Dogs in Pier Park?

Something that keeps coming up in discussion with the readers of pcbdaily are whether or not dogs should be allowed in the Pier Park retail areas. I can certainly understand the appeal of bringing our k-9 friends with us for a stroll down the boardwalk area of Pier Park – Simon has done a great job of creating large walk areas for strolling.

I’m a dog person, but I’ve never been one to bring my pet with me everywhere, but I know people who do.

This is a question for discussion, something may or may not come of this, but I wanted to open up the subject. Should dogs be allowed in the retail areas of Pier Park.
Several good points have been made:

  • Clean up: Not every owner picks up after their pet. Would a possible solution be to enforce some sort of fine/ticket if caught not scooping the poop? How would that be enforced? Would on-site security be able to “ticket” people with something that could be enforced by local municipalities?
  • Safety: Are all dogs safe in public places? Do all dogs love every fearless child that excitedly runs up expecting to pet the “puppy”. There could also be an issue between two or more dogs that may become unfriendly with one another.
  • Noise: Would more shoppers than not be bothered by the noise of a barking dog?
  • General comfort: What about those that are uncomfortable around dogs? Sure, they can steer clear of one if they see it, but should they have to?

These are just questions. I’m asking for the opinions of the reader. Personally I like dogs, but I’m unsure if it is appropriate to have them in a retail shopping environment.

Confirmed, Simon has in place a rule that mandates what kind of animals are permitted in the mall.  The sign states “Only service animals training to assist persons with disabilities are permitted within the Shopping Center.”

I’ve seen these signs, but frankly have not ever read them before now.  I can’t say that I’ve paid specific attention to whether security is ignoring the fact that people are walking their dogs up and down the boardwalk area of Pier Park, but I can say that security is all over that place on their trike-mobile and feel fairly confident that they have seen the dogs.  Maybe they are asking the owners to leave when they see them with their pets, I can’t say that I know this one way or another.

77 thoughts on “Dogs in Pier Park?

  1. Hmmmm. Perhaps you’re just in the minority and the folks who like dogs are just nicer people and have more friends?

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  2. Awwwwwwwwwwwwwww! MJ’s a sore loser. Dude, we dog people (and we ARE in the majority) have large address books full of other people who like dogs.

    Silly!

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  3. William, if you called all your friends and asked them to vote in this poll, then you are most certainly a nicer person than I. No question about it. I would imagine that you even have all of your 4-legged friends voting in the poll.

    So you are successful at skewing a poll:
    Congratulations!

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  4. Actually, the way you skew a poll is to think up what answer you want from it, then let only like-minded people know about it. Sorry we screwed that up for you MJ.

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  5. What’s sad is that when you saw that you were running in the minority in the poll, you wouldn’t let it run its course naturally, you were compelled to recruit people from all over the place to vote, so that you would be the “winners”.

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  6. I like going to the beach and then getting a cold beer at the Hoffbrau. Everyone there loves my min pin. What’s the prob?

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  7. Be sure to show up with all 35+ of your friends AND with all of your dogs. And then we’ll see how long it takes before the management of Pier Park starts enforcing the rules.

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  8. I love dogs and think they should be allowed at Pier Park. Good grief, why would be ban all dogs due to one or two owners being inconsiderate. If that were the rule, then spring breakers, smokers, etc. should be banned also. And there’s a LOT more of those types frequenting our beaches and Pier Park.

    Signed,
    Mike “Dogs Rule” Monahan

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  9. Aloud, honest mistake. That’s what I get for criticizing someone else’s mistake, and for not slowing down to get things done.

    The poll has been tampered with.

    This is just a pcbdaily poll. Nothing will be changed by this, and voting repeatedly is just childish, but actually somewhat comical. I was looking at the log and found 36 votes for “yes” from one cookie-logged ip address; meaning that it wasn’t multiple people on the same network but votes from one computer.

    There was not one ip address duplication in the “no” answer.

    I’m just confused as to why someone would actually waste their time hitting “yes” 36 times.

    Actually, I’m flattered.

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  10. The idea behind the comments feature is to promote productive discussion. This post is going down hill fast. If we can’t get back in line, I’m going to shut comments down and others that would like to contribute will not be able to.

    I love dogs, I’ve actually been itching for a puppy for quite some time, and my kids love dogs, but the timing is not right for our family to have one. If we owned a pet, I can’t say that I wouldn’t want to bring him/her for a walk in Pier Park also.

