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08/06/2020 – Volunteer LI-DOG Website Assistants Wanted

ComputerDog volunteer Logo 

Volunteer LI-DOG Website Assistants Wanted!

 

Would you like to volunteer to help keep LI-DOG’s website as the go-to site for Long Island dog owners looking for fun places to go with their dogs? If yes, and you know the basics of the Windows, MAC or Linux operating systems and how to work with WordPress, we would like to hear from you!

We are looking to build a small team of volunteers who can assist our webmaster. A successful team member would also need a rudimentary knowledge of HTML, CSS, PHP and SEO techniques. In addition, the volunteer should be able to learn how to install and work with a virtual server like Wamp, Mamp or Lamp.

Our webmaster would be happy to help anyone who is interested in volunteering. If you are interested, or know someone who would like to help LI-DOG, email us at admin@lidog.org! Thanks!


.07/30/2020 – Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Extended Thru 2020

 

Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Extended Thru 2020!

In a decision that allows people to walk their dogs on-leash in Heckscher Park through the end of the year, the Huntington Town Board voted unanimously on July 21st to extend the Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program through Dec. 2020. Thank you to everyone who sent emails and called the Town Board in support of the program! To get the details, go to Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Extended Thru 2020! 

 


07/30/2020 – Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Extended Thru 2020

 

Allison Tuch Palmer and Her Pups Photo Credit: Sue Toomey Johnson

Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Extended Through Year End 2020!

Thanks to everyone who emailed and called in support of leashed dogs in Heckscher Park!

 

In a decision that allows people to walk their dogs on-leash in Heckscher Park through the end of the year, the Huntington Town Board voted unanimously July 21st to extend the Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program through Dec. 2020. The decision came on a resolution introduced by Councilwoman Joan Cergol who has championed the pilot program and was co-sponsored by Councilman Eugene Cook. Thank you, Councilwoman Cergol and all your colleagues on the Huntington Town Board, for supporting the pilot program! (If you’d like to thank the Town Board, see contact information below.)

Thank you, also, to our colleague Karen Thomas who started the petition that made the pilot program possible and now leads the volunteer Park Ambassadors who spread the word about the plot program in the park and the rules designed to make sure the program continues to be successful. Thank you Park Ambassadors: Michelle Troiano Dodd, Wendy Tullo (who also spoke at the Town Board meeting by Zoom), Sharyn Julino, Laurence Foray, Erich Preis, Elizabeth Madden, Loary Milanese Gunn and Michelle Factor Noonan!

In addition, thank you to all our fellow dog owners and Huntington residents who emailed and called the Town Board in support of leashed dogs in Heckscher Park. We were told the Town Board received “numerous emails” in support of the pilot program. Thank you, all!!

Councilwoman Cergol’s resolution was accompanied by a Report from the Park Ambassadors, which made the following key points:

  • Dog owners are following the rules by picking up after their dogs and keeping them on-leash.
  • The daily dog population is low—typically under 10 dogs throughout the park at any time—and is expected to remain low during the hot summer months and while COVID-19 restrictions remain in place and large scale events are not permitted.
  • The paths are cleaner as goose droppings have been reduced due to the presence of dogs.
  • Most non-dog owners seem happy with dogs in the park and any earlier trepidation has evolved into acceptance of the program.
    •  Key to that development has been the responsiveness of an Oversight Committee convened by Councilwoman Cergol and her staff which includes representatives from LI-DOG, volunteer Park Ambassadors, the Town’s Public Safety and Animal Control division, and representatives from the Citizens Advisory Committee for Persons with Disabilities. The members of the Oversight Committee have been responsive to any and all issues raised by the community and will continue to closely monitor the pilot program, the resolution noted. “Councilwoman Cergol has done a terrific job responding to any issues that might interfere with the success of the pilot program,” LI-DOG President Ginny Munger Kahn noted.

The report also includes half a dozen testimonials from park goers in support of allowing leashed dogs in Heckscher Park. To read these great comments, go to Testimonials from Parkgoers.

Finally, the Park Ambassadors Report includes the recommendation that the one-way signs around the pond, which were put in place to facilitate social distancing, be reversed so that they reflect the direction people typically walk—counterclockwise starting at Madison Street. The one-ways signs and continuing efforts by Park Ambassadors to encourage people not to congregate on the paths should result in better compliance with social distancing guidelines, noted LI-DOG in an Email to the Town Board Support Resolution thru Year End.

