Archive for Friday, February 5, 2010

Lawrence Farmers’ Market seeking community input on whether to ban live animals

Topeka residents Stan and Carla Soper shop for fresh lettuce on the opening day of the Downtown Lawrence Farmers' Market in 2008. They brought along their two chihuahua dogs Millie, left, and Cassie.

Topeka residents Stan and Carla Soper shop for fresh lettuce on the opening day of the Downtown Lawrence Farmers' Market in 2008. They brought along their two chihuahua dogs Millie, left, and Cassie.

February 5, 2010


The Downtown Lawrence Farmers’ Market is considering banning all live animals for the 2010 season.

“We have had a large number of complaints about the behavior of some dogs at the market and we did have a few serious problems last year, so we are responding by having a conversation about the presence of animals at market.

— Tom Buller, market coordinator

The market is seeking input from the community before it makes a decision.

To submit comments:

• Call 331-4445

• E-mail

• Fill out a survey at

Market vendors will be discussing the issue at a meeting on Tuesday.

“We understand this is an important decision for many Lawrence residents and we would like community feedback.”

— Tom Buller

In an e-mail, Buller went over policies here and elsewhere:

“The presence of animals, especially dogs, are a large issue for farmers’ markets nationwide. In many markets people enjoy taking their pets but others have banned all live animals, except for service animals. The confluence of large numbers of people and pets in tight areas can certainly create problems.”

Reader poll
Should the Downtown Lawrence Farmers' Market ban live animals?

or See the results without voting


Dogs, in particular, cause problems, he said, ranging from mild incidents, such as blocking traffic, to extreme cases, such as biting.

In some places, like the City Market in Kansas City, Mo., the state or local health code prohibits animals.

In Kansas, the Department of Health and Environment does not prohibit animals. The animals must keep a distance from the areas for food preparation, but there is not a clear-cut ban.

Local dog policy

Several incidents last year led the Downtown Lawrence Farmers’ Market board of directors to pass a dog policy that let customers know what was expected in terms of dog behavior. The policy consists of six points:

  1. Dogs must be kept on a nonexpandable lead.
  2. Keep your dog under control and by your side at all times.
  3. Keep dogs away from produce, plants and other food products. This means head and tail ends.
  4. Your dog must be sociable to people and other dogs to be at the market.
  5. Not everyone is a dog lover. Be considerate.
  6. Come prepared to clean up after your dog.

Buller said some community members feel that this policy does not go far enough and have asked the market to consider a total ban on pets at market.


Liberty275 8 years, 1 month ago

Z's always gives our dogs treats. Just another reason to spend my money there and not the farmers market.

jumpin_catfish 8 years, 1 month ago

Ban 'em, just because you like dogs doesn't mean everyone does.

Sunny Parker 8 years, 1 month ago

I agree with Wilbur!

I hate dogs. What if one of those critters bite someone.....will the City be responsible?

Lawrence sucks. Stupid hipipies!

Uhjh 8 years, 1 month ago

Keep the dogs away from the market.

mrjcg2 8 years, 1 month ago

Long as they don't have K-2 they should be allowed.

William McCauley 8 years, 1 month ago

I agree with sunny ban the stupid hip-i-pies! They taste like crap.

Dan Edwards 8 years, 1 month ago

I'm a dog owner, and probably care more about my dog than I do most other things, but I can see why they might want to prohibit dogs at the farmers' market. Never mind the risk of fighting/biting, but a lot of male dogs I know (including mine) have a propensity to lift their leg on any somewhat vertical object--it's like a game for them. I just don't see that being appropriate at a place where food is being sold.

I love the idea of a combined walk the dog/tool around the farmers' market outing, but the reality of it dictates that they're probably best done separately. Granted, I'm sure there are some very well-behaved dogs that wouldn't pose a problem, but trying to enforce letting some dogs in and not others would be a nightmare.

Can't take a (non-service) dog into Checkers or Hy-Vee--why should the farmers' market be any different?

tnt1985 8 years, 1 month ago

UGH! Is anyone else tired of a new rule/restriction/law/fee/tax/etc... every time you turn around? We have become a society of whiners who are willing to give up our freedom and individuality one tiny piece at a time because "there might be a lawsuit" or "someone could get hurt". What terrible thing is really going to happen if we "let" people walk their dogs at the farmer's market? Geez!

