I fully agree with Jan Gregory’s letter (January 13) about the danger of having uncontrolled dogs on the beach.
The dog owner whose dog was savagely attacked and later died has had her holiday ruined. As an animal lover, I feel for her.
If this had been a small child our reputation as a safe, family-friendly holiday destination would be wrecked.
What is the council thinking? I have sent a copy of the article ‘Off lead dogs kill in beach mauling’ to each councillor with a letter stating my indignation and fury at this unhappy event.
I strongly urge all who share my views to write to Russ Pigg, general manager and ask that copies for all councillors be made.
From my experience at Narrawallee this summer most dog owners walk past the dog signs without even looking at them and take their dog off leash anywhere and at any time despite the rules which specify places and times to use the beach. I even saw a pig on a lead right near the children’s playground one day. He bit his owner.
Don’t put up with our lovely Narrawallee area being made unsafe and dangerous for the many folk who simply want to use the beach and surrounds in guaranteed safety. Make your views known.
In the letters section of last week’s Times was yet another letter from our local Narrawallee anti-dogs lobby. It was an entirely predictable rave about a tragedy at another beach and featured the normal selection of unwarranted alarmism and eminently contestable statements. The kindest description of the letter is that it was “unhelpful”.
Dogs live within our community and will continue to do so, as they have for all of recorded history. The benefits they provide are companionship, better health, social interaction and security .These greatly outweigh any health or financial disadvantages. Dogs are here to stay.
So if we are to keep these animals then we must look after them properly. This includes the off leash exercise that is necessary for their mental health and general wellbeing.
The anti-dog lobby had better get used to the idea that a responsible community needs adequate local off leash exercise areas and that we will need more and more of these as residential blocks get smaller and our community more urbanised. Of necessity these areas will have to be multitasked.
This is not a problem for the vast majority of the community who are happy to share.
What’s the solution? Well for a start it’s not by having an argument, that’s just polarising – creating “sides”.
We need people of good will to sit down together, isolate what the real problems are and look for optimal acceptable solutions.
Many of our current crop of community leaders and opinion makers are just not doing this at the moment and the Ulladulla and Districts Community Forum has been particularly destructive and divisive.
There is a chance for the Community Forum to be a part of the solution and not a cause of the problem but it will require major changes.
Why has Shoalhaven City Council not taken the lead of Botany Bay Council in Sydney and actually sought the views of the community on the merger proposal with Kiama in a formalised way in the form of a city-wide plebiscite?
The people of the Shoalhaven have been treated like absolute mugs by being kept in the dark and drip-fed information at inconvenient times for any serious analysis to occur.
Is council terrified the result they receive will fly in the face of their desired outcome? Is the state government scared their inability to keep the people informed will come back to bite them where it hurts?
Let's hope they would not be so cynical.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.