LI-DOG is asking all dog owners to please remember to yield to other park goers on the paths, as specified in the  Rules for Heckscher Dog Pilot Program, and to avoid congregating on the path so that others may pass safely. Thank you for your help!

If you haven’t already thanked the members of the Huntington Town Board for their support for the leashed dog pilot program, email or call them today!

Huntington Town Board Member Contacts:

Hon. Chad A. Lupinacci, Supervisor, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3030 clupinacci@huntingtonny.gov

Hon. Joan Cergol, Councilwoman, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3173 JCergol@huntingtonny.gov (Thank Councilwoman Cergol for all her work on behalf of dog owners!)

Hon. Eugene Cook, Councilman, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3174 ECook@HuntingtonNY.gov

Hon. Mark Cuthbertson, Councilman, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3172 MCuthbertson@HuntingtonNY.gov

Hon. Edmund J.M. Smyth, Councilman, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3175 ESmyth@HuntingtonNY.gov

 

Thank you for your support!


.07/08/2020 – Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Up for Vote!

Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Extension Up for Vote July 21st!

After more than six months of successful operation, the pilot program allowing leashed dogs in Huntington’s Heckscher Park is up for renewal at the Tues., July 21st virtual Huntington Town Board meeting. This time, the Town Board will vote on extending the pilot program another five months through the end of the year! Please support on-leash dog walking in Heckscher Park by emailing or calling the members of the Huntington Town Board today. For contact information and details, go to Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Up for a Vote! 

 


07/08/2020 – Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Up for Vote!

 

Allison Tuch Palmer with Andi and AJay Photo Credit: Sue Toomey Johnson

Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Extension Up for Vote July 21st!

 

Please Support the Resolution to Renew the Pilot Program Thru Year End 2020

After more than six months of successful operation, the pilot program allowing leashed dogs in Huntington’ s Heckscher Park is up for renewal at the Tues., July 21st Huntington Town Board Meeting. At the meeting, which will be held virtually at 7 p.m. and allow public comments, the Town Board will vote on extending the pilot program for five more months through the end of 2020. Until now, the renewals have run for three months or less.

The resolution to extend the pilot program is being introduced by Councilwoman Joan Cergol who has led the effort to allow leashed dogs in Heckscher Park on the Town Board. The resolution notes that the pilot program has already been renewed by the Town Board three times and that an oversight committee consisting of Town representatives, LI-DOG, volunteer Park Ambassadors, and other organizations has been responsive to any and all issues raised by the community. The members of the oversight committee support extending the pilot program through the end of the year, notes an accompanying report. (Read LI-DOG’s Email to Town Board Support Resolution thru YearEnd.)

Dog owners are happy and grateful to be able to enjoy Heckscher Park with their four-legged companions, added LI-DOG and colleague Karen Thomas, leader of the Park Ambassadors who hand out flyers and spread the word about the pilot program to other dog owners. Among their key points:

  • The pilot program has been running smoothly over each of its renewal periods.
  • Dog owners are following the rules including picking up after their dogs and keeping them on-leash. (Get the Card Flyer with Rules.)
  • The paths are cleaner as goose droppings have been reduced due to the presence of dogs.
  •  The daily dog population is low—typically under 10 dogs throughout the park at any time—and is expected to remain low during the hot summer months and while COVID-19 restrictions remain in place and large scale events are not permitted.
  • Any concerns raised by town residents will continue to be addressed by the oversight committee.

The report also includes half a dozen testimonials from parkgoers expressing their support for the pilot program. To see photos and read their terrific comments, go to Parkgoer Testimonials.

Want to add your voice to those who support leashed dogs in Heckscher Park? Email or call Huntington Town Board members today and let them know how YOU feel about being able to walk your dog on-leash in Huntington’s beautiful Heckscher Park! (See contact information below.)

The report also recommends that the one-way signs around the pond, which were put in place to facilitate social distancing, be reversed so that they reflect the direction people typically walk—counterclockwise starting at Madison Street.

As always, please remember to yield to other park goers on the path, as specified in the Rules for the Pilot Program, and avoid congregating on the path so others may pass safely.

