Dogs on Golf Paths Etiquette

Andrea Molberg

Eager to walk on SaddleBrooke TWO golf course paths with your pet now that the rule has changed?

In response to the thousands who requested, commented, and voted about allowing dogs on SaddleBrooke TWO golf paths, the Rules and Regulations Committee (RRC) recommended a change that the SaddleBrooke TWO board approved.

The new dog policy is first being implemented at The Preserve while work is completed on the MountainView course. Maintaining the beauty and safety of our courses is a high priority. Wait for it. To reduce mistakes, signage is being updated.

SaddleBrooke TWO residents voted about two to one (755 to 348) in favor of the rule change, which is similar to SaddleBrooke One’s popular, successful policy. SaddleBrooke TWO’s policy matches SaddleBrooke One’s with two exceptions for protecting residents and courses: (1) leash length is six feet and (2) access is suspended during course closures. RRC responded to residents’ concerns that controlling dogs at the end of 16-foot retractable leashes can be difficult.

Please follow the rules so we keep the privilege of having canine residents on SaddleBrooke TWO golf paths.

Here are some guidelines:

• First, check the posted signs indicating whether non-golfers are allowed.

• Walk only during posted times—before golf play has started in the morning and after most has stopped late afternoon.

• Give way to active golfers at all times.

• Be sensitive to neighbors who want peace and quiet.

• Stay on paved golf paths except to collect poop.

• Always have your pet on a leash that is no longer than six feet.

• Shorten your dog’s leash when approaching others.

• Always have your dog under control.

• Clean up after your pet and take dog waste with you off the course.

• Enjoy the beauty of our golf courses and respect the rules!

Many thanks to the Rules Committee, led by Ray Adams, who considered and answered every resident comment, and to the Golf Committee, Golf Operations, and Patrol who weighed in. Some people fear dogs. Some dogs and their owners frankly need more training to be good citizens. Golfers and residents, especially those living on the courses, appropriately want dogs on leashes, off tees and greens, under control, and not disturbing the peace. The biggest concern was rulebreakers.

Rules are made with worse-case scenarios in mind, and the deal is that dog waste will not only be picked up, but transported off the course. Nobody wants to encounter dog waste while golfing or walking. Please, no bag dumping in course receptacles, bathrooms, or over walls. Encourage your dog to habitually find a spot away from populated areas. To keep from burdening Patrol and golf staff, volunteers will be out on the paths observing and with extra bags if you need one.

Agreements and rules let us know what’s expected, so they’re necessary evils for sports, marriages, and communities. No longer kids playing Monopoly, we still want to yell, “Hey, play by the rules!” Fairness matters.

Rules are far easier to swallow when we recognize policies about dogs, speeding, and landscape maintenance are community agreements. Thanks, SaddleBrooke TWO board, for wrestling with them. We have the opportunity to offer input and vote. Then the deal is to live honorably with the result—whether somebody is watching or not.