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Are Dog Parks Safe for your Pet? Small Dog Killed in Cleveland

A small dog was killed at a South Euclid dog park and now the owner of the larger dog is being charged. Do you feel your dog is safe from harm at the nearby parks?

A recent incident in South Euclid where a Husky fatally attacked a Chihuahua at a dog park has some dog owners worried about going to the parks.

The owner of the Chihuahua, Rizzo, told police that a much larger Husky grabbed her pet and shook her "like a rag," according to a Plain Dealer story. The Chihuahua died on the way to the emergency vet clinic, police said. 

The owner of the Husky is now facing misdemeanor charges.

There was an incident in 2008 at , when a Maltese/poodle puppy was killed after being attacked by a standard poodle. This happened at the park before there was a separate, fenced-in area for small pets. 

Watch . Many parks are following suit with Bow Wow Beach and creating small dog areas that keep the little dogs separate from the bigger pooches. 

There are several dog park options for Akron-area residents to choose from:

Patch wants to know if you feel safe taking dogs, big or small, to these facilities. Do you only go to the parks with separate areas for smaller dogs like Bow Wow Beach? 

Man Circles Dog Park, Threatens Woman After Dog Bitten

Sometimes, it's not the dogs people have to worry about at the parks, it's the people.

Read one of the latest incident reports at Bow Wow Beach, when a Tallmadge woman's dog bit another man's dog. The woman told police she was  by the other dog owner. The man told the woman she was going "to know what it was like to feel pain" and cursed at her, according to the police report.

Director of Parks and Recreation Linda Nahrstedt said, "In general, the calls we receive are more related to folks complaining about other people’s behavior, rather than the dogs behavior."

