Dog Lady offers advice on property-trampling pooches, and why some dogs are so smelly.
Dear Dog Lady,
Can you please advise us as to what can be done to discourage dog owners from using our small front lawn for their pets' toilets?
Our front lawn is a beautiful array of blooming spring flowers such as daffodils, tulips and crocuses. The lawn is elevated about 8 to 10 inches from the sidewalk, but people walking their dogs will even lift their smaller animals to do their dirty business. It is unbelievable.
Just this morning I looked out to see a dog about the size of a small Shetland pony squatting. A smaller dog raced in circles while the flowers and new grass were being ripped out of the ground. A woman stood by with two empty leashes in her hand.
Is there a law that offending dog owners can be reported to the police for trespassing or for the violation of private property?
-- Don’t Tread On Me
The scene you describe raises the hackles of all responsible dog owners. When dogs trample on others’ property and clueless owners stand by holding leashes, it’s a hot mess.
For now, buy a tasteful “dogs keep off” sign and place it on your lawn. When you see trespassers, go out and politely ask the owner to move the animals. Don’t yell, because the strain will hurt you more than the person you’re yelling at.
If the same owner comes around again and again, call the police. Your front lawn is private. You have every right to report this. Take pictures and post them. Do you have Twitter or Facebook accounts? Shame by social network should have the desired chilling effect.
Dear Dog Lady,
After just taking our pit bull mix Max to the shop for a bath, he smells again about a week later. He has a well-balanced diet, gets his share of treats that are healthy, and has a walk each and every day for 30 to 45 minutes.
Why does he smell? I ask for the oatmeal baths and they help somewhat, but he still smells. The odor is not an earth shattering, “get-outta-the room” smell, but a smell nonetheless. Any ideas on what I can do to prevent this? I wash his bedding at least two times a month.
Dogs smell. They have a bouquet that’s stinky to some and ambrosial to others. Liver breath makes Dog Lady happy because it’s a reminder her dog is a dog.
You should take your pit bull mix to a veterinarian. Sometimes a foul-smelling dog is sick or allergic. The vet can run tests to determine if there’s an organic cause for Max’s malodorous condition. If your vet determines your dog is healthy and this is just him being him, make your peace with Max’s aroma. The more you bond, the more you will accept him for smelling like a dog. Remember, bathing Max too much can dry out his skin.
And it’s great you are walking your dog every day and giving him healthy treats. When you walk Max outside in the fresh air, your dog smells of springtime.
Monica Collins offers advice on dogs, life and love. Her website is www.askdoglady.com. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.