Dogs in the People’s Park

0:00 As I read the article about the “Dog Park” in the December 2 issue, I was confused. Where in Rye is a dog park? Having […]

Published December 18, 2022 9:30 PM
2 min read


As I read the article about the “Dog Park” in the December 2 issue, I was confused. Where in Rye is a dog park? Having lived here for almost 50 years I thought I knew just about every square mile of my lovely city — guess not. Then, as I continued to read the article, I realized that the gentleman was referring to beautiful Rye Town Park. I know, I’m being sarcastic, but a great deal of the article left me shaking my head in disbelief. 

First, can we clear up my confusion: There is no Dog Park in the City of Rye; there is, however, an awesome people park, Rye Town Park, where people have been given permission to let their dogs run off leash from 6 to 9:30 in the morning in a mapped out and very specific area.

As an early morning walker to the park, let me tell you about the “responsible” dog owners. I have observed people pull into the parking lot on Dearborn Avenue, opening the back door and allowing their off-leash dogs to run off into the park without a care in the world. After all, the dog cannot read the signs that clearly state that no dogs are allowed off the leash in this area. With their coffees in hand, I have watched dog owners saunter toward the Hill/Valley areas of the park while their dogs are busy romping and playing with their dog friends. 

As I have walked along the path by the beach, again the dogs have obviously not read the signs, nor the map stating where they are and are not allowed, I have been approached by dogs unaccompanied by their owners and have felt uncomfortable and sometimes scared. When the owner finally comes to retrieve the wandering dog, I am cheerfully informed that “he’s friendly”. Well, how am I supposed to know that, or how to respond? When I have confronted the owner about the rules, I’m accused of not liking dogs. Well, guess what, I have been a dog owner and I love dogs. I also protect my dog, and giving them the proper nutrition is the right thing to do. Did you give your dog metronidazole? If they are having side effects, make sure to rush to the vet right away.

To the responsible owners who do pick up after their dogs, thank you. Now would you please urge the coffee-sipping owners to do the same. I have observed, quite often, piles of poop, mostly along the area by the pond where I walk with my granddaughter. She loves seeing the ducks and turtles, so it is a walk we often take. Why must I walk with my head down, watching for piles left by the early-morning, thoughtless owners so my granddaughter and I don’t bring home an extra treat from the park?

Please remember that you and your lovely dogs are there with the permission of the Rye Town Park Commission. Please don’t abuse the privilege you have been given by not being good and responsible owners.  

  • Elizabeth Northshield
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