If things had gone differently, I wouldn’t be here typing this. I would probably be at #RedBankAnimalHospital, #AnimalControl, or #MiddletownPolice. My dog is not there to be barked at, ignored, or to be caused to pull me and embarrass me when she goes #redzone because of your stupid mistakes.
Yes, you have a dog. Or two, or three.
Yesterday, on a peaceful walk through a county park, Missy decided to get antsy over a actually beautiful, fully grown, mildly reactive #GermanShepherdDog. This worked out well. Missy called the pack, not a big deal and I was only reprimanded by one couple nearby to give her love and attention. I promised to do that. Uh. She’s not spoiled rotten yup.
I told my human companions, that as far as letting Missy meet the strange #GSD, they are known for their bite along with other pups, http://dogbitelaw.com/images/pdf/Dog_Attacks_1982-2006_Clifton.pdf so it would be out of the order at the moment.
Come today, and the weather is not so bad as it’s been, and another walk. I have not been walking Missy to our local park lately, since a neighbor has a #GSD which he often stands on his front lawn with, who barks at us. And another neighbor acquired a puppy last year which they keep tied by the neck by a rope on a fence, who barked at us from day one. The dog runs to the end of its rope and creates a racket.
On the other side, another neighbor, across our main road, has a brown whatthehell is it dog – from across the street, from down its block, it looks like a huge, overgrown #Chow. I’m thinking it’s some kind of an exotic foreign inbred Chow/Mastiff/Lion dog mix. And its little companion is a black and white pit mix. The little pit mix starts the alarm, and guess what. They are behind not a six-foot, not an eight-foot, but a four-foot fence which the larger dog whatever it is, can almost reach with the top of its huge, large-toothed head. Luckily, its build prevents it from jumping, but what if it got a running start? What if the little terrier figured out how to climb it? What if they have been working on an escape hole that the owner doesn’t know about?
So we keep walking, Missy and I, sort of hiding behind the overgrown brush on the sidewalk. Sure. We get to a crosswalk. Now I hear barking, and a small #Chow behind a fence joins in.
We get to the other side. Here comes a black pickup truck. Not only a white and brown pit out the window, but another dog at the other window. And the best thing of all – a huge, fully-grown, male(?) #GSD in the bed of the pickup, barking and leaping around. What miracle prevented that dog from just jumping over the rim of that pickup and coming on to us?
They kept going, and usually I have the wherewithal to click a pic of that license plate, just in case. But not today. Missy and I made it all the way to a park that I’d never been in. Its main attraction is a great basketball court, and it is mown and clean with lots of brush on either side for us to walk in the shade. So we do so. I don’t know by what miracle I looked down a path. And…
THERE WAS A LARGE #GSD SNIFFING AROUND NOT 400 FEET AWAY. I immediately turned Missy around and actually RAN!!!! All the way to the entrance, and ACROSS THE BUSY ROAD. Missy must have been glad we turned around, but I haven’t panicked like that in several years. What made me not walk on the other side, where I would have missed the loose dog, I can only say there are angels.
Once we got across the street and I turned around, there was the guy from the truck with the other two dogs, all off the leash, and the #GSD was sniffing where we had been. The pit was running towards the road, but we were across it and I waved to the owner, who waved back. So what was that supposed to accomplish! But my strategy was that if his dogs broke and ran to us they would have to navigate a busy 40 MPH road full of cars first.
Sure, we got home. But we walked on some easements and lawns as I thought we could duck behind a tree if the guy drove past us on his way back to his street. If anyone worried, I would have told them to wait for what was coming behind me.
So, Missy is safe at home. All our evasion tactics worked. I am at my wits’ end to find a safe place for her. The truth is we have a big yard where she can get a head of steam on. We have wonderful neighbors who love and respect dogs and other animals. But there are a few who make it impossible to relax on a simple thing like a dog walk. It feels like people don’t care what you think, and let their dogs do what they want, confident, falsely, that they have control. That’s stupid. Then you have a predator on your hands reacting to prey, or bait. What to do?
So, waste bag in one hand, extra leash on the other, I stand in defense of my dog. She is not bait. So stop assuming you have to treat her like it.