Letters to the Editor, Aug. 9

No place for a dog run

According to the article, “Dog owners bite back” (T&V, July 26), Stuyvesant Town tenant Bill Oddo wants a designated dog area – better known as a dog run – located on the property so that his dog and the other dogs living here can have a place to exercise.

Anyone who’s ever seen a dog run knows how noisy they can be given the natural – and inevitable – barking, howling and yelping of dogs as they play and frolic.

Ironically, Mr. Oddo was a major driving force spearheading the protest against the ice skating rink in Stuyvesant Town this past winter because he was concerned – and understandably so – about the noise the rink would generate since it was located next to the building he lives in. So, the noise from the ice skating rink disturbing nearby tenants was a cause for much concern, but the noise from a dog run disturbing nearby tenants is not?

Having a dog run in either Stuyvesant Town or Peter Cooper Village is simply not realistic or appropriate since there is no area in which to locate it where the tenants of the nearby buildings would not be adversely affected by its presence. Given the fact that every apartment here is allowed to have two dogs, if just a small percentage of the 11,000+ apartments had even one dog – let alone two – and brought it to a dog run located on the property the noise created would be unbearable. In fact, the way that sound carries around here, it would only take a very few barking, howling and yelping dogs to disrupt the quiet enjoyment of their homes that tenants are entitled to by law.

Dog owners living in ST/PCV, please be respectful, considerate neighbors and exercise your dogs in one of the nearby, legal dog runs located in Stuyvesant Square Park and Tompkins Square Park that are situated in areas where the noise and activity won’t bother anyone. Yes, it means that you have to exert yourselves somewhat, but that’s the price that people everywhere all over the city pay to provide exercise for their dogs and not disturb their neighbors. Hopefully, you think your dog is worth the effort.

A. Miller, ST

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The Soapbox: What about positive effects of dogs?

This column was submitted by Randi Sinel of Styuyvesant Town re: “Barking mad about doggie toilets,” Letter, T&V, July 6

Excuse me for not having specific numbers, but I believe there are more than 20+ playgrounds designed for children to play in. The number of no-dog areas has grown exponentially – I just walked my dog in the courtyard at 20th and First and counted at least five no-dog areas. There is one particularly beautiful, fenced-off, grassy area that is larger than the size of all of the other grassy areas in the courtyard combined. It amazes me that dog-hating tenants refuse to simply take advantage of the tremendous number of ST land that has been put aside solely for their use, but instead, choose to focus on the areas not dedicated to them but shared with the dog owners. What? Other people shouldn’t be happy too?

In case you did not know, there is not one solitary piece of land in ST/PCV that would protect us (dog owners) from the venom spewed on us by the miserable minority. And the overwhelming majority of dog owning tenants follow the rules and are equally upset (and quite vocal) with dog owners who do not. Continue reading

Op-Ed: Why dog rules were stepped up

By Sean Sullivan
General Manager, PCVST

Since I became general manager of Peter Cooper Village-Stuyvesant Town in May, it has been a great pleasure getting to know the people of this community, and hearing ideas and concerns about ways to make PCVST equally enjoyable for everyone.  One area of discussion that arouses particularly strong passion is our policy regarding dogs.  While we certainly welcome dog owners and recognize how appealing the PCVST campus is for dog walking, we’ve also heard strong feedback from residents who felt that there was a lack of clarity about where dogs can or can’t walk, and that dog owners weren’t always following — or aware of — rules that have been established to maintain peace, safety and public health.

After careful consideration, PCVST management decided to launch an initiative to step up enforcement of our dog policy.  These are designed to enable PCVST public safety staff to better enforce its existing dog policy as part of an ongoing effort to improve quality of life standards for the PCVST community.

Pets were first allowed on the property in 2008 and were originally restricted to a maximum weight of 80 pounds.  In May of this year, PCVST management reduced the size limit from 80 lbs. to 50 lbs. in response to concerns from residents.

Those who registered dogs weighing over 50 lbs. prior to May 2012 are exempt from the 50 lb. restriction, and receive special registration tags that indicate this distinction. Public safety officers will issue notices to PCVST residents and others who violate dog policies. Those who repeatedly receive written quality of life violations will face legal action up to and including lease termination.  Non-residents walking dogs on the property will be asked to leave immediately.

Our goal is always to ensure that PCVST is a safe, clean environment for everyone who lives here.  This requires both the cooperation of residents in treating their neighbors with courtesy, and the support of management in making sure that there are consequences for failing to abide by our community standards.

While most of our dog owners follow the rules and are respectful, we do receive complaints about dog owners who violate the rules.  This new system is designed to create an enhanced level of accountability for dog owners and give us improved documentation, which will enable us to take action when necessary.

Since launching this initiative, PCVST management has been very pleased, both with resident cooperation and with the positive feedback we have received.