago
    As with many council regulations I believe you have the challenge of how to codify common sense... as a responsible dog owner I believe dogs should be on their leads in urban areas and near roads - as much for their own safety as any other reason. However, we then need to be sensible as to when they can be off the lead, including in country parks, domains etc. It is the owners responsibility to ensure they behave.
    Hide reply (1)
    • john tee over 4 years ago
      I agree with you common sense must prevail, but if your dog is off its leash,running free.. how can you be sure it will behave, or how can you be sure it will not attack a small child....country parks etc. are where we take our children to play, safe from the roads......
  • ruff123 over 4 years ago
    Leashed in urban areas: YesCycleways: YesEstuary margins: Depends on the area i.e. water access and typical visitor types & numbers, but we also need places to let the dog be a dog - our estuary margins are ideal fun zones so a blanket rule should not apply.
  • FreeLanceWriter over 4 years ago
    I am a 100 percent for having a law that says ALL dogs should be on leads in the western bay. My small dog has been attacked over the last 3 yrs by no less than 8 dogs, big dogs, which has frightened and stressed us both until it got to the point there was nowhere we felt safe walking in Katikati. I have complained until I am blue in the face to various council members and our MP Scot Simpson, but no one is listening to me. I was even told by a Katikati board member that he would do everything he could so that my dog and myself would be able to walk safely wherever we wanted in the town. He promised to get back to me. He never did. Thames and District Council are making it law, so I am told, that all dogs will be on leads this year because of many incidents like mine. It is just no good to have signs dotted everywhere saying 'All Dogs Must Be Under Control' - many aren't, and many of them are big dogs who have owners that cannot control their dogs. The last 3 yrs have been very stressful for me and my dog, especially when we meet a large dog off the lead with its owner too far away, not capable of controlling it. Sometimes I have met people with large dogs on leads - their was once incident where this woman had two Gold Retrievers on leads that were aggressive, she didn't have much control over them but thank god she hung on their leads for grim death because they frantically wrapped themselves around my legs, pulling me over on the pavement, growling and snapping, trying to reach my dog. I would like to see ALL dogs on leads except in well fenced designated areas that are well signposted for those owners who might not understand the concept of keeping their dog in the confined area if they want them to run free. They have this in place in other parts of the country so why not here in the Bay of Plenty?
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    • john tee over 4 years ago
      I agree with you, but can I point out, we are all talking about keeping dogs on a leash, or at least under control. But what about keeping your dog in a secure yard, so many times dogs of all breeds, jump the garden fence and are gone, no care, no control, and what happens...happens attitude. Now you have a potential dog or even pack of dogs, ready to maim who ever is in the wrong place at the wrong time. can you dog owners see why we are nervous, read the news..did you see recently the picture of a very small child,face destroyed..come on....this should never be.............
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      • FreeLanceWriter over 4 years ago
        I agree with you John. All dogs should be kept in a secure yard - there was a time when the SPCA came round to check on your property to see if it was properly fenced when you had a dog from thee. They don't anymore. Who polices it now?
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        • john tee over 4 years ago
          I do phone the local Council about dogs continually barking and jumping over the fence, I must say they always respond, and they do send someone round, or phone the owners if its happened more than once, and its not easy to police all complaints..but if it goes on..and on....and on. then the Council should take the matter as a serious nuisance, and a serious danger to the community, and get the problem resolved one way or the other...when the problem needs fixing... fix it...
  • conan89 over 4 years ago
    Yes all dogs should be on a leash in shopping centres or where the general public is
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    • paula over 4 years ago
      if dogs are on leash every where we might see a human then i'm afraid they would be on leash all the time...why dont you make a positive suggestion like areas where humans are informed that dog owners are allowed instead of where we are not....I have found more aggressive humans walking my dogs than I have aggresive dogs..
