To the editor:

On Tuesday, April 26, I was walking my dog along  a trail at a creek on city property located adjacent to the Sandy Springs Tennis facility off Abernathy Road.  I have often walked my dog on this path.

Suddenly, my dog was “snared” by a metal trap placed along the trail edge.  The trap was a “pressure” trap often used for trapping beaver and other small animals.

I suspect with the recent increase in the coyote  population in the Sandy Springs area, the intended  “prey” in this case was  coyotes. The trap  caused  tremendous pain for my dog and while I attempted to free his leg, I was bitten several times before I could identify the release  procedure.

Needless to say, the entire experience was very traumatic for both pet and owner and the episode required visits to the veterinarian and family physician.

I am writing because of the inherent danger this “rogue” trapping represents  to both pets and people who frequently use this trail. The trail is often used by teenagers walking to the Publix supermarket located at Abernathy and Roswell  roads.

In addition, it is my opinion that even though well-intentioned, the placement of the trap was both thoughtless and inhumane in its  attempt at eradication  and that such an effort  is best handled by professionals.  I would think any attempt at trapping any animal species would be “posted”  as  such and [the location] proclaimed  as a dangerous  area.

I notified  the manager of the  tennis facility about  the danger for  people who frequent the area (i.e. joggers, walkers, workers, pets and teenagers). I also reported – in person – the incident to the Sandy Springs police department and was told to contact a “code enforcement” manager. I left a voice mail  commenting on the trapping and my incident  but have yet to hear from the manager.

I would hope a response addressing this incident would be forthcoming from someone in the city and that we as citizens can once again utilize tax supported facilities without fear of injury resulting from inhumane, archaic, malicious and most likely unlawful behavior on the part of one or a few individuals.

Robert C Mchugh