Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
(Scott Sommerdorf | The Salt Lake Tribune) A dog strains at his leash as it leans to pull the owner along on the east side of Salt Lake City's Downtown Farmers Market, Saturday, June 21, 2014.
Are dogs a blessing or a curse at Salt Lake’s Downtown Farmers Market?

They’re furry and fun but unpredictable near food, plants and people, so do they belong?

First Published Jun 23 2014 07:42 pm • Last Updated Jul 03 2014 12:56 pm

It could be called the Pooch Parade or even the Canine Carousel, but hopefully not Mutts in the Melons or Greyhounds in the Greens.

Yep, it’s summer and, among other Salt Lake City attractions, it’s time to make a Saturday sojourn to the Downtown Farmers Market at Pioneer Park. And what’s a family outing without your four-legged friends?

At a glance

Farmers Market’s rules on dogs

Be certain your dog can handle the market. It’s crowded.

Use a short leash. Long leashes can trip other patrons.

Keep your dog away from food and produce.

Always carry a bag for doggie messes. You can pick one up at information booths.

Visit the off-leash dog area on the park’s southeast corner.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

The market draws throngs seeking locally grown fruits and vegetables. It’s also known for its handcrafted breads, pastries, honey, jam and a host of other items — including ethnic food. It’s a festive place where shoppers also see dogs — lots of them, and all kinds.

Jeff and Jennifer Carleton own two beautiful, well-behaved Bernese Mountain dogs. Jameson is 3 years old and weighs 110 pounds. Brogan is 2½ and tips the scales at 105. These canines are crowd pleasers and grab admiration and friendly pats from passers-by .

The foursome hits the Farmers Market about twice a month. "It gives them exercise and it’s good for them socially," Jeff said of his pooches.

"And," Jennifer added, "it’s good to get them used to crowds."

But dogs can be a frustration, noted Tom Allen, who sells plants at his Days of Our Lilies booth. "I like them as long as they don’t lift their leg and pee on my plants."

Hans Millican, of New Horizons Nursery, offered the same critique. "It’s happened already today," he said.

Millican joked that he was considering putting up a sign: "If your dog pees here, you are buying a plant."

A dog’s behavior is a reflection of its owner, said Mark Vlasic, who, along with his daughter, Kajsa, brought their two Rhodesian ridgebacks, Akila, 6, and Fiesta, 4, to the market.


story continues below
story continues below

"You have to invest in training with your dogs," he said, "and spend time with them so they can respond to basic commands."

Of course, not all dogs do.

A quarrel of barking and snapping erupted on the market’s northeast corner near the Chef’s Secret Garden booth. (The park’s southeast corner does offer a fenced off-leash area for dogs.) The dust-up grabbed the attention of brothers Joe and Jeremiah Johnson.

"If your dog can’t play nice, you shouldn’t bring it [to the market]," Joe said. "That’s why I don’t bring my dog."

Jeremiah, who is an insurance agent, said when he looks at the dogs at the market, he sees liability.

"I understand why people bring their dogs, because they are part of the family," he said. "But I’m an insurance agent, and I had a [dog bite] claim just last week."

But, according to organizer Kim Angeli-Selin, there has not been a report of a dog bite at the Downtown Farmers Market in its 22 years. The most common complaint, she said, is people tripping over leashes. She reminds dog owners to keep their pets on short leashes to avoid mishaps — and to prevent their pooches from sniffing the food.

Nonetheless, many shoppers seem to like the added dimension the canines bring to the weekly affair — a down-hominess spiced with a certain air of unpredictability.

"I get to see so many dogs and so many are friendly," said shopper Terri Hale. "I always make sure I stop and pet the doggies."

Hale conceded, however, that dogs can frighten small children.

"You have to get your kids socialized," she said. "And you have to get your dogs socialized."

Next Page >


Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment


About Reader Comments


Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Videos
Jobs
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.