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      • conan89 over 4 years ago
        Im sorry you disagree with me ive owned dogs for over 20 years love all breeds and types of dogs but im sorry i do not accept all dogs should be allowed to wander through shopping areas off there leads especially where im walking with my grandaughter . Have seen many instances of dogs rushing people etc in shopping areas where owners are either distracted talking to people or have entered shops leaving dog unattended out side hence my comment . When i walk my dog in public she is on a lead and that is for her safety she is totally under my control at all times. When she is taken to a park i check all surroundings ie for children and other dogs and i judge if the enviroment is safe for her. I have a large dog and alot of people are intimidated by that they do not know she a big softie there fore i respect there right to be in the facinity of me and my dog. I think that makes me a good dog owner . Im sick of other dogs rushing my dog that are not on leads or under control as well . And as much as i love her with all my heart and she is literally a member of off our family I would never trust her 100% as things happen even to the best dogs owners . Im pleased for you that you havnt had much troublewith agressive dogs i wish we were all that lucky. :)
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        • paula over 4 years ago
          I do agree with the fact that dogs are unpredictable and I too leash near roads or in town ..I too am careful about checking my surroundings for humans...I just think it would be nice to have some places...nice places not just a fenced small paddock or gravel carpark where dogs can run together without recrimination...if I see a dog owner with a dog on a lead I restsin mine...I suggested that we have some areas where signs go up saying its off leash...and those who don't want there dogs to socialise can go to one of the many places they can walk on the lead...and people who don't like dogs can go just about anywhere...I also point out again that we do pay fees for dog ownership in nz and can't see that we get anything for that as a positive incentive...even if I choose never to leave my property I still have to pay fees...yet I can't choose not to pay for services I don't use such as libraries and schools as I have no children..but you are correct we are probably responsible owners and its us that suffer for others negligent behaviour...
      • JT over 4 years ago
        And in making that comment Paula, have you not realised that there is an obvious concern by those aggressive humans, that there is a problem with the way that you control your dogs.All dogs on leashes, in all public places, eliminates all confusion,The dogs are still getting exercised on the end of a leash.More Dedicated Dog Exercise Areas will give owners and non-owners a legal safe zone for all concerned.
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        • paula over 4 years ago
          I would just like to point out that i have walked my dogs in many many places in several countries and never have i felt the level of contempt that dog ownership can bring quite like NZ...as I said before I love it here but some attitudes are distressing. why as humans do we feel it is acceptable to use the behaviours of dogs for herding, guide dogs, seizure dogs, comfort and companionship, police work, bomb exposure etc but not feel it is acceptable to walk them off a lead ? I agree with you that dogs should be leashed in urban areas even on busy beaches but surely there must be some time or place that a dog can be off lead and learn to socialise with other dogs and humans without fear of reproach. I stress again what i suggested was areas where humans are warned that dogs may be off leash at certain times or on certain tracks and avoid those areas taking some responsibility for themselves...humans can go anywhere dog owners who pay additional council fees to non dog owners i point out again are EXTREMELY restricted already without your suggested blanket ban. dogs do not get properly exercised on a lead and often it is dogs who are poorly cared for , never allowed to fully expend energy that become aggressive and difficult to manage, your blanket ban will only impact responsible owners as we are the only people who will take notice , the people who don't give a damn still won't give a damn. a dog exercise area can not be 50 KL out off town or a small gravel car park at omokoroa...we need to use some common sense we have hundreds of K's of coast, estuary, forest cant we use just a little bit for our furry friends or are they just to be used.
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          • JT over 4 years ago
            I appreciate where you are coming from.Some of us Kiwi’s are very territorial and tend to speak our mind rather than sit back, not say anything and just stew on it. This can be a good thing otherwise nothing changes or people just keep breaking the law.As you have suggested, the compromise would be “Dogs off Lead Permitted in this Area” Signage. Dedicated areas. Then anywhere else is automatically taken as Leads only.Acceptable to me as we would all know where we stand, pro-lead and anti-lead.I suggest the Council should produce a web page so it is known in no uncertain terms where these areas are.Maybe take a leaf out of the Cheltenham UK Council Website.Ah... yes, I too have lived in other countries, ten years in Australia and two years in England and I have to say the problems we have here with unruly dog owners are the same in all three countries. In fact one of our most nerve racking experiences for us happened in Cheltenham, a block away from GCHQ.The laws there are very harsh for owners that do not clean up their dogs mess, 250pounds on the outskirts of the city climbing as you got closer to the centre where they reached a whopping 1000pound fine. That’s $2000NZ and I don’t recall seeing any poo left on the streets (except for 27 bright green used dog poo bags I counted shoved in a hedge that only revealed themselves in autumn when the leaves fell).The area for dogs on leashes at all times is extensive there, but the fine was only 80pound, so occasionally got ignored.In Cheltenham I worked with a guy who owns a Japanese Akita, and he used to get brassed off with other dog owners who did not keep their dogs on leads, not because he could not control his on its leash, but because the other dogs wanted to play and would get in the Akita’ private comfort zone and when Akita’ looks like they are making friendly doggy inviting gestures, crouching down on front paws looking up and back legs high, it’s actually in attack mode. The result... loose dog off lead goes to vet!In a Gladstone reserve in Australia we witnessed a young woman chastise a couple whose small dogs were off leads and wanted to play with her two dogs. She pointed out that just because they had small dogs of no consequence was no excuse for them being off leads as she was having great difficulty in controlling her two dogs because of them. She berated them for giving dog owners a bad name and not abiding by the law. That young lady had on her leads two of the biggest Rottweiler’s I had ever seen.So my point is, no matter where in the world you may be, dogs off leads cause others grief.....even dog owners, and like humans, Dogs don’t necessarily like other Dogs just because they are Dogs.
