Central Oregon’s Pet Evacuation Team is putting up more signs at Smith Rock State Park, warning dog owners to keep their animals on leash at all times.
Jamie Kanski, regional coordinator for PET, said most people know the rules inside the park, but will let their dogs run loose when they cross park boundaries.
“What’s happening is they go up the trail and it’s adjacent to the irrigation canal system. It’s extremely swift and dangerous for people and animals. And, oftentimes, the dogs will try to jump in to cool off or get a drink, and they get swept into the canal system,” she said.
At least two dogs have died in the area recently, one just this past weekend.
A new sign will be installed near the entrance to the park to encourage pet owners to keep their animals safe regardless of where they are.
Canals can be dangerous anywhere.
Kanski said a dog ran from its owner near the Redmond Walmart and drowned in the nearby canal.
While looking for that animal, searchers found the body of another dog in the water.