Human behavior and dog-friendliness

It seems weekly we read about how wonderfully friendly the Durango area is toward dogs. I have begun to question this idealistic statement.

My wife and I live on County Road 213, just south of Home Depot. We own and hunt with Plott bear dogs. This breed is well-known in Appalachia for courage and its ability to bring dangerous game to bay, such as bear, mountain lion and wild boar. It is one of the few breeds developed in this country and is the state dog of North Carolina. Additionally, they make wonderful babysitters for children and are fond of monopolizing the couch.

As the weather has warmed, we have noticed a disturbing and increasing trend among cyclists and pedestrians. Some – thankfully not all – have taken to teasing the dogs by howling at them as they bark from behind their fence. Plotts can be very loud, and this has led to others stopping and trespassing to scream at the dogs to shut up. This, of course, escalates the dogs.

For a community that boasts such a dog-friendly environment, the behavior of some residents suggests this is nothing but propaganda. I would simply ask cyclists and others to quietly pass. We keep our dogs on our property and expect to be left in peace by cyclists and pedestrians.

Ean McCormick

Durango

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