Fairfield man starts petition about off-leash dogs at Lake Mohegan
FAIRFIELD — As of Saturday, 48 people have signed an online petition to have the off-leash policy for dogs at Lake Mohegan be changed.
The petition, which was started by a town resident on Thursday, has garnered 48 signatures in two days. The town resident is only identified on the page as Aaron M. In his description of the petition, he voiced his strong disapproval of the policy at Lake Mohegan — a public area — for dogs to be off-leash.
“The off leash dogs are not only an issue for non-dog owning residents trying to enjoy the area but also to the quality of the open space itself,” the resident said in the description.
He goes on to say that the amount of off-leash dogs at the park “greatly detracted from the beauty, enjoyment, and safety of a hiking area prized for the stunning features of the cascades, river, and lake.”
The petition creator said dog owners don’t follow park rules and that there is no one at the park to truly enforce the rules.
“When hiking with my children I cannot let them walk more than 10 feet from my side as I need to be close to ward off dogs whose owners are nowhere to be seen,” the description said.
Then, the description turns to environmental impacts, talking about dogs wandering off trail and damaging or killing vegetation and causing possible soil erosion.
Those who signed the petition expressed similar concerns about the area.
“I’m a dog lover, grew up with them my whole life, but the attitudes of some of the dog owners at the lake are deplorable,” Stephanie Johnson wrote when she signed the petition on Friday. “I sign for my son, an avid fisherman, who has been bulldozed more than once by people who’d impeded his space as if he had no right being there.”
John Pinto, who signed the petition on Thursday, said he supported it as a avid outdoorsman and dog owner.
“Some dog owners walk the lake as if they own it,” he wrote when he signed the petition. “They don’t pick up after their dog and/or they bag it and throw it off the trail. I have had several encounters, while fishing, that a dog would jump in the water in front of me.
The petition can be found here.