Jon McCleary 8 years, 1 month ago

I have an idea, DONT GO. I have lived here and gone to the farmers market twice. The first time because the buzz was Farmers Market this and that. Everyone talking it up. I bought a miniature pie for $5. Thought it was crowded and could not figure out the dogs, women with armpit hair and the couple with the homemade milk crate baby stroller. Weird, to each his own, live and let live. I gave it a second chance and found more of the same. If the Farmers Market is in the top 10 things to do in Lawrence before you die, I am going to shorten the list. What an overpiced bunch of nothing. Take dogs and have a ball, I will be at home or Dillons.

platypus 8 years, 1 month ago

I agree with dano!

tnt - it's not about taking away rights to all of us. What about the people who want the right to stroll around, buy produce (or whatever) without dealing with animals? I feel like I am giving up a clean environment downtown when I have to look at and smell all the dog crap everywhere. Dogs don't belong everywhere!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

texburgh 8 years, 1 month ago

My dogs stay on short leashes, behave themselves, are friendly with other dogs, sit when I tell them to. I am diligent about cleaning up if they an "issue." They love to let children pet them but aren't pushy. Most of the dogs I see at the Farmer's market are the same way. I think it would be a shame to ban them. It gives thismarket a European feel. I remember sitting in pubs in England - indoor food serving places - where people had their dogs curled up at their feet. Well-behaved dogs are not a problem.

texburgh 8 years, 1 month ago

"mild incidents, such as blocking traffic"

And, by the way, if you want to ban stuff that "blocks traffic" how about strollers and those jogging strollers? Do that so I can't bring my grandson OR my dog!

tnt1985 8 years, 1 month ago

Really, Platypus? Your rights are "stepped on" by dog crap "everywhere" at farmer's market. Ridiculous! Damn animals are ruining the planet. Anyone who claims they are somehow being harmed by dogs on leashes at the farmer's market is either extremely unlucky or just likes to complain. Americans still have some freedom of choice. Some will choose to take their dog to the outdoor farmer's market on Saturday morning and others will choose to come and shop there. Let's keep rule-making for things that make a real difference.

Ann Hamil 8 years, 1 month ago

I don't have a dog, but I like seeing the dogs, babies, and interesting variety of people at the FM. I go on a semi-regular basis and I have never had a problem. I think the rules outlined in the story seem reasonable enough. If someone with a dog can't abide by them, they should be asked to leave. If you want to shop w/o the dogs, babies and hippies, if you want everything homogenized and BORING--go to Hy-Vee etc. Next they will ban the live music because it might hurt someone's ears or sensibilities---sheesh. Find something real to worry about--go volunteer at an inner city school or get yourself to Haiti and channel that energy into something positive.

postfactumproductions 8 years, 1 month ago

When I lived in Lawrence, one of my greatest delights was when I would walk my dog to the farmers market. She kept to my side on a short leash, never jumped on anyone, never barked, never pee'd or poop'd...just walked with me and stopped when I stopped. She didn't 'block traffic' and she was never in anyones way. I think in all the years I went...maybe two people ever pet her because they simply didn't notice her because she was so quiet.

Here in Chicago there are endless opportunities to hang with your dog in public. Bars, beaches, even restaurants that makes stuff for your dog that looks like the food you are eating! Now if we could just allow dogs on the trains....

I do not understand people that walk their mean dogs in super public places. Sasha(my dog) was attacked numerous times in lawrence and chicago by owners walking their bad ones. and no, they were never pit bulls.

If you have a 'mean' dog,or one that pee's on things a lot...leave it at home.

If you have a sweet dog with no hangups...then bring it everywhere that is allowed!

Boston_Corbett 8 years, 1 month ago

Wolfdogs can be very dangerous. Just ask around.

mom_of_three 8 years, 1 month ago

I have never brought my dog to the farmer's market, and I have seen very well behaved dogs there. HOwever, the farmer's market does get very crowded and it gets almost impossible to walk, when you have to avoid the strollers, the wagons and the dogs when people stop to chat with their friend. I don't want to ban any of those things, but maybe they need to expand the venue.

Michael Rowland 8 years, 1 month ago

A couple things:

-Isn't it usually the law that you have to clean up after your dog in public spaces? If it isn't here, then it should be, and should be enforced.

-If you think your dog gets too excited or mean, or if there are circumstances to bite or steal (I've heard stories of three year olds waving food in front of a dog's face, ends with an unhappy kid missing her snack), then there are wonderful devices meant to help. They're called muzzles. They're designed so the dog isn't in discomfort but can't bite at things.

My wife and I just adopted a dog a couple weeks ago, something we've wanted to do for the longest time, but never felt comfortable with the idea of a dog in an apartment. Our new dog is actually a greyhound, and we have been looking forward to taking her out places: dog park, pet store, farmer's market, random walks around town. And whenever there is going to be many other dogs, in order to protect her, we plan on muzzling her. Also, when we have brought her on a small trip, we've made sure she goes to the bathroom at home first. A dog with an empty bladder and has just done number 2 is less likely to make a mess in a public spot!

