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Complaints may cause ban of pets from conservation areas

Due to continued complaints, Quinte Conservation is considering prohibiting pets from all of its conservation areas.

Quinte Conservation areas may see the change if users continue to ignore the on-leash policy.

“We don’t want to, but it has come to the point where we are seriously considering prohibiting pets from all of our conservation areas,” said Terry Murphy, general manager. “We have been receiving so many complaints from visitors encountering off leash dogs at our conservation areas and of owners not cleaning up after their pets. A few years ago we had to close the off-leash trail at Potter’s Creek because a majority of dog owners were disrespecting our on-leash policy for the other trails.”

Murphy said it doesn’t matter how well-behaved your animal is, these are shared spaces used by other visitors, and home to all kinds of wildlife.

“Hikers will encounter other trail users, dogs and not to mention wildlife at any of our areas. It’s the safety of your dog that we are concerned about. How will you protect them if they come across a coyote or aggressive animal?”

Pet owners are also reminded to clean up after their pet. There is no garbage pick-up at any Quinte Conservation areas. Some dog owners have been leaving their pet’s waste in bags along the trails and in the parking lot.

“Not only is this polluting, it is a serious health concern to other animals and wildlife. One of the easiest and more environmentally friendly ways to clean up after your pet is to find a stick and flick away from the trail.”

Quinte Conservation areas are open to the public all year round from dawn until dusk.

Quinte Conservation is a community-based environmental protection agency. It serves 18 municipalities in the watersheds of the Moira, Napanee and Salmon Rivers and Prince Edward County. More information about Quinte Conservation is available at www.quinteconservation.ca.

Filed Under: Local News

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