          • john tee over 4 years ago
            Paula, I hear what you say, but I still maintain all dogs must be restrained from the opportunity of causing harm to the public..and if any dog can jump the fence and run free...the owner must be responsible.
        • paula over 4 years ago
          Removed by moderator.
      • john tee over 4 years ago
        Dogs are more likely to attack for no apparent reason, we see the results all the time, sometimes killing the defenceless....you should be in control of your dog at all times.
  • paula over 4 years ago
    I came to live in NZ from the Uk and am thrilled to be here but I have to say my one big disappointment has been the dog walking issues I face on a daily basis. I have 2 big dogs they have been socialised with other dogs since they were 8 weeks old, they are on leads when I go into town or near traffic, but I don't think they should have to be on leads anywhere i might see a human who does not have a dog. we have so many places that dogs can't go but what about a few places or stretches on beaches etc where dogs and dog owners can walk maybe sign posted for non dog owners that it is a dog safe place, instead of the other way around. i have been verbally abused and even nearly pushed off a stream bridge by non dog owners, my dogs have had things thrown at them and been kicked on occasion as they walk past people....my dogs have never retaliated though I have been seriously tempted at times! In the Uk I walked with a group of other dog owners in open park areas and beaches etc there were pooh bins provided by the council and we policed each other if you didn't pick up your poo or you had an over excitable dog the others would help you with socialisation or ask you to clean up....why because we have dogs should we be asked not to access public areas..? In NZ that would mean just about everywhere..sorry long winded I know...but in conclusion1. sign post areas for non dog owners to inform them that dogs will be off leash.2. poo bins would be awesome if they are there people will use them.3. beaches and estuary areas are huge in our district yet they are nearly all restricted in some way...please identify some places where we can walk unmolested by non dog owners.4. we pay an additional fee to be able to own our dogs this is above council rates that non dog owners pay what do we get in return?5. don't say we get dog wardens and the pound because I have never seen a warden and certainly never been to the pound, infact when I found a lost dog and contacted the council with its council registration number which its owner paid for, they refused to contact the owners as they said that was not the point of registration!!!!! When I asked what the point of registration was then they struggled to answer me..6. I took a puppy to teh pound and offered to pay any vet bill sit incurred and said i would adopt it if the owner could not be located and it was euthanaised less than 12 hours later because it had an episode of diarrhoea...it may have been fed for the first time with new food and had an upset tummy but they did not contact me and offer even any veterinary care except death!7. thats what dog owners get for their fees!anyway enough ranting...please try to be more open minded...
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    • Lisa Swain over 4 years ago
      I strongly agree with 1. sign post areas for non dog owners to inform them that dogs will be off leash.2. poo bins and 3. great access to beaches and estuary areas.
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      • john tee over 4 years ago
        I would just add to that notice.....DANGER DOGS NOT UNDER CONTROL.....
  • Lisa Swain over 4 years ago
    Yes on leads in urban areas.No not on cycle ways and estuary. this should be managed by being responsible i.e. share woth care. Keep left .teaching your dog to sit for bikes
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    • WBSue over 4 years ago
      I've got to laugh - I there would have to be one hell of a campaign to develop 'responsible' behaviour. It is rare on the Waihi Beach cycle track to see owners bother to control their dogs. They allow them to bark at cyclists, jump up at them, run in front. Yes there is the odd owner, embarrassed at their dog's behaviour, make an effort to control them - but the dog usually ignores them
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      • paula over 4 years ago
        where can the dog owners of Waihi go not to be bothered by cyclists and dog despising humans, I have had more near misses with cyclists than dogs...PS we pay an extra fee to the council for our dogs what do cyclists pay again?? mmm?
      • john tee over 4 years ago
        This is what we have to get the council to hear.....Dogs are not in most cases under the owners control, and Dogs can be frightening and very Dangerous....come on you dog owners, you have a wild animal.
