To: An Taisce, Phil Kearney
Stop the Dog Ban on Beaches
Do not ban dogs from beaches.
Why is this important?
Banning dogs from beaches will have a detrimental impact on locals and tourism.
The local community for beaches where dogs are banned will be forced to walk their dogs in other areas which may be unsafe, not have sidewalks or be pushed into walking their dogs at times they may not feel safe. As a young woman, I go out walking my dog alone and the beach is a place I feel safe.
The impact on the mental health of people with dogs will be massive. Not just for locals but for irish people travelling within ireland with a dog. Our dog is a part of our family. We take her with us everywhere and we love going on holiday with her. If she is banned from every beach then it would extremely hard to find places we can go.
This will also impact the tourism industry here in ireland. We have a huge caravan and Motorhome tourist community here. These tourists come to ireland because they can bring their dog. My parents bought a caravan specifically for their dog. Banning dogs from beaches will prevent alot of tourists from coming to ireland.
The number of dogs being surrendered, especially now after the pandemic has increased massively. Banning dogs from the one place where people love to bring their dog will lead to further surrenders and have an impact on the state.
Having a dog is a form of companionship for many people and can be life saving with regard to mental and physical health. Discrimination against people with dogs is unfair and ultimately could lead to further depression in society.
The claim for Banning dogs is that it is for hygiene reasons. However, half the beaches around ireland are closed during the summer due to water quality and this is not due to dog excrement, this is due raw sewage continuing to be dumped into itish waterways. Portmarnock beach is a blue flag beach that is frequently closed in the summer due to water quality and does not allow dogs. Rush beaches are hardly ever closed and allow dogs.
There is another way to prevent dog excrement that can be utilized not just on beaches but in parks and footpaths. DNA testing is a proven method for addressing this issue and would be more effective than a blanket ban.
Ultimately, if we ban dogs from beaches. What next? The park? The footpaths? No dogs allowed in ireland. Where does it end?
We bought a house in Rush specifically so we could go for walks on the beach with our dog. If she was banned. It would break my heart and buying a house in the current market was not easy feat.
Please don't let this happen all for a blue flag classification to fit into some European standard. We can have our own flagging system if its so important.