Don’t Overreact

Jun 28, 2017

To the Editor:

In response to the recent article and letter (“Dog Park Growls,” 6/21) about the Barnegat Light dog park, here are a few thoughts from taxpaying dog owners who have invested a good chunk of their life savings to own a home in Barnegat Light.

For guests and visitors:

Verbal abuse of public employees is simply not acceptable in Barnegat Light or anywhere.

Today’s approach to managing the dog park is based on intensive investigation and deliberation by our governing body. The previous “free and open” approach resulted in a unsanitary and dangerous situation (after-hours noise, dangerously deep holes, dog poop and at least one fist fight).   

Pass card systems and dog park permits are common – New Rochelle, Harrison and Dewey Beach are just a few examples. All require licensing and rabies certificates. All charge significantly more than Barnegat Light does.

The dog park changes have been well publicized. Homeowners and real estate agents for dog-friendly homes should be communicating these requirements.

There is a small but loud group of Barnegat Light residents who have been lobbying for closure of the dog park. Please don’t give them a reason ...

For neighbors:

We get it. An unused field is a quieter neighbor than a dog park. We thank those of you who responded constructively to the challenge by donating trees.  

The new rules go a long way to resolving past issues. Let’s give them a chance to work.

For town officials and employees:

Thanks for all the hard work on this!

Please don’t overreact to the early reaction to the changes – we love our dog park.

Maybe consider a solution that only requires proof of licensing (e.g. the tag on the dog’s collar)? Most dog licenses require proof of rabies vaccination.

Barnegat Light is a unique and special place. The dog park is an important part of that.

Rick and Debbie Merson

Barnegat Light



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