Amanda Harnocz April 05, 2012 at 04:13 PM
I take my dog Lola to the park in Akron and Bow Wow Beach pretty frequently. I've never had a problem with my pup, but I've seen other dogs get into some nasty fights. Usually the owners are good about breaking things up and leave if necessary. Have you ever experienced a problem with a pet or the pet's owner at a park?
Anonymous April 05, 2012 at 04:14 PM
If your dog is aggressive, don't bring it to a dog park! And, please keep an eye on your animals! Last time, I was at bow wow beach I watched some lady's dog go up to several people, hike a leg and pee on them while she was yapping on the phone the whole entire time she was there!
Ed Fisher April 05, 2012 at 06:22 PM
My dog, Layla, is friend to everyone. But not every dog. So I don't take her to BowWow Beach, as much as she would like to go. She can be very short tempered when other dogs approach her. So it's simple. If your dog doesn't play well with other dogs, DON'T TAKE THEM TO THE DOG PARK !
Mindy Davis April 05, 2012 at 08:33 PM
Most pet owners know whether or not their dog, big or small, gets along well with other animals. If the dog is aggressive, it shouldn't be there. Sometimes, however, the owners are far more scary than the dogs themselves-people who are bound and determined to drag everyone under the bitter bus with them. You see them everywhere, of course, but honestly, most of the people at Bow Wow Beach are very friendly and personable, happy to chat and admire each other's dogs. Overall Bow Wow Beach is a fun place to go for a little excercise and socialization.
Jack Kelly April 06, 2012 at 03:26 AM
I remember when the "beach" first opened, there were reports that there were problems with people dropping off their dogs and leaving them unattended (I specifically remember something in the Sentry a couple of years ago that when a dog owner returned to retrieve their dog, the owner was called out for it and she copped a 'tude. Plus, there are (too many) people -- the ignorant, entitled, careless and/or lazy -- who do NOT pay attention to what their dog is doing because they're too busy gabbing it up in their little clique. It's these same careless owners who seem to forget they're DOGS! They are animals, become territorial when around other dogs, and will "default" to their instincts in times of high stress. "Oh, but my little Cujo doesn't act this way in my backyard". Yeah, because your dog isn't around dozens of other dogs in your fenced-in backyard, Ignorant Dog Owner.
Bobbie Gould April 06, 2012 at 01:36 PM
I think this is a very poorly worded survey. No place is 100% safe and while I am not afraid to take my dog to the park, I have experienced problems with other people and their dogs. There is not a place to indicate this in your survey. The question of safety would have been measured more accurately if you had given folks a choice of how safe they felt such as boxes that ranged from very safe to very threatened. Your article also should have mentioned that when you take the number of incidents and compare that to the number of animals that use the park, the percentage of real problems is very small. As in all things in life, you have to decide if the benefits outweigh the risks. I firmly believe that at Bow Wow Beach they certainly do.
LINDA ROGERS April 06, 2012 at 03:24 PM
I took my dog to a doggie daycare one day and when I returned home from picking her up I went to feed her and she wouldn't eat her food. I looked inside her mouth and I could see where she had been bitten and no one at the daycare had informed me of any altercation. I never returned!
joe April 06, 2012 at 08:33 PM
The majority of people are smart enough to know if their dog is a problem, the problem I have is with those who walk their dog and have no control, had a neighbor in River Estate who's dog was attacked by large dog who's owner had no clue how to control, small minority who can not should be fined by animal control
Marty Dennis April 06, 2012 at 10:46 PM
As the signs indicate at Bow Wow Beach, "it's the owner's responsibility" - to be there, to stay with your dog, to be aware of your dog's behavior. Don't go to socialize while your dog is misbehaving somewhere else, don't leave your dog unattended, and pick up after them no matter what! They are YOUR children and need the same attention a young child would. The park is a great place to let our dogs run around free, but let's keep them safe and protected.
Laura April 10, 2012 at 03:44 AM
I have a friend who had a horrible experience at Keiser park. Her dog had it's ear bitten off. The police were called and nothing was done.
Kellie Turner April 10, 2012 at 02:06 PM
I am the friend that Laura is referring to. It was a very traumatic situation. The man who's dog attacked my then ten month old puppy did nothing, in fact, he mocked me as I ran to the car to get the puppy to the vet. Our puppy had to have two surgeries, a late night trip to the emergency room, and a 5 week recovery. The Cuyahoga Falls police and the mayor of Cuyahoga Falls refused to do anything. The man who's dog made the attack was intoxicated and he did nothing, nor was anything done about him, even though another idividual had made a police report. The police came, but nothing was done. The rules at the time were posted satating that owners are reponsible for any damage their dogs may cause. Clearly, the rules are not enforced.
joe ponikarovsky April 10, 2012 at 02:44 PM
this is why i don't bring my dogs. i know them well enough to know they're absolutely lovable, but are not the friendliest to other dogs. rather than risk an encounter that could injure them or others, i walk them in places where i feel i have more control, should something go wrong. but, it's worth mentioning that even on the bike/hike trail (for example) people LOVE to walk with their dogs on either a 10 foot leash or without a leash at all. both of which are dangerous, illegal, and punishable by a $100 fine. i've been chased on my bike by such dogs (for a mile; and by the way, good luck catching your dog after it ran a mile away from you after a bike travelling 20+ mph) and i've had them attack and try to, essentially, rape my dogs before. so my point is: it's more often than not negligent owners that cause these situations, not their dogs. you should know your dog well enough to know if it will behave well in a dog park. and you should never let it off its leash in a public setting; i don't care how good of dog it is you think you have, it's illegal and dangerous, period.
Amanda Harnocz April 11, 2012 at 02:26 PM
When did this happen Kellie?
danielle waskowski June 04, 2012 at 12:16 PM
all in all, dog parks are a breeding ground for diseases, IE PARVO, to name one.. these should never be visited by puppies that have not had their full vacines, so therefor, in the maltese poodle pup case, i feel bad that the dog passed, but the pup should not have been there in the first place... as fo other dogs going that are not the greatest with other dogs, check your dogs tempermant to make sure the dog is ok to visit these parks, and be ready to show proof of shots, and be ready to take any responsibilty your dog may do damage wise....
jiim may August 04, 2012 at 02:35 PM
short sweet and to the point! If you don't like the park shut up and stay awake and people that truly love their pets will take the dog there!
jiim may August 04, 2012 at 02:35 PM
stay away not awake

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