People with dogs are supposed to keep them on a leash while in the Dundas Valley. Why? For many good reasons, like they might chase wildlife, or, like today, chase me.
I understand that your dog would not bite someone, well, at least that's what most dog-owners think when they let them of the leash in a park or on the trail.
Yet, you never can tell.
A woman who used to be my neighbour regularly walks her dog, sans leash, along the Cootes Drive path, and the Hamilton/Brantford Rail Trail.
I've cycled by them hundreds of times over the years, always say 'hello,' and without incident.
Until this morning. For some reason after passing them on the Rail Trail (after giving audible warning), and saying 'hello' - a few pedal strokes later I heard a growl and bark, and glanced down to the right to find the dog running full tilt and zeroing-in on my ankle/calf.
I picked up my pace to outrun the dog (fight or flight), which I managed to do after a short time of the dog keeping pace until s/he got tired and ended the chase.
I didn't go back to speak with the woman, but I suppose this tale is just to illustrate: you never know when an animal will pick up the chase, or, heaven forbid, attack and get hold of someone. Thus the stricture on dogs being kept on leash...
So to all the dog-walkers out there, if someone gets pissed at you for having your dog loose, try and understand their very legitimate concern. And remember too, if you are in the Conservation Area or on the Rail Trail, a leash is required!