Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Scofflaws No More

The picture below, which shows William with his "cousin" Turner (cousin by adoption and twice or thrice removed), was taken in Henry Hudson Riverfront Park summer before last. Whodathunk that these sweet dogs and the upstanding humans who accompanied them (pockets stuffed with poop bags) were breaking the law? 

Chapter 70-4 of the Hudson City Code states: "It shall be unlawful for an owner of a dog in the City of Hudson to permit or allow such . . . to be present at any time at the Riverfront Park." Strictly speaking (or so it seems from the placement of that prepositional phrase), I, "an owner of a dog in the City of Hudson," was breaking the law. My niece, visiting from Michigan with her husband, son, and Chesapeake Bay retriever puppy, may not have been. But soon, all dogs on leashes, accompanied by humans prepared to pick up after them, will be free to enjoy riverfront park legally.

At their meeting on Wednesday night, the members of the Common Council Legal Committee present (John Friedman [chair], Don Moore, Bart Delaney, and David Marston) unanimously agreed to move forward a resolution that would strike Chapter 70-4 from the code and "authorize people to lawfully walk dogs at Henry Hudson Waterfront [sic] Park." The resolution would also bring the city code into conformity with the Americans with Disabilities Act "by prohibiting the City Clerk from charging a person with a disability a fee for licensing a service animal or from requiring documentation, such as proof that the animal has been certified, trained, or licensed as a service animal or inquiring as to the extent or nature of a person's disability prior to issuing a license for such animal."

The resolution will be introduced on Monday, February 10, and be voted on by the full Council on Tuesday, February 18. February 2014 may be a great month for the law-abiding dogs of Hudson!


  1. Is this on-leash, and/or off-leash?

    1. The resolution says "to lawfully walk their dogs." The law in Hudson requires dogs to be on leashes and humans to pick up after them--unless they are on their owner's property. Those requirements remain in force at riverfront park.

  2. This is fine, but Riverfront Park is now going to be filled with dog poop, and unleashed dogs, which will spoil the park for everyone.

  3. Good for the Council. Changing the law to allow dogs in the park is correct. Enforcing the laws regarding dogs off leash and picking up poop is imperative. Everyone(almost) has a cell phone. Call the police, take a photo. Almost everyone has a dog - they must be able to go with their people!

  4. I agree Debby...So then people without pets who enjoy the park, have to put up with those who break the rules because their "fido" is not in need of a leash...What about folks who are allergic? or are intimidated by canines? A doggie park seems in order to me

  5. Service/help dogs SHOULD be certified with proper training and paperwork...This sounds like a way to get around the fact that they are NOT service dogs and get clearance to bring any/all dogs into public places.