Aileen Dingus 8 years, 1 month ago

mom of three- I think you've hit on the crux of the problem.

Happily, the Farmer's Market is once again too big for the space it's in. It used to be over on Vt St, and got big, now it's on NH and the location is just too crowded for the market and the attendees.

Yes- if you get there at 7 you won't hit a crowd, but from 9 or so til close it's jam packed. We took one of our dogs one time this past year and what a disaster! Poor thing was nearly trompled by people and rolled over by strollers. She gets to stay home now. ;)

Perhaps a move to South Park for the whole market would be in order.

Sunny Parker 8 years, 1 month ago

Never been to the farmers market, and will never go. Do what you want with your dogs there! I could really care less.

JKBagby 8 years, 1 month ago

"The most recent official survey, conducted more than a decade ago, determined there were 4.7 million dog bite victims annually in the USA. A more recent study showed that 1,000 Americans per day are treated in emergency rooms as a result of dog bites. In 2007 there were 33 fatal dog attacks in the USA. Most of the victims who receive medical attention are children, half of whom are bitten in the face. Dog bite losses exceed $1 billion per year, with over $300 million paid by homeowners insurance."

LadyJ 8 years, 1 month ago

JKBagby's post ties in with my concern. You have no way of knowing which dogs have had their rabies shots. If someone's dog bites somebody and the owner and dog run off, the victim then has to undergo painful and expensive shots. When I was growing up in Lawrence I remember going down to buy my dog a dog license. I don't remember if I had to show proof of rabies vaccine. When did they do away with this and why? Many other towns require licenses. Maybe it is something we need to go back to in order to make more pet owners responsible.

infidel 8 years, 1 month ago

They should put it to a vote by the vendors. If you have ever been a vendor, you would most likely say they should not be allowed. I have been a vendor, when the dog fights happen, (many times a day), you can see a parting of potential sales as customers move quickly away from your tables. When you have witnessed fluffy and spots owners say time and time again, they are sorry about that and their dear little four legged friend never does that. Not to mention that you should never leave boxes or crates under your tables. I would never buy from a vendor that does, because too many spots have left spots on crates of produce

They should not allow anything other than service animals in the market. I don't dislike dogs, I just don't like yours

Water 8 years, 1 month ago

The Farmer's Market corridors are too narrow for the number of shoppers, baby strollers, dogs, little red wagons and groups who just stand and chit chat. And let's not forget the cyclists who push their bike around the Farmer's Market while shopping instead of leaving it outside the market. People treat the Farmer's Market as a gathering place, a relaxing weekend morning thing to do. Maybe it is experiencing successful growing pains and should be moved to a larger venue....again. It is tight quarters, dogs or no dogs. If we weren't all piled on top of each other, maybe the dogs...and people...wouldn't be so snippy. Could it be moved to the Tanger's Mall? The parking lot is huge and empty. It might even attract some businesses to move back into Tanger's Mall.

texburgh 8 years, 1 month ago

Wow. All these posts are making me rethink the whole FM event. And infidel, wow.

Here's my list of banned things for the Farmer's Market: All animals (including the vendor I saw with an iguana), Jugglers (what if they drop a ball and it hits me?), Dreadlocks (that CAN'T be sanitary!), Strollers and jogging strollers (they block the path), Children in diapers (they sometimes smell and it makes me not want to buy food), Children who touch stuff with dirty hands (I guess we could ask parents to handcuff them), Vendors who don't wear those latex free gloves when handling foods, Wooden food crates (splinters!) Cooked food that doesn't clearly have a HOT! warning label, All cooking (those appliances could fall over and burn me), Pies (have you NEVER watched a 3 Stooges film?), Live music (some of it is too loud and hurts my ears; some is too soft and I grow disturbed trying to hear it), Cyclists in spandex (Should my grandchild really be exposed to that!), Meat (offensive to vegetarians), Eggs and cheese (offensive to vegans), What about the Elk vendor with the antlers? A child could poke his/her eye out on those things!

This list is probably not exhaustive. Please feel free to add something that will alleviate your fears.

vermont 8 years, 1 month ago've changed. I like it here because it's casual. I like it here because everyone loves my Golden Retriever. I have attended the farmers' market with him and it is a real treat, a natural experience in a natural town -- or so I thought. Every time I turn around somebody's complaining about something(homeless, K-2, SLT, potholes). We need to look for new leadership. I think these problems begin with David Corliss. He has worn out his welcome. Time to move on Dave and give Lawrence a chance to thrive like it once did. Fresh blood with vision and understanding about what Lawrence does well and what it doesn't. When I'm walking my very well-behaved dog at the market I often find myself thinking, or even saying out loud, I can't believe what an awesome town this is, but I've been saying that less and less and less. That is a problem on many levels even your economic development platform...which by the way has no retail emphasis!!! Why in a town that strives to good food on good neighbors tables and not send it back to Arkansas is their no emphasis on retail at the Chamber of Commerce/city level?? B.S. A major problem. Dave, leave!

