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RE: [ft-l] FT Hikes & Dogs

 > What do other chapters do?  Is there an FT state policy about dogs on hikes?

 > I welcome all opinions, facts, and random thoughts.

My thoughts (and I always have them)--
First, you need to know the rules for where you're going.  For instance, in Bull
Creek there are written regulations about dogs, and at certain times of the year
they are strictly prohibited on the property.  This is true of many wildlife
management areas.  (Even though you won't be using your dog for hunting, "no
dogs" means no dogs.)

Second, as an Activity Leader (and I preach this often) you have every right to
turn away anyone who could potentially pose a hardship on the group.  If you've
organized a wildlife watching hike and a dog shows up, the objective of the hike
is ruined for the rest of the group (hardship).  And sometimes the best-behaved
dog can be irritated by the unwanted attentions of others (hardship).  As an
Activity Leader, you are responsible for the comfort and safety of your group
(remember the "L" word) as well as the quality of their experience; if dogs are
not something you want to be responsible for, turn the owner away .   
 (A good thing to do when advertising your activity is to put in writing that
reservations are required-- call ahead.  That way the obliging ones can be
screened and prepped, and the ones who just show up can be easily and tactfully
turned away.)

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