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Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Heading to a store or restaurant? Leave your dog at home.

To the Editor:

Unless your dog is a legitimate service animal, leave him/her at home. You are being very disrespectful to every other person who enters these establishments.

No matter how clean you keep your pooch, they are nasty and do carry diseases and other parasites. Don’t believe it? Look it up on the internet. When you put your pet in a grocery cart or other store cart, they are slobbering, shedding, and putting their nasty butt in places that other people are putting their food, clothes, other items, and children in. You have no right to impose this unknown health risk to others.

While in one of the Walmart’s in Ocala, we observed an inconsiderate person allowing their dog to defecate on the floor of the store. They were about to move on as if nothing had happened until they saw that several other patrons had seen what happened. One family came around the corner and without knowing the dog poo was on the floor, they pushed their shopping cart right through it and tracked it for several feet.

Your dog would be more comfortable at home in its own home environment than in a busy store. Anyone who does bring their dog into the stores, restaurants, and other public places – with the possible exception of PetSmart, Tractor Supply, or other such animal-related businesses – is simply inconsiderate and self-centered.

Anyone who orders a vest for their animal from the internet does not have a legitimate service animal, regardless of the label on the online-purchased vest. If your pet is not an ADA-certified service animal, leave it at home where it belongs.

J. David Griffin, Jr.
Dunnellon resident