On Tuesday the Seattle Animal Shelter announced that it will start conducting emphasis patrols on all salt water beaches in the city. The Shelter is initiating the patrols be because “Spring is a particularly important time to ensure that immature wildlife have their best opportunity to flourish in the Northwest.”
Dogs are not allowed on any of Seattle’s public saltwater beaches, whether leashed or unleashed. This law helps to protect the fragile ecosystem along our shorelines.
Marine mammals, such as seal pups who are typically born in April, use the city’s beaches to rest and warm themselves. Shore birds also frequent our beaches. Wildlife that interact with dogs are less likely to reach adulthood.
In past years off-leash dogs have chased or harassed wildlife, especially sea pups, at the beach in Lincoln Park in West Seattle. Just last month an off-leash dog almost got to a resting sea pup. And last year, an off-leash dog killed a sea pup there.
Myrtle Edwards Park, Golden Gardens, Alki, and Discovery Park are also popular areas in Seattle where people illegally let their dogs off-leash.
Uniformed animal services officers will be patrolling city parks with a focus on saltwater beaches and may issue citations to violators. The fine is $54.
If you would like to report Seattle beaches where dogs are frequently seen, please submit a service request at http://bit.ly/sas-service-request. You can also contact the shelter directly by calling 206-386-PETS (7387) or by visiting www.seattleanimalshelter.org.