    I understand that much of this hinges on personal owner responsibility. I’m afraid that not all owners are as responsible as the majority of you. One of the motivations for this post was an almost dangerous encounter in Pier Park with my children and an unfriendly pit-bull that was not as happy to see my kids as my kids were to see him. As a parent, I know not all animals feel ok about kids running up to them, and I try to teach my children to always ask the owner from a distance before they approach. However, it only takes one mistake for someone to get hurt, and you can be darn sure that the safety of my children will always come before the safety of your pet.

    I’m also nervous when people start comparing dogs to children like they are in the same category. I think that if you are that troubled about children, I’d rather not be close to you either, kindly tell me and I’ll ask to be moved.

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  11. It is certainly disturbing to see such “polite” people equating children with dogs. Even with my own kids, I had the sense when they were little, to know that it was best not to take them to some places.

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  12. Look, all it takes is one second for you as a parent to look away, and your child could be run over by a car, engulfed in a rip tide, kidnapped by an evil person, stung by a stingray, hit by lightning and – yes – bitten by a dog. But we don’t ban all of the other things, so why ban dogs? Be a responsible parent, and teach your child not to run into traffic, swim alone, talk to strangers, stand in a field during a lightning storm and run up to unfamiliar dogs. Then you’ll have no worries at Pier Park — or anywhere else.

    And FYI — how you feel about people who don’t like kids is absolutely the way I feel about people who “like dogs, but….”

    Signed,

    Mike “Keep your kid on a leash in the back yard” Monahan.

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  13. Mike,
    If you’re talking to me, I never said that I don’t like dogs. Don’t assume that just because someone doesn’t think that dogs should be allowed in retail/dining areas means that he doesn’t like dogs.

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  14. Hello all. Look, I love my kids and grandkids more than life itself. They grew up with animals, some potentially dangerous. This enriched their lives and provided a tremedous learning experience. Now, my grandkids beg me to take them to Friday Fest and Pier Park, just so they can experience the dogs! I spent $400 at Pier Park last time I was there, while my husband and the kids enjoyed the outdoor “lifestyle concept’ and petted the occasional dog (with the permission of the owner, of course).
    Don’t wish for someone to take this wonderful experience from everyone around you. You can’t legislate every experience away from people in the name of safety or health. To the person whose child has allergies, my heart goes out to you because if he is that sensitive, why, I have a sweater I bought in Peru that would give him trouble. I hope that you will take advantage of the wonderful advances in medicine to find him the right medication so that he can enjoy the world we live in.

    People are going to own pets, and they will be outdoors with them (dogs have to be walked somewhere!),and the trend is that more and more will be traveling with them, and dining with them (outdoors, as allowed in Florida). If you try to deprive your children of that experience, then you’ll have to avoid Orlando, Jacksonville, Tampa and Miami, which have all gone pet-friendly with outdoor experiences for diners and their pets. I welcome it! Case closed.

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  15. I’m sure your dogs are great and I understand that they are a part of your family, but I don’t think that any human child should have to be medicated to indulge some people who want to take their dogs out everywhere. I don’t think I’ve seen anyone on here say that there should be no public areas for dogs and no place to walk them. I’ve said just the opposite, in fact.

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  16. I think MJ repeatedly responding in the negative to every single comment is the verbose equivalent of someone hitting the enter key repeatedly. MJ, give it up.

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  17. MJ — kids aren’t medicated to “indulge” people. Kids are medicated because they have a medical problem. Should we ban smoking in outdoor areas because I have asthma? No — I just walk around the cloud of smoke. Should a whole classroom be disrupted by a kid with ADHD just because of that child’s medical problem? Should we ban peanut butter just because my child is allergic to it?

    Face it, people with specific medical problems must make decisions every day how to manage them. It’s not up to the public at large to give up specific freedoms so that they don’t have to.

    Otherwise, we’d lowering our standards to some lowest common denominator every time someone has a specific problem. We’d ban driving because some people speed. We’d be banning alcoholic beverages because some people choose to overindulge and harm their health. We’d ban smoking because some kid with asthma might walk through the smoke.

    Stop using alarmism as a ridiculous rationalization for your personal mores. It just doesn’t pass the “sniff test.”

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  18. Smoking actually has been banned in outside areas in many public places; Disneyworld, for example. Designated smoking areas are available at Disney. You can’t just walk around and smoke at Disney.

    Likewise, alcoholic beverages are not allowed in many public places. Most Florida State Parks, for example, do not allow them.

    Pier Park, like Disney World, is a privately owned complex, and they have a right to make “no animals” rules.

    I’m sorry, but you can’t compare people having a right to drive to people having a right to take their dogs anywhere. And having ADHD is not the same as having an allergy to dogs.

    Roger, at least I didn’t vote 36+ times. But you have a point. I won’t say anything else unless someone addresses me.

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