JustNoticed 8 years, 1 month ago

Oh Texburgh, you have stolen my heart with this, "I am diligent about cleaning up if they an 'issue.'”

"Issue". The poor word's neutrality is being lost as it is being turned into a synonym for "problem". You, however, have employed another of the word's legitimate meanings in some clever word play. Thanks.

50YearResident 8 years, 1 month ago

I went to the Art in the Park several years ago. This hippy looking guy was walking his Golden through the displays when the dog had to unload 2 days worth of dog crap. Then this guy walks away with his dog. It only tok 3 minutes for 3 people to step in it and cover their shoe. I should have called the police or sugested he clean up his dogs mess, bud got distracted by yet another dog in the park.

Dateable_Shelter_Dude 8 years, 1 month ago

I don't want someone who has just cleaned up their dog's feces no matter what method they used to be handling the produce that I'm going to handle. Those fingernails hold things then scratch the surface injecting things we never notice and scrubbing the outside isn't going to help much if it happens. Same with the held smaller dogs. They hold the dog and juggle fruit they've deciding on, the dogs squirms and a nail that has just walked in the grass or on warm tar goes in and no one notices. The fruit goes back on the table as the owner quickly tries to regain control of juggling all they are trying to carry. And what about little mr dog's privates oozing (sorry, someone has to say it thats what mr dogs do) on the owner's arm since they can't lick as they're being carried for all that time? They shift mr dog from arm to arm and hold a melon or two on that same arm to decide which is best then lay one back down. Hand one to the vendor passing mess to their hands.Then you come along and hold one up to your face to smell it or your kid presses it to their nose.

50YearResident 8 years, 1 month ago

The picture perty much verifies what the last poster said.

lindseydoyle 8 years, 1 month ago

Just make sure Farmer's Market has enough insurance because if I get bit I'll sue them for $millions. Keep your dogs in your car!

lindseydoyle 8 years, 1 month ago

What is it with people and their dogs? Just yesterday an article about some guy who threatened animal control over his dog. It is all about vanity.

Angela Heili 8 years, 1 month ago

Not only should they ban the dogs because of misbehavior but also the people who bring the misbehaving dog. If they don't have enough common sense to figure out that they shouldn't have a dog there with the propensity to bite, they don't need to be there either.

Seriously, why is it so hard for people to understand that if there dog displays aggressive behavior that they shouldn't bring the dog!?!?

Also, why is it so hard for people to be considerate of others. Dog's blocking traffic.... People, do you not realize that you are NOT the only people on the planet? Why is it so hard to engage the brain and think about someone other than yourself for the short time that you are at the market or anywhere else for that matter?

It blows my mind how many people out there display not a single bit of common sense, hence the reason there are laws, rules, bans etc. Those laws, rules, bans etc are there because there are so many inconsiderate people out there in society who desperately lack common sense.

As Dateable_Shelter_Dude and 50YearResident stated, not everyone wants to eat dog excrement, hair and whatever else a dog harbors. I am a dog owner and dog trainer/behaviorist and let me tell you, i have seen dogs roll in the most disgusting things around. Things that will make we humans very ill.

As another poster stated, her dog lifts his leg (by the way, it's not a game, it's them marking their territory and displaying dominance by marking on top of another dogs markers :-) ). I absolutely applaud him/her because he/she has the common sense enough to know that the dog will do that at the market and the solution is to not bring the dog!

I would love to bring my dog to the Farmer's Market for socialization, however, there is food there and other dogs, and quite frankly, I am there to purchase goods and won't be paying attention to the dog or others' dog(s) at all times to thwart any attempts at unacceptable behavior by my or others' dog.

For me, it is absolutely wonderful to see a very well behaved dog and his/her person out enjoying the day. Unfortunately, there are far more people out there with dogs they really don't know what to do with or handle. And that is when the authorities that be must step in and make yet another darn rule to protect the rest of us from those dog owners and their dogs.

In this day and age there is no excuse for ignorance. There is a plethora of information out there on anything you want to know. Books, the internet, groups, professionals, etc. One of the movies my children love to watch is Lilo and Stitch. One of my favorite lines is Plinkly (the little alien) handing a document to another alien and saying, "Here. Educate yourself."

(Stepping down of the soap box and putting it away)

Danielle Brunin 8 years, 1 month ago

I hope people at the Farmer's Market clean up after their dogs better than they do on Mass. or New Hampshire street.

