The majority of dog owners who walk their dogs at the Salmon Arm foreshore are being responsible, but the number of those who aren’t has grown in the past year.
Monitoring in 2018 was done both by Nature Centre summer students conducting 47 surveys during a variety of times, as well as people reporting to the Shuswap Trail Report Hotline.
A written report on dog monitoring at the Foreshore Trail notes that of 1,075 people who used the trail during survey times between June 21 and Aug. 28, 2018, a total of 120 dogs with trail users were observed.
Of those, 26 were not adhering to the bylaw. Twelve were off-leash, 14 were on leashes longer than two metres and one was in a restricted area – off the main trail on the boardwalk. Just three incidents of dog feces on the trail were spotted, however, a distinct improvement over the year before.
Percentage-wise, on-leash compliance was 90 per cent, down eight per cent from 2017; restricted-area compliance was 99 per cent, up seven per cent from 2017; and ‘feces’ compliance was 97.5 per cent, up 14.5 per cent over 2017.
Reports to the Shuswap Trail Report Hotline “increased significantly over 2017 with 25 non-compliant dogs,” states a document prepared for the City of Salmon. Just one complaint was received in 2017.
The hotline received reports of 15 dogs off-leash, six on the trail during the nesting closure from April 15 to June 15, and 12 off-trail in restricted areas. One long-leash report was also received.
The Foreshore Trail dog monitoring report concludes that “on-leash and overall compliance dropped notably in 2018” and corrective actions are required.
Although the report, with several recommendations, was included in the March 11 agenda package for city council, council members voted to defer discussion of it or decisions on it until they could speak with Phil McIntyre-Paul, who prepared it.