15 October 2006

Put your dog On. A. Leash. Dammit.

OK - if you live in an urban (or, I suppose, suburban) area (read, neighborhood), you just gotta keep track of your dog.

I have the Bad Dogs, and they are indeed Bad. Casey loves to run off. Sparky loves to run across roads looking for people willing to pet him. People don't MIND Sparky, but the road is not a safe place for a dog. People DO mind a German Shepherd who loves chasing kids on bikes, so wandering free is NOT a safe place for Casey.

The solution here is simple. My dogs don't wander outside. Our backyard is fenced (a requirement when we rent). The dogs don't go from the front door to the car if we don't have a firm hold on them. When we walk, they have leashes (and they WEAR them).

I just got back from taking them for an evening walk. As we neared the house, we had TWO decent-sized dogs come running up on us from the front, doing that creepy low jackal run.

I hate that. Of COURSE they weren't on leashes (one wasn't even wearing a collar). And of COURSE they had no people.

I yelled at them (sergeant voice! "HEY! GO HOME! GO HOME!") and they drew back. I scooped up Sparky and dragged Casey on down past them. I kept looking back until I saw they'd developed an interest in a neighbor's trash.


Listen - I love dogs. Love em love em love em. I love ALL the dogs. Ugly ones, smelly ones, ornery ones and hairy ones. I love my next door neighbor's pit bull, and pet her daily.

I DO NOT LOVE packs of unleashed dogs.

1. If your dog is running around the neighborhood unrestrained, there's a good chance it'll get hit by a car. That sucks.

2. If your dog is running around thinking it's part of a pack, charging other dogs, that ain't good either. I love all the dogs. I love mine best. Your unleashed dog attacks one of mine? That will go badly for your dog. That sucks.

3. Unrestrained dogs consistently attack people down here. If your dog ATTACKS someone, that's bad. For you AND the dog. Also sucks.

Keep track of your dog. A neighborhood is not an appropriate place to let your dog roam. Bad things can happen to it, and it's not fair to the dog.