Dogs make parks unpleasant

I like dogs, but over the past few months, I have noticed a serious increase in piles of dog excrement (I could use a stronger word) on the streets and parks of JP. I have done my best to avoid it on Green Street walking to the T, but occasionally I have stepped in it, come home with it on my shoes and tracked it into my apartment.

Now, I want to ask the dog owners of JP for help with this. I know that everyone who owns a dog (I don’t, but have friends who do) is not responsible for the mess. There are obviously some dog owners, however, who have neglected to pick up their dogs’ messes—leaving them to attract flies and stink up the neighborhood, especially in the summer when the sun and heat make the situation worse.

Last Friday morning, I took a walk around Jamaica Pond. There were people walking many cute dogs of all sizes, a few not on their leashes. Some of the owners were carrying plastic bags, which I assumed were to pick up the mess; some were not. Maybe some people think that their dogs are small and don’t make much of a mess, but it seems that the majority of the piles were created by smaller dogs. Maybe they think it helps the grass, but that is not true.

As I walked, I could not help but notice the dog messes scattered every
few feet along the pond’s dirt and grass areas. Some areas were more heavily laden than others, so I decided to start counting the piles of dried up and freshly laid dog mess as I walked. The total came to 120 piles.

I was feeling pretty ill after that walk and realized this was becoming a big problem. On Saturday, I returned to the pond and saw the animal control truck and an officer sitting near the Brookline entrance. I asked him if he was there to monitor the behavior of the dogs in the park. He explained he was there to make sure all dogs were leashed.

It is sad that runners, walkers and baby carriage wheelers have to dodge the dog mess in our park around the pond. I would think twice before planning a picnic on the grass, since you just don’t know what you might be sitting in. If this problem continues, it won’t be such a nice place to bring your children, relatives or friends for a walk. If we all take a moment to be more thoughtful and keep our park around Jamaica Pond free of dog mess, and anything else that should be disposed of in the trash cans, it will surely make a huge difference and then we can be proud to take our suburban friends and relatives for a walk around our beautiful Jamaica Pond.

Diane J. Pacitto
Jamaica Plain

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