  • alison over 4 years ago
    Yes all dogs shoul be on a leash in public places because not everyone is ok with dogs especially children. We all know our dogs but not other peoples and they could be unpredictsble in many circumstances0
  • WBSue over 4 years ago
    All dogs should always be on leads in public places - this includes beaches, estuary margins, towns and bush. These days there are very few dogs which are trained to heel and to stop on command. Many NZ bird species struggle to survive, and having dogs disturbing nesting and feeding birds should not be permitted.
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    • paula over 4 years ago
      more humans walking with kids destroy nesting birds etc than dogs walking off leash with responsible owners, I see kids remove eggs from nests even stomp on them just for the hell of it, throw stones and sticks at birds on the beach and in town, whilst mums and dads stand by watching or not watching as is often the case because they feel they have the right to be somewhere with no restraints...I would not let my dog get away with that behaviour, my dogs have never killed a bird when out walking off lead..
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      • john tee over 4 years ago
        But dogs could kill a small child....or maim for life....you must have seen the News...
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        • poppie over 4 years ago
          Yes, I see the news today where yet another child has been killed by Mum or Dad. None by dogs though.
  • wmikem over 4 years ago
    The dogs need to be under control signs are a cop-out;to be under control,dogs need to on a lead and i think this should be applicable to urban areas,with specially designated reserves so dogs can roam free. Dogs can be unpredictable,happy and boisterous,or threatening,which can be very concerning for children and the elderly and a few inbetween. nor do i think,dogs roaming free coexist with cycleways,recipe for trouble. As is often the way, a few wayward owners, no-hopers with bad manners and attitude,spoil life for the numerous, responsible majority.that s why we have laws!
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    • paula over 4 years ago
      wmikem, where are these dog areas in tauranga and western bay? and please don't say tect park, what about people who don't have the resources to travel that far to walk there dogs? where can we go and walk our dogs off leash?
  • JT over 4 years ago
    Dogs should be on a leash in ‘All Public Places’, BY LAW, be it Beaches, Parks, Reserves, Town or Country.We need a blanket ban so there is absolutely no confusion by any dog owner that the only place a dog may be allowed to run free, wild and unrestrained is in a well fenced Dedicated Dog Exercise Area. The more of these we have the safer the general public will be, physically and mentally.Any dog off a leash is “not” under the direct control of the owner as can be attested by the amount of times my wife has been bitten or rushed at by supposed well behaved (“don’t, worry he won’t bite”) dogs.A leash dangling by a dog owners side while the animal is roaming free is akin to riding a bike with the helmet strapped to the handlebars, completely pointless, and too late when required!
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    • paula over 4 years ago
      where are the dedicated dog areas in tauranga and western bay that i can walk my dog off the lead without fear of being shouted at or glared at? answer me that JT...name me an area local to tauranga where I can walk my dog without fear of meeting people with an attitude similar to yours for more than 10 minutes without having to walk in circle..? i have to say I am astounded that you claim your wife has been bitten and rushed on numerous occasion, i have owned 7 dogs over 20 something years and never have they been aggressive to a human or another dog for that matter, I have many many friends with dogs none of whose dogs I have ever witnessed or heard of being aggressive and certainly not biting, but again I am a responsible dog owner who you feel should be blanket banned from walking my dog off leash! I wonder do you ever shout at a person with a dog several yards away from you minding its own business "your dog should be on a lead"? I wonder?
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      • JT over 4 years ago
        I am asking for many more Dedicated Dog Exercise Areas" in all localities so we do not have to put up with the dangers of unrestrained canines, be it large aggressive breeds to purse puppies.You can still exercise your dog on its leash, so where's the problem. Yes I have asked dog owners to put their dog / dogs on leashes, and in some cases I have had to yell when the animal is out of control and I have also kicked a few dogs to keep them off my terrified wife when they have rushed her.I have had owners say, "it's okay he wont bite", it did.I have had them say "oh I'm sorry he's never done that before", yeah right.I have had them say "it's okay he's all bark and no bite", if that's true then why the hell is he barking.And the one that would have had me on assault charges if it was not for the intervention of our individual wives, "you must have scared them"!I have had them come onto our own property in the cover of darkness and savage my pet. Vet bills and cremation invoices waiting for owner of that loose beast.I have caught two stray dogs to date and had them impounded.I have run out of fingers to count the amount of times dogs have caused grief for us.And if you want stats, just look in the paper, attacks are epidemic in proportion to our population.I quote from BOP Times Wednesday August 5th 2015, 'On Sunday, a report to the annual meeting of plastic surgeons revealed 99,003 dog victims sought treatment at public hospital emergency departments in the decade to June 30, 2014. Of these, 5842 cases - about two a day - required hospitalisation and surgery, half requiring general anaesthesia. More than a third of victims were children, mostly with facial injuries.' unquote.Now I'm sorry you appear to have taken this as a person attack, but we are tired of being physically attacked.
