EAST PATCHOGUE, L.I. (CBSNewYork) — Many dog owners on Long Island are furious over the conditions of a Suffolk County dog park. They say it isn’t safe for their pets and are looking to the county for a fix.
“Obviously, this is not safe,” Ellen Bilello of Brookhaven Hamlet says as she holds a handful of broken glass.
It took her just two minutes to collect the garbage off the beach at the Mud Creek County Park.
“They need to clean it up,” she says. “It’s a dog park, so it’s for dogs. We wear shoes, dogs don’t, so they need to run and not get injured.”
Lately, Bilello and her husband have been thinking twice about taking their dog Clover to the East Patchogue waterfront park because of the hazardous conditions
“We police it when we are here as best as we can,” she says.
Park goers say on a regular basis, you will find trash all over the beach, including sharp objects, and a downed, rusty wire fence.
“It’s not only what it’s doing to our animals but what it’s doing to our environment,” Bilello said.
The park is one of the few in the area where dogs are allowed to be off the leash. But another dog owner says she doesn’t want to risk it. She says the closer her two dogs stay to her, the safer they are.
“I keep them on long leashes just in case they go too far, especially down on the other end where the wood is with the nails,” said Alicia Hadley Lake Ronkonkoma. “It’s really unfortunate because this is a beautiful place, it’s just not what it should be.”
Suffolk County runs the dog park. Garbage cans are installed right when you walk in. But these Long Islanders are demanding the county spend more time cleaning the beach and ensuring their pets and park goers are safe.
“I just worry about the glass with the dogs and stuff and their pads and stepping on it, is my biggest concern and people that come here barefoot,” said Jessica Macchio of Lake Ronkonkoma.
People and their pooches may not return unless something is done.
CBS2 reached out to the Suffolk County Parks Department. We have yet to hear back from them.