I could literally murder the bastards i encounter while walking my dog
My dog isn’t perfect. In fact he is a sneaky, stubborn and self-righteous little bastard. He does not always listen to me and he always finds a way into the trash but I love him anyway. He is great with children and loves every person he has ever met. What I do not love, however, are the people I encounter when I am walking my four-legged ball of love. I understand that some people have had bad experiences with dogs in the past and their fear of dogs does not need to be justified. I do my best to keep my dog a reasonable distance away from people in general, unless they make it clear that they would like to interact with him. Because fear of dogs isn’t tattooed on the applicable individuals’ foreheads, I do not know that you are scared of dogs nor do I know what distance you need to be from my dog to feel safe. I will give everyone as much distance as the environment allows but if this is not enough space for the love of God don’t scream at me that you do not like dogs or that you are scared of dogs when there is little or nothing I can do about it. You know you are afraid. You clearly see that I am heading in your general direction with something that terrifies you. It is your responsibility to meet me halfway and do your best to move when you see my dog so that you still feel safe. Screaming at me and quickly moving away as I pass by is not the best way to handle this situation. I am not sneaking up on you. You see me and I see you. In order to achieve the best possible result, both of us need to adjust accordingly.
But what enrages me more than these individuals are some of the other dog owners I have encountered. My dog does not like other dogs. He is learning how to behave around other dogs but he is nowhere near perfect. I know that he is unpredictable around other dogs so I act accordingly. When I see another dog I change our path so that the two dogs do not get too close. Sometimes this means crossing to the other side of the street other times it means turning onto another street. What I cannot stand is when other dog owners assume that my dog is friendly with dogs. Maybe it is because I know my dog struggles with keeping his cool around other canines but I always assume that the other dogs I see are not interested in interacting with me or my dog. I don’t understand why other dog owners do not make the same assumptions or at least ask me if my dog is friendly before approaching my dog and me. Every incident (and I say incident to mean that my dog has barked or lunged in the direction of another dog. He has not caused any other dog any harm ever even in the instance when he slipped his leash) has been at least contributed to in part by the other dog’s owner. I am not shifting the blame in these situations. Ultimately he is my dog and he is my responsibility to control but if you follow me when I cross the street to avoid any possible altercations, you are definitely not making my job any easier. My dog is not a fighter. He will bark and lunge at another dog all day to scare the other dog away. He does not want to inflict harm. He just wants to let the other dog know that he or she is not welcome. For example, today he slipped his leash. I had just stepped outside with him and was quickly trying to take in the new surroundings. My dog saw the other dog before I did (totally my fault) and started to bark and lunge in that other dog’s direction. The owner of the other dog was so busy with a conversation that she was having with her human companion that she did not notice that my dog was in obvious distress. Before I could pick him up, my dog had wiggled his way out of his leash and collar completely. I tried to get the other owners attention, saying I was so sorry and that he had slipped his leash. She was not paying any attention. My dog confronted her dog and barked and lunged (never making contact) and that was when she finally noticed my dog. She stopped dead in her tracks as I was chasing my leash and collarless dog around. She did absolutely nothing. She said absolutely nothing. She just watched me chase my dog around. After a few seconds I finally grabbed my dog and started to walk away. I turned around to apologize (once again) and she stared at my like I had just killed her first born son, eyes wide and jaw scrapping against the pavement. Throughout the entire ordeal, she was so oblivious to her surroundings that she must have thought I set my vicious mutt of a dog on her beautiful little purebred angel intentionally. Yes, this whole ordeal was primarily my fault and I readily admit that. However, dogs are animals and often unpredictable. As such, as an owner you need to be alert to your surroundings. And I understand. From her ignorant and unaware perspective my dog alerted her to his presenceß quite suddenly. She did not know if my dog would bite her if she tried to pick up her own dog. And to be honest, I also did not know if her dog would bite me. However, there was something that really bothered me about how silent she remained throughout the whole ordeal. Could her complete lack of action really just be shock? That look on her face of utter horror was not only completely unnecessary but also absolutely ridiculous. Your dog was completely unscathed with not a scratch or bite or any mark of confrontation on him. The only animal rattled from the incident was my dog who was growling in my arms. My dog is not perfect and I am working with a personal trainer to get him better. I have paid for countless hours of private lessons and group lessons. I work diligently with him everyday to build up his skills and tolerance of other dogs. I am trying my best and I am not going to lie, I get overwhelmed at times. My dog is my responsibility but is it really too much to ask for others to be aware of their surroundings to help me out just a little?