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        • paula over 4 years ago
          I am astounded at your list of incidents, you must be one of the unluckiest people I have ever heard talk about dogs...However, and I don't take this personally I obviously just have opinions opposite to yours still don't think that asking people to keep dogs on leash at all times when out walking is the answer to your problems. Believe me when i say a responsible dog owner would not allow its dog to roam, I would be frantic looking for mine if it were missing ..the people you have problems with are not people like me or dogs like mine and that is my objection to a blanket ban on dogs off lead.you can not fully exercise and socialise a dog on a lead it is impossible, my dogs could run for 8 hours a day at our place and still be up for going for a walk how can a walk on a lead be enough..it just is not, they need to run. A well exercised dog is far less likely to be aggressive.so i think we will just have to disagree, but I am sorry to hear of so many negative experiences, experts do say that dogs pick up on human facial expressions and actions and you may well be scaring the dogs not that its an excuse for being bitten. I hope the council may come to realise that as dog owners who pay the registration fee's that non dog owners don't, we would be happy to walk away from non dog owners but we also need space and a pleasant environment, just because we have dogs I don't think we should have to travel miles or walk in dingy places just because we have four legged friends. So i guess we are both saying that the council should maybe provide safe areas or signage to the effect that the areas are unrestricted so that people like yourselves can avoid them.i hope that you are never bothered again by beasts!
      • JT over 4 years ago
        Where are the dedicated dog areas in tauranga and western bay that i can walk my dog off the lead without fear of being shouted at or glared at? answer me that JT...name me an area local to tauranga where I can walk my dog without fear of meeting people with an attitude similar to yours for more than 10 minutes without having to walk in circle..? They are listed on the Western BOP Council Web page, hidden through a bunch of links. I was quite surprised when I found them. Hope this helps.
    • john tee over 4 years ago
      Absolutely, I agree with what you say, but sadly I think the brutal attacks by so called lovely family pets, will continue, I can`t see any of the powers that be, sticking their neck out, it just is not going to happen.
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      • JT over 4 years ago
        I'm sorry Paula, but a couple of your comments are exactly my point.Most of those Dog Owners who had the problem dogs considered themselves responsible owners.And if Dogs do pick up on facial expressions and actions (they certainly sense fear) then all the more reason to have them under REAL CONTROL on the end of a LEASH.
  • paula over 4 years ago
    I looked at the tauranga walkways brochure from the council it doesn't even mention dogs...so where can dog walkers go?
  • wmikem over 4 years ago
    I think the council 's been very slack with addressing this issue in general;perahaps it is a tough one to sort out. but as we all know there will never be a rule or law ,that will please everybody.we also need to be responsible owners,whether that means owning a dog or a car,being a sensible and socially aware person. Lets hope this debate will bring about more areas where dogs can be off lead and all feel safe and comfortable;dogs and people.
  • Kahu over 4 years ago
    Declaration: Ex-dog owner. I believe there has to be balance. My wife has been nipped, jumped up on with muddy paws etc by "friendly, harmless" dogs in reserves and walkways.Dog owners should be allowed to throw balls etc for retrieval as dogs get much enjoyment and exercise this way and if such exercising is done on "empty" reserves or beaches then no harm done. If there are families about then "on a leash" has to be the rule.However, there are sensitive estuary margins in some places which need absolute protection from dogs (and cats, rats etc). In Omokoroa we have the dotterels nesting on shore and godwits and other seabirds which are a special feature of our community which must have absolute protection at all times.
  • JM over 4 years ago
    I believe that dogs should be on a lead at all times off home property or in a designated dog exercise area.As dog scent disturbs birds such as godwits, banded rail, fern birds and Kotuku (all of which frequent our area) I would like to see No Dogs on Foreshore enforced.
  • john tee over 4 years ago
    Not much activity lately...reading past mail it looks like an on going disagreement. We are talking about exercise for the dogs....and safety for the family`s and children who live in this area...what should be the priority, its not really a difficult decision, One member of our community...scared or heaven help us maimed for life is one person too many, end of discussion...Come on dog owners...keep your dogs under your control at all times, leashed where the public may be found, and secure in a fully fenced yard when your at home.
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    • JT over 4 years ago
      Totally agree John.By the way, have you checked the Give Us Your Feedback link next to the Join The Discussion link?Cheers.