Dateable_Shelter_Dude 8 years, 1 month ago

Parrysmom did a good job. I want to say I'm not a dog hater, I have two. But I'm not asking you to accept everything my dogs does into or onto your body unawares. The more dogs you have together the more likely are are to pass dog problems around. Fleas, viruses, bacteria, worms. Sure you take your dog to the vet once a year to get him checked. Then you take him around where another dog has left eggs in it's stool the next week and then you can have hookworms all year depositing them in your own yard just because you took him out into the crowded area with other dogs. Or coccidia, etc.You know how they just love to smell another dogs ickiest poo then lick their noses? That's what does it that lick. They swallow the eggs or bugs right then. Maybe they lick their feet later.

Some enterprising person should sit outside the market and charge to dog watch. $2.00 per dog per hour or something. Bring a lawn chair and sit with 5 dogs on leashes. Or a pick up with some crates in the back, stack them when they arrive for easy access from the back.

tnt1985 8 years, 1 month ago

CHEESEburger: "The consideration of new rules regarding dogs is likely because of people like people like tnt1985, who believes everyone should love dogs, relish stepping in dog crap, and risk being bitten by dogs not kept under control by their owners."

Did I say ANY of that? Did you have a dream about what I "believe" and then decide to write about it? My issue is that America increasingly accepts the out of control replacing of liberties with whining, complaining, rules, regs, fees, and taxes. It's absurd - and much of it justified by the misrepresentation facts by people like you (and lindseydoyle who thinks a potential dog bite is worth "millions"). Sadly, the few people who genuinely have an issue with this (and not just those who love to complain) should just stay home where they are "safe". Maybe we can get another 1/2 cent or so in sales tax to buy dog proof protective bubbles for people to venture out in. If it's not too late, we can add that to the health care bill - page 3001!

flux 8 years, 1 month ago

Ban the people that are weird about there pets not just the pets. I'm going to assume that the couple in this pic are probably a good example of this. What they need to do is ban that guy that dresses like a biker and plays acoustic guitar just out front of the market.

Richard Heckler 8 years, 1 month ago

I say move the Farmers Market to Mass Street. 6AM - 11AM

Most stores do not open before 10 AM. Shoppers are not in abundance before noon. Block off two blocks. 7th street to ninth street.

Farmers market patrons can then go out to breakfast after shopping or convenient.

Dogs can be unpredictable in crowded situations. Even the most friendliest of dogs can find themselves in a compromising situation. It is not worth the risk.

dontcallmedan 8 years, 1 month ago

oneeye-those people were out in a public place and no permission was needed. Journalism 101.

lindseydoyle 8 years, 1 month ago

If people who "love" their dogs so much as to take them to a Farmer's Market could see themselves for what they really are, passive-aggressive and/or vain, I think they would be pretty embarrassed.

Robert Rauktis 8 years, 1 month ago

Those chihuahuas in the pic are eating as well as their owners. Funny how people's self-conceptions spill over into their pets and children. But...they're eating well.

Bet they wouldn't survive a day in Haiti.

countrygirl 8 years, 1 month ago

Topeka's farmer's market hasn't allowed dogs except for service animals for quite a while now. It would be interesting to hear the reasons why they were banned. It sure hasn't hurt their attendance though. They have a big parking lot by the justice building down town and lots of vendors and shoppers.

elle 8 years, 1 month ago

I have three dogs, all small breed and well behaved. If the Farmer's Market loves my money, they need to love my dogs. I have seen people with children who are less sanitary than 9 lb. dogs walking around on a leash and taking a wee in the grass occasionally. Seriously, dirty fingers and grabby hands that have been up the nose, in the mouth or playing in the dirt pose more a health risk than any dog that isn't anywhere near a table. Don't even get me started with the people who change diapers on the grass, then handle the food. On behalf of all dog owners, I judge and support community activities the "whole" family can enjoy. That includes the family dog. If my well behaved dogs aren't welcome, than young children with no impulse control or those who aren't potty trained should be banned too.

Kelly Cline 8 years, 1 month ago

We were in Bellngham, WA, last summer and visited their farmers market. Large signs all around said NO STROLLERS and NO DOGS. I am a dog and stroller lover, but I have to admit that it made the market a real pleasure to have neither. I suppose something to think about!

Alexander Neighbors 8 years, 1 month ago

NO restrictions on animals, No more bans, this is an out door Event . Dont take that away if peoples dog can not be out in public they should be aware of that

GardenMomma 8 years, 1 month ago

You know, this would not be an issue if EVERY dog owner used their common sense and kept it pleasurable for ALL involved.

Not everyone who attends the Farmer's Market loves dogs or loves YOUR dog.

Use a leash and keep your dog close. Don't let them sniff people or produce. Clean up after them.

