Dog owners reminded about licenses and leashes
FAIRFIELD — It’s not a totally leash-free life for dogs at Lake Mohegan, and Animal Control officials have been reminding dog owners of their responsibilities.
At the end of February, Animal Control Officer Paul Miller said because of an increase in calls for service, including dog attacks on both people and other dogs, they would conduct random enforcement of all state and local laws at all of the town parks where animals are permitted.
It would, Miller said, be a “zero tolerance” approach, with no one getting away with a simple warning, and it began at Lake Mohegan. While dogs are allowed off leash in the wooded areas of the open space, they must be on a leash within 100 feet of the parking lot. And if off-leash on the trails, dogs must be under the owner’s control.
A total of 31 tickets were issued to dog owners in the first few weeks at Lake Mohegan and the Cascades. Of those, 22 were for a failure to license, another six were for having an unleashed dog in an open space area, and three were for failure to have a rabies vaccination.
Last September, a local woman’s dog died from injuries it received when it was attacked by another dog at Lake Mohegan. The other dog’s owner was ticketed for having a roaming dog, a nuisance dog, and failure to license. The dog was also banned from all town open space and beaches.
Dogs are allowed off-leash, during the winter season, at Jennings Beach. While they are also allowed at other town beaches, they are supposed to be leashed. Dogs and horses, are not allowed at any of the beaches starting on April 1 until Sept. 30.
All dogs over 6 months of age are required to be licensed by July 1 of each year. The Town Clerk’s office begins licensing on June 1. For more information, visit www.fairfieldct.org/doglicense.
Lt. Robert Kalamaras said enforcement will continue at all town parks and open spaces, and Miller said his office will respond to complaints.
Anyone seeking specific information can contact the animal shelter at 203-254-4857. The shelter is located at 211 Richard White Way, and is open Monay through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday from 8 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.