The Last Woof: Precita Bark Has Closed For Good

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Despite some initial excitement and a previous, temporary closure that was intended to revitalize the business, it looks like Precita Bark, the salon-style dog washery on the eastern end of Precita Park at Alabama, has closed for good, as the signage and interior fixtures have been removed.

Dog owners, please share your postmortems.

No word yet on what might come next to this historic corner store location. This is a sweet spot across from the playground and the Precita Park Cafe, however, so in the right hands it could be an innnnnteresting opportunity to further activate the joyfully reactivated Precita Park ecosystem.

PHOTO: Telstar Logistics

You’ll Be Shocked — Shocked! — by KRON4’s Investigation of Precita Park

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KRON-4 reporter Stanley Roberts investigated Precita Park in Bernal Heights recently. His reporting yielded conclusive proof that there are many off-leash dogs in Precita Park (despite what the sign says), and that visitors to Precita Park should watch out for poop. Journalism!

For more detail, lets go to KRON’s exclusive report. Over to you in Precita Park, Stanley:

PHOTO: Telstar Logistics

Good Samaritans Seek Owner of Doggie Found in Precita Park

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Neighbor Rebekah is searching for the owner of this wayward doggie:

On the full-moon evening of Friday the 13th, a dog was found roaming Precita Park. She looks like a Manchester Terrier or Min-Pin and appears to be about 9-18 months old, approx 25 lbs. Sweet and very scared with no microchip or collar. For now she is being fostered by Precita Park’s dogwalker-whisperer, Luke. If anyone recognizes this cutie, could they call Animal Care and Control or (415) 518-3984?

If the owner is not located, the dog will likely become available for adoption.

Reminder: Keep Your Dog Safe In Seasonal Tall Grasses

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Earlier this week, Miss Esther shared a photo of her dog Gertie whooping it up on the seasonally tall grass on Bernal Hill. “Gertie loves being in the tall grass!” she said.

At this, you Bernalwood editor experienced a sudden pang of anxiety, even though I don’t own a dog. Looking back through the archives, we recalled that this time last year Neighbor Nicolette had warned Bernal dog-owners about the danger of foxtail grasses:

Foxtails are small plant awns or seed-bearing structures, usually of the genus Hordeum. Starting in the Spring and continuing through the Summer, plants shed them indiscriminately. We started to see a steady flow of foxtail cases in our veterinary practice mid-April, right after several days of heavy winds which helped yank the awns from their plants and spread them far and wide.

Foxtails are shaped like a badminton birdie, but with a pointy instead of a round end. They also have tiny barbs along their shafts. All this adds up to a unidirectional migration pattern; they go in but they don’t come out. The most common problems we see with foxtails are wounds in the paws. Often the owner will just notice a swelling between the toes and think it is a growth or a tumor. After piercing the skin and entering the body, foxtails can actually migrate up the leg, if left untreated. We also see foxtails in noses, ears, and eyes very often.

The most dangerous exposure occurs when dogs inhale them. This typically happens if a dog is porpoising through a field of foxtail plants and inhales one, mouth wide open.

Read the whole thing for further guidance, and consider this a reminder that ’tis the season to be careful.

PHOTO: Gertie in the grass, by Esther

Dog Poop Along St. Anthony’s Sidewalks Creates Unholy Mess

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Our venerable neighbors at St. Anthony’s Immaculate Conceptions School near Precita Park have recently done a lot to beautify the sidewalk gardens along Precita and Folsom, with much of the work performed by students who attend the school. The gardens look great, but the St. Anthony’s community has a request for local dog owners: Please control your pets and pick up their poop!

Geno Lucero, St. Anthony’s Class of 1963, writes:

I volunteer at a school by Precita Park (St.Anthony – Immaculate Conception), where my family has attended over the past 100 years. I teach a drumline class there. I also help with other needs & concerns for the school’s staff, teachers, and families, who form a wonderful community.

The gentleman who takes care of the sidewalk gardens on Folsom St. & Precita Ave. has been frustrated that dog owners in the neighborhood are using these tended planted areas as toilets for their pets. I understand it’s human nature to allow this when walking a dog, but would like to reach out to area dog owners / walkers to address this issue.

The gardener installed “No Dog Pooping” signs (and replacements when the originals were stolen) and built individual fences around each garden to protect them. But the problem continues, and it’s become a public health concern for the children at the school and in the neighborhood. This is to say nothing of the damage done by pets when they scrape the plants with their paws after taking care of business. The dog urine alone is killing off plants.

There are numerous instances of dog owners / walkers just tossing their bags of dog poop on the sidewalks around the school & neighborhood, too. It’s not easy to monitor, but if our good neighbors can be proactive stewards, the entire neighborhood benefits.

This school just celebrated its 120th anniversary and as an alumnus of 50 years, I care deeply about not just the school, but this wonderful neighborhood which it has served. Precita Park is another dog owners’ “paradise”, and it, too, is used in a similar capacity. Families & children should be concerned when public health is at stake. I have been a dog owner and love them, but my priorities now are with the health and welfare of those affected by some of the area’s dog owners.

Message received? This admonition holds true over every square inch of Bernal Heights, and (unfortunately) it always bears repeating: Dog owners, it is your responsibility to manage your pets in a neighborly manner, and always always always clean up after your canines. No exceptions. No excuses. Just do it.

PHOTO: Top, Poop flags on Cortland, February 2013. Below, St. Anthony’s sidewalk gardens on Precita, via Geno Lucero. 

Lost Dog Makes Neighbor Julie Grateful to Be in Bernal

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Neighbor Julie had a tough day on Thursday, but her story has a sweet ending:

I was walking with my little dog, Sherman F. Peabody, around 5:30 yesterday afternoon on Bernal Hill. Sherman usually sticks right with me, but he was playing with another dog, and when I looked back to find him he was gone. It turned out, he ran all the way to Martha & Bros. Coffee Roasters on Cortland. I was beside myself looking for him, when the nice folks at Martha’s called to let me know he was there. When I got to the coffee shop, he was cozied up under a table with some lovely people – they had seen him wandering and brought him inside. I was pretty agitated by the thought of him crossing all of those streets unattended and what might have been, and I’m not sure I thanked everyone properly when I got him. I am so grateful, and so is Sherman. This is the kind of neighborhood where people not only rescue your dog but give him lots of love.

PHOTO: Sherman F. Peabody, by Neighbor Julie