Most dog owners are responsible, but there are some who aren't. Those are the ones who spoil it all for the others.

Kind of like The Toy Store or Muncher's Bakery restricting the number of students who can enter their establishment at a given time. Not all students are disruptive, but those that are, spoil it for all students.

suzy 8 years, 1 month ago

First of all, Texburgh, I love you and I thank you for your post. So true.

Second of all, my husband and I own a beautiful Golden Retriever who is quite popular at the Lawrence FM, especially with some of the vendors. We have received wonderful advice from them, not to mention we have spent lots of money purchasing emu and buffalo bones for our dog (you guys are awesome!).

I understand that some people might not have control of their dogs, and that can ruin it for everyone. But I have also seen many adults and children downright rude to the vendors and customers, out of control, and an embarassment as well. My dog has more manners than some of the lamos that are posting on this site. Dogs that are on LEASHES and OUTDOORS is not a violation of city code. Go to your local grocery store if you have a problem with this.

Michael Rowland 8 years, 1 month ago

Just reading over some of the posts, seriously people you are afraid of a dog doing a 2, someone picking it up using either one of those contraptions with a bin on the end of a stick or just using a plastic bag, then touching the produce?

1: You do realize that a layer of plastic, usually vinyl or latex, is all that helps prevent pregnancy, STDs, transmitting diseases during surgery, preventing people working in labs from coming in contact with toxins, stores those toxins, and many various other medical/biological uses.

2: All this produce is grown out on fields in farms. Fields in which wild animals can run around. Wild animals could have done their business in those fields. Not to say that this produce is unsafe to eat, except for hydroponically grown produce, the stuff at the grocery store went through the same thing. How do you protect yourself from such things? You wash the produce.

There the concern over the poo getting on the food is done.

About the problems of stressed or aggressive dogs, well, that falls on the shoulders of the owners. Dogs that are agoraphobic or are just aggressive should just be left at home. I know, they're like children to you, but you don't want to risk your dog biting someone's kid.

Lastly, the crowding. It's the farmer's market, it'll be crowded. It's crowded at the Hy-Vee at times. Every try to go down an aisle with a few boisterous kids who aren't paying attention, several elderly people, and frazzled moms who can't decide what sugary cereal they want to feed their kids and just can't get to ones side of the aisle to make room for others to pass? Maybe we should just have a rule saying "If you can't keep the aisle clear, you can't shop at a grocery store," because I just don't want my lettuce and cheese to be at room temperature. Now, I do agree that the peak time at the market is not going to be the best time for dogs to accompany their owners, at least until the area can expand. Perhaps dog owners can come earlier, before large crowds start coming in?

Instead of coming up with new rules, perhaps a new site should be chosen. Back in Carrboro and Durham, NC there were permanent sites with roofing put up over concrete and a large grassy area. Maybe the town can find a spot and build something like that? More space for vendors and customers of all species!

momof2ku 8 years, 1 month ago

I think this is an on going problem but not just at the Farmers Market. It's at Art in the Park and every Parade. You have someone who has put an effort into creating something or growing something just to have a dog come up and pee on your stand. I've seen dogs nip at people because these events can be crowded. I love dogs but give them at break and let them stay home!

Matt Schwartz 8 years, 1 month ago

one-eye wilbur is a HUGE one-eyed monster....and bitter...about what? we don't know...were you not held enough as a kid?

gatekeeper 8 years, 1 month ago

Then it's the last time I attend the market. My dog goes (he's small and better behaved than every darned kid you see running around there) and he always gets to pick out something from one of the vendors selling items for dogs. That's the Saturday routine for many people in town - walk the dog to the market, do some shopping and get a good workout walking home with all the stuff we bought. Hmmm, vendors selling items for dogs. Why would that be? Because there are a lot of very well behaved dogs that go with their owners that made sure they behave. I wish that could be said for the parents who block the walkways, yapping with other parents and letting their kids run all over the place. Oh no, a dog. Guess what? Leave your kids at home and the market would be much better off. I spend a lot of money at the market, but I'll expand my garden instead and will grow more of my own instead of supporting the local farmers. There's also the market in KC that makes ours look like a garage sale. I don't think they realize how many people won't come because of this.

Those that don't like dogs, request they move the market somewhere indoors. It's in a frickin parking lot outside for Christ's sake.

A parking lot that the night before has drunks taking a leak in it. I've seen them have to clean up the parking lot before they can set up on Saturday mornings. And you're concerned about dogs.

Lawrence is becoming JoCo. Those that want JoCo, MOVE THERE! I want my Lawrence back that I moved to 20 years ago. Sadly, it's become frickin suburbia instead of being the cool town is used to be.

