I am writing this letter to address what I see as a growing concern in Asheville. While I am an animal lover, there are some places that dogs simply should not be, in my opinion. Restaurants are my concern. I have numerous times encountered dogs tied up outside local restaurants in all sorts of weather. I have seen them tied up in rain, cold, 90-degree heat, and often with no water and no food. The poor pooches were obviously miserable. I have also seen wandering dogs attack a dog tied up outside a restaurant, and the poor thing couldn't get away.
The other thing I have most often encountered is a dog (or dogs) wandering around a patio dining area. I have seen them defecate next to diners, urinate and bark incessantly. I've even seen one dog jump up on a table at a local eatery outside, on Merrimon Avenue, and literally snatch someone's burger right off their plate when the person went inside for a minute.
Please, responsible dog owners. Keep your dog at home if you go out to eat or, at the very least, make sure it is safe and behaving well.
— W.A. Owlen