Dog Activists Plan Weekend March to Block GGNRA Proposed Off-Leash Rules

By: Brian Shields - Thu, 19 May 2011 13:49:04 -0800

SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) -- People who love walking their dogs off leash in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area plan to take their pooches to the streets of San Francisco this weekend in advance of a deadline to comment on plants to restrict their access to the park.

The National Park Service has an end of the month deadline for the public to weigh in on a plan to limit off-leash dogs to much smaller areas of the park.  Dogs would have to be on leash in such areas as Ocean Beach, Fort Funston, Crissy Field, and Fort Mason.  

"It's really symbolizing what the new reality is if the National Recreation Area gets to ban most of the areas where people and their dogs like to walk in," Rally organizer David Emanuel said.

The rally will include a Saturday march starting at Great Highway and Sloat and ending at Stern Grove where there will be a "biscuit buffet" for dogs.

Supporters of the new rules say off-leash dogs are a danger to other park visitors and damage the environment.  Opponents say the rules will lead to overcrowding in other dog parks and hurt local businesses like professional dog walking services and pet supply retailers.

Emmanuel says organizers already have 10,000 signatures on a petition to Interior Secretary Ken Salazar opposing the new rules.  They hope to gather more such signatures over the next week and a half.

(Copyright 2011, KRON 4, All rights reserved.)
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