Potential dog owners should do their homework before bringing home...

Potential dog owners should do their homework before bringing home a new pet. Credit: Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter and Adoption Center

Caring for dogs isn’t a walk in the park

As a dog groomer for nearly a year, I’ve seen people in their early 20s getting dogs. I’ve noticed that many new owners are lonely and need a companion. But they don’t seem to realize how much is involved in caring for these animals.

Training is especially time-consuming, requiring much research. An owner cannot leave certain dogs home alone for more than six hours because these pets can get separation anxiety and may have difficulty being housebroken. Most people just look for the closest adoption shelter, and many of those dogs have abandonment issues.

Many college students do not have the time, space and money available to care for a dog. A vast majority have studio apartments barely big enough for themselves. Most have full academic schedules and need to be out of the house as many as 12 hours on weekdays to attend classes and to study.

When left alone, a dog’s life is harder. Anxiety makes it difficult for veterinarians and groomers to do their jobs. High-anxiety dogs can put pressure on groomers to help make them comfortable.

I’ve had dogs who were brought in who had little social interaction, and the only extended form of exercise that week was walking around the groomer’s shop for five minutes.

Potential owners need to consider all of these factors before getting a dog.

Kimberly Groshans, Floral Park

Increase empty bottle deposits to 10 cents

Forty years ago, I walked with a group of concerned individuals from upper Manhattan to the Coca-Cola plant in Tarrytown to call attention to our state needing a bottle deposit bill. I was sore for three weeks, but we achieved victory, and New York State passed the Returnable Container Act, commonly known as the "Bottle Bill."

This landmark law has been a highly effective program to reduce litter and increase recycling rates in our beautiful state.

For many people, the five-cent deposit enacted four decades ago is no longer an incentive to bring their bottles back to supermarkets.

The state should increase the bottle deposit fromto 10 cents and use the additional revenue to boost enforcement and expand redemption centers.

It’s also time to expand the Bottle Bill to include wine, spirits, hard cider and most non-carbonated beverages.

— Joseph M. Varon, West Hempstead

The writer is a member of Beyond Plastics.

Repair the sidewalks along Route 107

Along Route 107 in North Massapequa, the sidewalks are in desperately need ofrepair. Northwell Health recently took over a huge shopping center and it did a beautiful job with thelandscapeing job. Unfortunately, employees have to use broken sidewalks on the other side of the street.

And why must Town of Oyster Bay residents who report a sidewalk that needs repair identify themselves? Why can’t a town employee who cuts the grass along Route 107report broken sidewalks?

The state finally repaved Route 107. It would be wonderful if we alsohad sidewalks that we could to use.

— Regina Kelly, Massapequa

Torn American flags should be replaced

The "patriots" of Bethpage who assemble on Broadway should replace their four or five torn flags flying on the poles across from John F. Kennedy Middle School. They are a disgrace.

The "patriots" of Bethpage who assemble on Broadway should replace their torn flags flying on the poles. They are a disgrace.

— Bob Horsham, Ridge


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