Part of being a pet owner is being considerate. You need to be considerate of your pet’s needs, but also the needs of the people around you. Lately, there have been a number of letters in the Bee from frustrated neighbors who have to deal with other people’s pets. I can relate to their sentiments. Obviously, I love animals, but I don’t want my neighbor’s dogs in my yard. Here are a few of the arguments I’ve heard to try and justify inconsiderate pet ownership.
1. We live in the "country"/She’s a "farm" dog.
A dog who roams the neighborhood, chases cars, bicycles, pedestrians, soils the neighbor’s yard, or knocks over trash cans is a dog with an irresponsible owner, whether you live in town or in the country. Inconsiderate is inconsiderate no matter where you are. If your dog does not come when called EVERY time, you do not have control over that dog and it should be on a leash. And yes, contrary to popular belief, there is a leash law in Bonner County.
2. It’s too hard for me to walk my dog(s) on a leash.
Go to an obedience class and teach your dog to walk on a leash. Allowing your dog to roam at large is not only unsafe for the dog (since some people in this area tend to shoot roaming dogs), but it also can cause legal problems. You can be liable for any damages, accidents and bites caused by your dog.
I live on 20 acres of land. One of my dogs always comes when called. The other two don’t. I know that. So anytime the two "problem children" are outside, they are on a leash. Being a responsible pet owner isn’t very difficult, so be good to your dog, but also be good to your neighbors.