Dog Owner Cries Foul After Bike Path Crash

Woman urges bikers to be cautious after dog hit along lakefront

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A warning to dog owners. Chicago's lakefront bike paths can be dangerous to pets. A dog owner says she was walking her Yorkshire Terrier near North Avenue Beach when a bicyclist ran over her dog’s foot. Her dog is now in a cast with a couple of broken toes. NBC5’S Charlie Wojciechowski has the story. (Published Friday, Jun 21, 2013)

    The owner of an injured dog is speaking out against what she feels are dangerous conditions along the lakefront path near North Avenue Beach.

    Michelle Havrilla says on Thursday night she was walking Bella, her 4-year-old Yorkshire Terrier, when the accident happened.

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    "Bella was walking right on the side, along the side, having a great time, and a biker was going 30-40 mph speed racing and literally ran straight over Bella," Havrilla said.

    The dog suffered a couple of broken toes, but Havrilla worries that it could have been much worse. Her fears are echoed by other dog owners at the beach.

    "They go really fast and they don't keep their eyes out for pedestrians and dogs," dog owner Rebecca Cohen said.

    According to the Active Transportation Alliance, up to 70,000 people use the bike path on a busy weekend day, around 60,000 during the week.

    But some cyclists say that dog owners should shoulder some of the blame.

    "People have their dogs, and they have their leashes and they're the long retractable ones and the dogs cut across. I've flipped over my bike to avoid a dog, and I'm a dog lover ... it's dangerous," Eva Davidman said.

    Havrilla urges more caution is needed on the bike paths, but what she was really looking for and didn't get, was an apology from the cyclist that hurt her dog.