Dogs should not be allowed on the relatively few grassy areas of Hoboken’s parks. First, it is inevitable that not all dog owners will adhere to pooper scooper laws resulting in people (including children) stepping, sitting, etc. in dog feces. Many current dog owners currently do not pick up after their dogs as is evidenced daily on our sidewalks; why grant more rights to those who abuse their current privileges?While stronger enforcement of pooper scooper laws would deter some violators, it’s unfair for taxpayers to pay for police resources to monitor each park around the clock.
Second, even if, against all odds, all dog owners scoop the poop, there will still be much feces left behind in the grass for people to inadvertently step in, sit on, or smell.
Third, who’s going to clean up the dog urine? I’ve never seen a dog owner clean up after “number 1”, yet it presents many of the same problems as “number 2”: it smells, carries germs and isn’t advisable to sit in.
As a dog lover, former dog owner (not in Hoboken) and taxpayer, I think that no true dog lover would subject a dog to the confines of Hoboken. Those people that do are selfishly subjecting their dog to days of loneliness in apartments and not enough fresh air. No dog owner could reasonably expect Hoboken to have more dog space than it currently does; in fact, until a few years ago, no dog runs existed. I bet that there’s more square footage of park space “per dog” in Hoboken than “per human.”
Everyone in Hoboken supports better maintenance of the dog runs, as well as better maintenance of all the park grounds. A walk through any of Hoboken’s parks shows that park maintenance is also lacking in (for starters) trimming shrubs, cutting and replanting grass and painting park benches and playgrounds. In short, dog owners should lobby for better maintained dog runs (and parks), but they should also face the realties of life in an urban area. If you must have a dog in Hoboken, respect the rest of us (the overwhelming majority) that don’t have dogs and don’t want to deal with their waste in our grassy areas.
Name Withheld Upon Request