Will Dogs Be Welcome On Harrison County's Beach? - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Will Dogs Be Welcome On Harrison County's Beach?

Supervisors instructed beach director Bobby Weaver to draft a proposal that would open limited areas of the beach to dogs. The signs all along Harrison County's beach clearly say no dogs. But most of the people we talked to didn't see the signs.

Jennifer Leonard didn't know about the dog ban until we told her about it. She says she hopes the county supervisors will allow her dog Bijoux and other dogs to play in the sun and sand.

"I think at least one section would be nice to be able to go to, because I just got this puppy, and I plan on her being my buddy," Leonard said. "I want to take her everywhere I go, and we would like to come to the beach. I think it'd be fun to bring my dog."

Supervisors have debated the issue of dogs on the beach several times throughout the years. Some say if you allow dogs, what's to stop people from wanting to bring other animals. Texas visitors Diane and Stephanie Zavala take opposite sides too.

"I don't really approve of dogs on the beach. I think people should really have a clean beach to lay down and relax. You want to see the water and clean sand. You don't want to see any dog litter, broken glass things like that," Zavala said.

But her daughter, Stephanie, disagreed.

"People bring their dogs expecting to be able to walk on the beach with them," she said. "I think if you could bring dogs, a lot more people would come to the beach."

Vernon and Sheila Gaiser of Arkansas like to travel with their pooch Honey. They, too, didn't know about the no-dog ordinance.

"There should be enough beach here that they ought to be able to designate at least one area for pet owners to bring their pets to," Sheila Gaiser said.

"I think so too," Vernon Gaiser said. "Yes, there's plenty of beach, there's a lot of beach that they could let the dogs play on with the people, it's nice."

By Marcia Hill

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