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Know your dog

Thursday, November 7, 2019

Just like people, dogs have different needs and reactions to different situations.

Eleven-year old Buxton is confident and happy with people he knows but can get nervous and frightened when unfamiliar people and other dogs come into his space.

Owner Emily Ainley always keeps Buxton on a lead when out of the home and doesn’t go near off-leash areas because she knows his personality very well.

“For people who don’t know him he can come across as jumpy and even aggressive,” Emily said. “He had a rough start in life and the ongoing effect is that he just doesn’t play well with other dogs or people.”

“Other dog owners or dogs aren’t responsible for the way Buxton reacts but it would be so much better for him if owners could keep their dogs on-leash when they should be.

If dogs are only off-leash in off-leash areas walking with a dog in Bayside would be a whole lot easier and more enjoyable for everyone,” she said.

Respect everyone's space

Bayside Dog Alliance President Amanda Levi said it all comes down to respect for everyone’s space, dogs included.

“Understanding your dog’s competencies is critical for their wellbeing and happiness. Dogs also have different needs according to their age, from puppies who are learning the basics, to elder dogs who may have health problems that outsiders cannot see.” she said.

“People need to be respectful of on-leash and off-leash areas for everyone’s enjoyment of our beautiful Bayside spaces” she said.

Bayside has nearly 12,000 registered dogs, each with their own personality, temperament, likes and dislikes.

Knowing and understanding your dog and the areas they are best suited for play, can help avoid costly fines or even prosecution.

For information about off-leash areas including summer beach off-leash restrictions from 1 November to 30 March visit www.bayside.vic.gov.au/walking-your-dog-bayside.

Things to remember when walking your dog

  • Always walk your dog on leash, unless in a designated off leash area.
  • You can only walk up to four dogs at once.
  • Bring a bag with you and pick up after your dog.
  • Dogs are prohibited entry to some parks and reserves, check signage before entry.
  • Make sure your dog is wearing its Council registration tag.

It is also a good idea to bring items your dog may enjoy like water, treats or a favourite toy/ball while out and about.

Your responsibilities in off leash areas

  • Dogs must be on a chain, cord or leash if the dog is within 20 metres of:
    • a children’s play equipment area
    • an area where a public meeting is being held
    • a permanently designated barbeque and picnic area
    • an area where an organised sporting event is taking place.
  • Dogs must be on leash in all car parks.
  • Owners must have effective control of their dog at all times. You must be able to recall your dog promptly and place it back on a leash if the need arises.

Image of dog owner walking her dog

Emily and Buxton enjoy walking together in Bayside.