A leash law in Floyd County? Ain’t gonna happen.

Floyd County does not have a law requiring owners of pets to be on a leash when out in public.  Dogs, in particular, are free to run where they want, bark whenever the mood strikes, and galavant throughout the county.

It’s been more than a decade since consideration of a proposed leash law in Floyd County brought an overflow crowd to a public hearing dominated by anger at putting a dog on a leash.

Seven years ago, the Board of Supervisors scrapped the county’s largely unenforceable noise ordinance.   Repeal came after some new residence complained about a neighbor’s barking dogs.

Floyd is largely a live and let live place.  We live without zoning, without leash laws and without many of the rules and regulations that dominate more urban areas.

Most Floyd Countians appear to want to keep things the way they are.

Yet some newcomers stir the pot when it comes with adding some rule or regulation.  On Facebook, complaints about barking dogs pop up from time to time.  So do leash laws.  And zoning.  And so on.

Over the weekend, Carroll County native Wayne Dixon started a discussion on keeping animals in check by noting “we lived on a dirt road with cows, pigs, horses and dogs all around us. Dogs bark and chase things, that is simply their nature.”

Dixon continued:

If you don’t like our laws , rules and regulations or a lack thereof. Move !! I urge you to move somewhere else that suits your needs. We have enjoyed our Appalachian American way of life for generations and we LOVE it. We will not change to suit your needs . You need to either join us in our love of life or get out of the way.

Administrators of The Floyd Group on Facebook shut down comments after numerous posts that turned into a debate.

Asked Deborah Carrino:

Do we really want to open up this one again?

It’s interesting that the people down here think freedom is only for them! their dogs should have the freedom to roam, but a woman doesn’t have the freedom to walk her dog down a road and not be attacked by that “free roaming dog”.

Some praised Dixon’s comments, calling his feelings “the truth.”

Others felt the county might need some laws keeping animals in check, curtail the noises of nature or limit what a landowner can or can not build on their property.

Wrote Bea D. Belcher:

I was born here and sometimes it makes me real sad that things has changed so much. Most of the stores aren’t owned by the old Floyd county people any more and have been remodeled​ so they look nothing like they used to. I get the Floyd Press and I don’t recognize any names of people I used to know and the paper is nothing like it used to be , so it takes me maybe 5 minutes to look at it. I am not throwing off on all you new people and you are welcome I just don’t do well with change. Lol.

In a thread started May 12 by Susanne Kauffman Cosgrove:

I am not able to walk a five mile loop where I live with my dog because so many dogs are loose and I am afraid that when there are a group of three they may attack my dog. I have spent years wanting to walk but……I am hoping to come to some solution so I can walk freely. It is almost ridiculous that I left Virginia Beach where you could walk trails with your dog and not worry, and now in the country I feel less freedom. I do not want to offend.  I just want to know if there is a solution?

Her post brought 61 replies, some agreeing with her but most saying a leash law is not needed or wanted in Floyd County.

The debate continues.