What You Can Do: The pilot program is working well, but it’s very important Town Board members hear from those who support its extension. Let the Huntington Town Board know what it means to YOU to be able to enjoy Heckscher Park with your dog! Email or call the Huntington Town Board TODAY and urge them to support the extension of the Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program!

Huntington Town Board Member Contacts:

Hon. Chad A. Lupinacci, Supervisor, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3030 clupinacci@huntingtonny.gov

Hon. Joan Cergol, Councilwoman, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3173 JCergol@huntingtonny.gov (Remember to thank Councilwoman Cergol for all her work on behalf of dog owners!)

Hon. Mark Cuthbertson, Councilman, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3172 MCuthbertson@HuntingtonNY.gov

Hon. Edmund J.M. Smyth, Councilman, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3175 ESmyth@HuntingtonNY.gov

Hon. Eugene Cook, Councilman, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3174 ECook@HuntingtonNY.gov

Thank you for your support!


.03/16/2020 – COVID-19: INFORMATION FOR PET OWNERS


picture of sick dog
Photo © Michael Pettigrew

COVID-19: INFORMATION FOR PET OWNERS

The CDC and the American Veterinary Medical Association have published information concerning the effect of covid-19 on pets. Click on the links below to view these important documents.

AVMA on Covid 19 and Pets

SARS-CoV-2 in Animals

COVID-19 and Animals Frequently Asked Questions

Managing People With COVID-19 in Home Care Who Have Pets

If You Have COVID-19 and Animals


.04/02/2020 – Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Extended

 

View over Pond Towards Trees in Heckscher Park

Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Extended through June 30th!

The Huntington Town Board voted unanimously March 31st to extend the pilot program allowing leashed dogs in Huntington’s Heckscher Park. The vote came on a resolution sponsored by Councilwoman Joan Cergol and seconded by Councilman Gene Cook. The program has been running since Jan. 1st and must be renewed every three months. In a letter urging the Town Board to support the extension, LI-DOG and Huntington dog owner and park ambassador Karen Thomas noted the pilot program has been running successfully and is working as envisioned by the Town Board when it approved leashed dogs on a test basis last fall. For details, go to Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Extended!

 


04/02/2020 – Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Extended

 

View over Pond Towards Trees in Heckscher Park

Photo Credit: Karen Thomas

Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Extended through June 30th!

 

By 5-0, the Huntington Town Board voted March 31st to extend the pilot program allowing leashed dogs in Huntington’s Heckscher Park until June 30th. The vote came on a resolution sponsored by Councilwoman Joan Cergol and seconded by Councilman Gene Cook at a Town Board meeting held virtually because of the coronovirus outbreak. The pilot program, which was created by a resolution sponsored by Councilwoman Cergol last October, has been running successfully since Jan. 1st. It must be renewed every three months.

The pilot program runs in conjunction with a public education effort assisted by LI-DOG. That public education effort includes a cadre of volunteers in the park—park ambassadors—who hand out flyers with the rules for the pilot program and answer questions from dog owners and others.

In a letter urging the Town Board to support the extension of the pilot program, LI-DOG and Huntington dog owner and park ambassador Karen Thomas noted that the pilot program has been successful and is working as envisioned by the Town Board when it approved leashed dogs on a test basis last fall.

The letter notes that representatives from the Town’s Dept. of Public Safety and the Animal Control Division have reported their officers are doing their regular patrols and viewing live cameras in the park and there have been no problems with dogs. Those reports are supported by LI-DOG’s own reporting and notes from our and our park ambassadors’ almost daily visits to the park. That information is available in a summary report compiled by Thomas on behalf of LI-DOG. Among the key findings are:

  • Most dog owners are aware of the rules and/or have heard about the pilot program rules through news reports. (Get the Card Flyer with the Rules.)
  • Dog owners are following the rules and are willing to help pass the word about the rules to others.
  • Off-leash dogs are a rare occurrence. During the first three months of the pilot program, park ambassadors saw only two or three dogs off-leash. Once dog owners were asked to comply with the rules, they did.
  • Dog waste is not a problem. Dog owners are being responsible about picking up after their dogs. Some dog or goose waste was found in the park a few times and was picked up by park ambassadors.
  • Goose droppings have been reduced and the paths appear cleaner because of the presence of dogs. This development will continue to be monitored as the weather turns warmer.
  • A concern about dogs on park benches has been addressed with a new rule that dogs are not permitted on any benches in Heckscher Park.
  • The dog population is not excessive. Generally, we have observed three to ten dog owners and their dogs in the park at any one time.