Eric Neuteboom 8 years, 1 month ago

I really could go either way, but as a new parent, I'd much rather see no dogs there. It may very well be that your dog is very well behaved, etc., but I don't know that and when it comes to my family's safety, I can't assume that. Too many people get distracted while shopping and let their dog wander (even while leashed) or worse, get right in our stroller near my baby girl. It's just easier and safer with no dogs there.

Just my thoughts...

Smarmy_Schoolmarm 8 years, 1 month ago

Gatekeeper, the KC City Market doesn't allow dogs.

Warning, copy and paste coming….

Dogs are not permitted within the City Market square, pavilions, building walkways or retail locations unless serving in an official ADA capacity. Due to health and safety of food products and Market patrons, your cooperation is appreciated. KCMO Food Code 6-501.115 KCMO Ordinance 060833; Chapter 14, Sections 14-1 and 14-29

momof2ku 8 years, 1 month ago

Maybe they should have a separate dog market?

Mamie 8 years, 1 month ago

I agree with dano. I'm also a dog owner and I'd like to take my dog everywhere, but I know there are limits. Like parents who think their hellions are perfect angels, the same can be said of dog owners. I've seen many animal owners that think their dog is the most wonderful thing in the world, but they also don't realize that not everybody loves their dog. If everyone was the perfect pet owner, that would be great, but just a few people that aren't considerate of others and let their dogs cause problems can ruin things for everybody, including other dog owners.

gatekeeper 8 years, 1 month ago

Smarmy_Schoolmarm (Anonymous) says…

Gatekeeper, the KC City Market doesn't allow dogs. /////

I never said they did. YOu fail. You have poor reading comprehension. I said "There's also the market in KC that makes ours look like a garage sale." Please explain where I said it allows dogs? It doesn't because of all the indoor shops. I will go there instead of Lawrence if they ban dogs, since it's a better market and Lawrence wants to start stupid rules.

d_prowess 8 years, 1 month ago

I love this hot button issue! Everyone knows that most pet owners (especially dog-owners) feel that their pets are no different than their kids. And so to them, the idea of banning dogs is equal to saying no kids at the farmers market (and from previous comments, many pet owners would like this!). Also, I would be more interested in knowing how the vendors feel about this. If the majority of them welcome dogs, I think they should be allowed. if not, ban them and let them deal with any loss of sales from angry pet owners. They are the ones that make income from the event so they should have the say.
(my only exception to this would be if the driving force was a liability issue that the city is not comfortable with. However, there is nothing in the article to suggest that is the case)

ph007 8 years, 1 month ago

It is about safety, Would you like your child bit in the face, or your dog to bite a child, or fight with another dog?? It only takes seconds for that to happen, no matter how short the leash. dogs are unpridictable

d_prowess 8 years, 1 month ago

ph007, I think that is part of my point in saying that they should have the vendors decide. If they want dogs there and that causes some parents to stop coming cause they don't feel their kids are safe, it is the vendors decision. Just like how they can decide to not let dogs participate and lose those folks.
You are never going to make everyone happy, but shouldn't the people providing the service in this case be the ones to decide this instead of letting the patrons fight between themselves?

skinny 8 years, 1 month ago

Dogs should be banned from all of the downtown area period, end of story!!

Dogs belong out in the country where they can run freely without being fenced, caged, or tied up.

planetwax 8 years, 1 month ago

If I can't take my dog with me, then I am less likely to go. It's an outdoor event, and my dogs are like my family. I take them out when it's sunny and nice. I'm tired of all the rules in this town. Have some tolerance, people!!! And, watch the Dog Whisperer if you're a dog owner. You'll be amazed by what you can learn to train yourself. :)

Jen McReynolds Sherwood 8 years, 1 month ago

For all of the trouble these dogs cause, it's odd I've never seen it myself.

My husband and I will sometimes take one of our dogs to the FM, but only if one of us is willing to keep an eye on her (both ends - gotta watch the retriever tails). They've never gone 1 or 2 while we've been there or downtown. They are kept on a short leash and are by our sides (thank you, dog training classes). We've only been met by other friendly dogs. I'm always impressed by the children who ask before they pet her and are gentle.

If they ban dogs, it will be another unfortunate example of the bad behavior of owners ruining it for everyone else. If that happens, I will be one of those supporting a ban of the SUV-like strollers that take up more space than my 70-lb dog.

KansasPerson 8 years, 1 month ago

Boy, I'm with you on the strollers, Sunflower_Jen. I know this is tangential to the subject at hand, but you touched a nerve. I've seen people bring these humongous strollers into small stores (not grocery stores, I'm talking little places like downtown) and in restaurants (again, small and not much space to maneuver in) and then look aggrieved when the staff politely asks them to move the stroller so they are not blocking the aisle.

