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15/04/2013 / Julie

Leash law’s in session!

The last hurrah on March 31st!

With spring comes the leash law up here. It started on April 1st and ends on September 1st.

The leash law is there to protect the animals that are producing little animals this time of year, and of course live stock let out to grace in the mountains and some woods. Most people respect it, and leash up their dogs. Some places are less restrictive than others, the places where you are more likely to meet off leash dogs. If you meet the police with an off lead dog you’ll get a pretty hefty fine.

Biking’s a good way to build stamina.

The mountains are a pretty safe bet as to where you can go and never meet an off lead dog. Especially if you keep to the tourist tracks. There may be sheep or musk ox, or maybe reindeer, and people keep their dogs leashed on these trails. If you’re off the beaten track you’re most likely so alone that meeting other people is unlikely up there. On the other hand, if you do meet other people, chances are the dogs will either be leashed, ignore you or well behaved. People don’t hike without being experienced and trained. This goes for their dogs as well.

It is a good idea to leash up your dog if you’re walking a place you’ve never been before in Norway. You never know when you may bump into cattle. If there’s no cattle grid anywhere, there probably aren’t any cattle, though there may be roe deer, moose and other wildlife everywhere.  Derria is rarely let off lead these days. She’s got too much of a hunting instict. Romeo and Bajnok on the other hand I let off lead when it’s ok. Romeo can run off lead almost everywhere. He doesn’t chase, he doesn’t bother people, and he comes when called. Bajnok is let off lead if I can control the surroundings, and I know there aren’t any people close by.

I can’t trust Derria, that’s the problem. We’re working on it. But you don’t need to let the dog run off lead for them to get their ya-ya’s off. Ask any hunting dog owner around here. I bet you they rarely let their dogs off lead this time of year. There are of course well trained exceptions. They find other ways of tiring their dogs. Not like we have plenty of fenced in dog parks around (there’s one, but not in walking distance, and it’s not well known). They train. Bike, jog, obedience, hike. They train hunting. Some diversify and try agility and other stuff. There’s no need to get your knicker’s in twist over having to put your dog on lead, just be responsible. Some years we even have an “extra ordinary leash law” implemented in witner if the snow is extra deep. Again to protect wildlife. Then we have to figure something else in winter as well.

On the more positive side we have what is known as “the every man’s right” in this country. This means that by law you can walk where ever you want as long as you aren’t in somebody’s back yard (or sown fields). You never have to worry about walking on private property in Norway. It’s our right to use nature for ourself, as long as we tidy after ourselves. You should leave nature as you found it.

All dogs love to run!

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One Comment

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  1. Bren / Apr 15 2013 21:45

    Nice post! I so wish people would heed leash laws. It protects everyone and the animals around period. Big issue in my area.

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