Other observations:  

  • Many dog owners have told park ambassadors how happy and excited they are to be able to bring their dogs to Heckscher Park and they are hoping the pilot program will be renewed.
  • Families with small children and dogs in tow are now able to enjoy the park together.
  • Senior citizens and others who used to have to walk their dogs on nearby busy streets are now able to walk their dogs in the park, which is safer.
  • Even on cold, gray days in January and February when the park normally would have been deserted, two or three people can be seen walking their dogs.
  • Many of us have met new friends and neighbors in the park as a result of our mutual interest and affection for dogs.

The report notes that some dog owners do need to be reminded to keep the paths clear and allow others to pass when they are distracted or talking to other dog owners. That is especially true now given the social distancing rules—a minimum of 6’ apart from other people– to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. LI-DOG said it will refocus its public education efforts on reminding people not to congregate on the paths going forward.

The letter also recommended a few additional steps to enhance the pilot program.

  1. Specific “No Dogs Allowed” signs on the gates to the playground. (Councilwoman Cergol’s aides have already confirmed these signs will be added.
  2.  Brochure dispensers installed on or near the dog waste bag stations. This is a recommendation from the representative for the Citizens Advisory Committee for People with Disabilities. This is a good idea, so even if volunteer park ambassadors are not in the park handing out flyers, people can take a flyer any time and see the rules.
  3. The dog waste bag stations need to be monitored and refilled on a regular basis (probably once a month) as we have noticed the dispensers have been empty a few times. While dog owners are expected to bring their own waste bags on their walks, providing waste bags on a consistent basis is a good incentive to clean up for anyone who forgets to bring a bag.

 

In closing, LI-DOG and Thomas noted that dog owners are excited and happy with the pilot program. Given how important being able to walk their dogs in Heckscher Park is, and aided by the ongoing public education effort, “we are confident we will continue to see good compliance with the rules. We urge [the Town Board] to support the extension of the pilot program,” the email concludes. (Read the full LI-DOG Email Please Support Heckscher Park Pilot Program Extension.)

What You Can Do:  Please help make sure the pilot program continues to work successfully this spring. Make sure to follow the rules: pick up after your dogs, keep dogs on-leash and under control (maximum 6-ft and no retractables); yield to other park users on the paths; and keep dogs off the benches.

Moreover, please pay special attention to the rules in place to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, specifically the rules requiring everyone to maintain a distance from other people of at least 6 feet. That means no congregating on the pathways and no blocking other people’s ability to social distance as well.

Finally, if you appreciate having the opportunity to walk your dog in Heckscher Park, especially at this time of unprecedented concern and social isolation, let Councilwoman Cergol and other members of the Town Board know. It’s important they hear from people who support allowing leashed dogs in Heckscher Park!

Huntington Town Board members to call or send emails to with your support for the Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program:

Hon. Chad A. Lupinacci, Supervisor, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3030 clupinacci@huntingtonny.gov

Hon. Joan Cergol, Councilwoman, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3173 JCergol@huntingtonny.gov Please thank Councilwoman Cergol for her continuing leadership on this initiative!

Hon. Mark Cuthbertson, Councilman, Town Hall,  100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3172 MCuthbertson@HuntingtonNY.gov

Hon. Edmund J.M. Smyth, Councilman, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3175 ESmyth@HuntingtonNY.gov

Hon. Eugene Cook, Councilman, Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY 11743 Phone: (631) 351-3174 ECook@HuntingtonNY.gov

Thank you for your help!

 

 


.03/19/2020 – Heckscher Park Pilot Program Up for Renewal

 

Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Up for Renewal March 31st

Please Support the Resolution to Renew the Pilot Program!

The pilot program allowing leashed dogs in Huntington’s Heckscher Park is up for renewal on March 31st! A resolution to extend the program from April 1st through June 30th will be introduced by Councilwoman Joan Cergol at the Huntington Town Board Meeting on Tues., March 31st. Please email or call the Huntington Town Board NOW and urge them to support the extension of the pilot program! Get contact information and details at Heckscher Park Leashed Dog Pilot Program Up for Renewal!