Doing my walk on the flood wall the other night resulted in a most unpleasant incident. I was nearing the end of my exercise. I was winding down and moving slower for the cool-down. I see another pedestrian approaching with two lively dogs on leash. I nod my head and smile. Now I respect dogs. I pay them little attention and usually do not make eye contact. To do that interferes with the owner's ability to control their animal. Although there are times I would like to stop and make conservation with the little furry guys I cannot be sure what the relationship is between owner and pet. These dogs were coming at me in a frenzy, a whirling dervish, so to say, and I could tell the owner was having difficulty with the retractable leashes and instead of reeling them in they were coming at me at high speed. And they were barking. Not just yap,yap, yap but the kind of bark that involves growling and gnashing of teeth. A definite warning message of nastiness to come. They are circling me and all is chaos as I become tangled in the leashes. I am laughing nervously and the owner, a mousy little middle-aged lady does not
know how to rectify the situation. Then the miniature collie jumps at me and I feel teeth bite through my jeans and into my skin, behind the knee. I recoil and look at the owner unbelievably, your dog bit me! I am not understanding that this happened, not quite believing what happened. I am angry. "Your dog bit me! What is wrong with that dog? Your dog bit me! What if he goes after a child? Your dog bit me!" I keep repeating myself. The owner is flustered, "he's only bit one other person!" she says.
So let's wait until he bites - oh, say eight or nine people and then we'll talk. I can feel blood moving down my leg. She says the animals were abused in their last home and this is why he bites. Huh? I am thankful that kind folks take in formerly abused animals but this woman should not have done so. This dog needs a firm, consistent method and she is not capable of that kind of behavior. She is a milquetoast, irresponsible, excuse-making dolt who is clearly misguided. "You cannot control your animals and you shouldn't be walking them in public places," I tell her. She keeps coming toward me with the dogs and I back away trying to stay away from those crazy animals and those unreliable leashes. I can tell that this dog liked biting me. He is smiling wickedly and trying to leap at me for even more conflict. She wants to see my leg. She does not believe I was bit. I tell her she needs to stay back or I will kick the dog if he attacks me again. She looks at me alarmingly not understanding why I would hurt her baby. I gather my wits, get her identifying information and limp shakily to my car. She continues to walk her satanic hounds, looking for new victims. How did this happen? Back home I call the police and they will forward the information to Animal Control and pick up the animal for impoundment in the morning. I check myself into the ER - not how I wanted to spend my evening just back from vacation. "You haven't been here before," says the receptionist, "usually people that come to the ER have multiple admissions." I will try and not make this a routine. In the examining room the nurse chatters away. "Did you know that 90% of dog bites do not get infected and that 90% of cat bites do get infected?" Clearly cats are licking things they shouldn't be. Why is it that nobody can remember when they got their last tetanus shot? Back home with a sore arm and a bunch of paper work. Who needs a drink . . .
Three days later Animal Control calls, not good.
To be continued . . .