Seattle is often thought to be a pretty dog-friendly city. (DogTime places it at #2 on their list.) Nine months of living here, however, does not have me convinced. Here are a few of my biggest complaints:
1. Chicken Bones
For a city that is so conscious of its environmental impact, Seattle seems to have no idea of the impact a chicken bone can have on the environment of a dog's stomach. If only I earned a dollar for each slimy, disgusting chicken bone that I had to pry from a stubborn dog's mouth; I'd have so many dollars. I think some people get so caught up in their oneness with the Earth or whatever that they imagine their rejected bones decomposing right where they left them and turning into flowers. Instead, a happy dog thinks he won the lottery as he cracks those bones right in half, and they perforate his digestive system. If his family is fortunate, they are left with enormous medical bills. If. They. Are. Fortunate.
2. Teeny, Tiny Parking Spaces
I realize that I can't possibly know all dog-people personally, but I definitely know a lot of them. As a result, I feel very confident when I say that dog-people don't drive tiny cars. (Exceptions may be made for dog-people with tiny dogs.) This is especially true for dog-people who do all the stuff that Seattle likes to brag about: hiking, fishing, boating, camping. Those people aren't driving Smart cars, so why does Seattle seem to only think about compact cars when designing parking lots? And these "non-compact" spaces are another issue altogether. I frequently have no more than a couple of inches on either side of the Jeep, if I can even find a space at all. Get on it, Seattle.
3. Off-leash Dogs
I know I'm not the only one bothered by this one, because people in my neighborhood's forum have brought it up as well. It's really great for you if your dog is well enough trained to be off leash, but it's still illegal. It doesn't matter how friendly your dog is. It matters how unfriendly another dog might be. Keeping your dog leashed is not only logical and responsible for your own dog, it allows reactive, fearful or ill dogs to experience the world without fear that they may have interaction forced upon them. Let's all be a little more respectful to dogs with unique needs.
4. Stop Sign Runners
Every city and town deals with drivers who ignore stop signs. Seattle is not special. As a dog walker, though. I feel like I encounter them more than the average citizen. Annoyingly enough, a high percentage of them seem to be the Teslas that Seattle is teeming with. Good for you - you're saving the environment. Too bad you're murdering your neighbors. Do you realize how much CO2 my corpse will emit as it decomposes? Too frequently, a smug neo-hippie will slam on his electric car's brakes exactly where my body would have been if I'd been foolish enough to exercise my right-of-way.
5. Doggie Racism