I know it's not a perfect world where you can leave your stroller parked outside and trust that it'll be there when you come back. I just wish everything weren't so dang huge these days.

I have no opinion either way on dogs at the Farmers' Market. I've seen well-behaved dogs there, and no problematic ones, but I probably don't attend enough to have much data. I tend to agree with the poster who said we should let the vendors decide. My only concern is that some dogs are tiny, and some days the market is very crowded, and someone might accidentally injure a little animal when they didn't see it.

Jeremy DeBoard 8 years, 1 month ago

So, dogs have joined the wagon with cigarettes in regards to public health hazards. How interesting. I wonder what will be next on the chopping block.

Aside from dogs and what they could possibly do to produce, what about people in general. Lots of talk of dogs spreading contagion, but nothing about finger-licking, nose-picking folk handling the food before you get to it.

d_prowess 8 years, 1 month ago

Again, I think it is a nice idea to ask the public to comment on this issue, but really the decision has to be given to the vendors! They are the ones that talk to the actual patrons of the Farmers Market and not the people that just read this story and decide to put in their two cents.
And any decision on this actually impacts the vendor's livelihood due to possible loss of patrons, so they should decide; not the people that will just be mad they don't have their normal Saturday morning place to visit (this could be both dog owners or dog dislikers!)

Loretta Ybarra 8 years, 1 month ago

How sad is it a community has to legislate to the lowest common denominator? It's never "my" dog that is the problem.. It's not "my" child running up pulling on the dog that could cause a bite due to lack of supervision. What's next? Dress codes so I don't see people in their pj's at the grocery store? So sad to see so many don't understand.

Kyle Chandler 8 years, 1 month ago

maybe all the gross cat people on this thread can bring fluffy to the FM in support of dog hate.

how bout a community litterbox

kernal 8 years, 1 month ago

It's interesting that most of the posts on this subject refer to a person's right to take a dog to the farmers market. Granted, some of the dogs are adorable and friendly,but some of them get nervous as they are not used to crowds and small children; they feel threatened. We should look at it as doing our dogs a favor and not take them to the farmers market, as it's not a venue that caters to dogs anyway. Save their outings for something THEY will enjoy.

Michael Rowland 8 years, 1 month ago

Once again it comes back to the obedience and attitude of the dog. It really comes down to the owners being smart about it. If your dog is uncontrollable and gets nervous in crowds, or is aggressive, then it would just be best to keep it at home.

My dog's not fully trained yet, we're working on her, but I struggle with her on walks sometimes because she wants to be the leader and pulls on her leash to get her way. I'm working on it, but if I don't think she will be perfectly behaved and cause trouble at the market, I won't bring her. I do think she's a very good girl, but she's just not ready for it and I won't expose her to it.

But that's not to say that there aren't dogs out there that are very obedient and wouldn't cause trouble.

Those of you without pets: these animals are like children to their owners. Think of it this way, if you had a quiet, well behaved, straight A child and were told you can't bring your kid to a restaurant because a bunch of people complained about a bunch of unruly kids, how would you feel?

Reuben Turner 8 years, 1 month ago

just ban the dogs-cats-mice-hamsters-fish-snakes-flies-fleas- put a ban on them all.

Michael Rowland 8 years, 1 month ago

Moocher, seeing how often we get stopped during our walks by people saying how cute my dog is and wanting to pet her, I would say you're just wrong.

And how is having a dog with you in an open air market third world? If it were third world it wouldn't be a market full of local produce but a UN food distribution center.

And to everyone for these new rules, if you really feel so disgusted by people who consider animals as family (or uncomfortable being around hippies), then perhaps Lawrence in general isn't a good match for you. I believe there are a couple cities nearby that are far more urban and a better fit.

Ban dogs from downtown all together? Why? Because they may need to relieve themselves? Then why not ban them from all sidewalks altogether? Then you and your comfort would be responsible for dogs becoming overweight and unhealthy due to lack of exercise. I just don't get it, people complain about dogs in downtown, but not about the park or on campus. Ooooooo, my dog poops just feet from where children play! True I clean it up, but there's that slight chance that if the children don't wash their hands before they eat, that one time they fell down and caught themselves with their hands and got the smallest dap of poop particles on them, those poop particles might wind up being eaten! Say it ain't so!

If these rules come through, then I think we should start considering banning children from downtown all together. I love children, can't wait to be a father myself, but it's the ones that don't have good manners, can't pay attention to their surroundings, and aren't disciplined by mom and dad that are annoying. I just don't want to have my downtown experience tarnished by kids screaming at the top of their lungs because they can't have ice cream or kids running everywhere without a care about other people. But I just don't trust parents to realize whether their kids are the well disciplined sort or hellions. Just have to ban them all!

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