Can you even believe that it is THAT TIME OF THE MONTH again? As in, time for the link up that Holly from HoHoRuns and I host every 3rd Saturday of the month? This is a monthly opportunity to clear the air. To get it off your chest. Believe me, I have a ton of potential posts brewing. So many annoyances, so little time, right?
But today, this post is going to the dogs. Specifically, dog owners. And not all dog owners, but those irresponsible ones. You know them, I know them, and if you're one of them, you know it. I've got a few pet peeves (pun intended). Yep, I've got a bone to pick with you..
But there's that one guy who leaves his poop bags on the curb in front of my house. Why? I don't know. Does he think that the garbage man is going to pick them up? (he doesn't) And then there was the day Mr Poop Bag was shoving his poop bag into the sewer in front of my house. I was heading out for a bike ride when I saw it. I couldn't help myself. I yelled at him. And yet, I still see him walking past my house, dropping poop bags all over the neighborhood. Someone told me he's not right. Clearly.
Dog poop seems to be a big problem for dog owners. When I'm out running on the paths in the forest preserve, there seems to be a lot of poop on the path. The park districts and forest preserve have installed poop bag dispensers but people still leave the poop on the path. Listen people, if you can't handle the poop, you shouldn't have a dog.
What about those owners who leave their dogs out in the yard for hours, and the dog barks incessantly? One of my neighbors has a beagle, and he bays. It's horrible. Have you ever heard that sound? My sister had a run in with her neighbor recently over a barking dog. She was sitting outside on her deck and the neighbor's 2 little dogs were yipping for about an hour. She finally went over to their house and said something to them. I wonder if they even realized it? I never leave my dog out once she starts barking because I'm afraid of someone throwing a poisoned steak over the fence. I've heard of that happening.
Quite often when I'm running on the paths, I encounter dogs that are running off leash. This means I have to stop and walk or the dogs come after me. "Oh, he won't hurt you," the owners tell me. Really? How am I supposed to know that? We have leash laws here, which I am not shy about reminding people.
When a dog comes bounding after me, I assume the worst. What if the dog bit me? I see a lot of dogs being walked when I'm out on the run, and even on leash, the owners often have a hard time controlling them. There's one dog who lunges at cars. His owner isn't a big man, and I've seen the dog pull him down, trying to chase a car. Often, I get barked at and growled at. One time, years ago, I was running, and a dog (who was actually on leash) pulled away from his owner and jumped on me as I ran by. I didn't get hurt, but it scared the heck out of me. The owner didn't say a word. A few weeks ago, one of my neighbors was out walking his new dog (also on leash) and he lunged at me. My neighbor just laughed, and said, "he's a puppy!"
Yes, an 80 pound pit bull puppy. Now when I mentioned this before, a reader commented that I should blame the owner, not the breed. And I agree with that, but you have to admit that pit bulls are a little bit more intimidating than say, a shih tzu. Pit bulls don't have the best reputation, and if I come upon one I'm going to be a little more scared than I would with a smaller dog. I've worked in the ER, and I've taken care of countless little ones who were bitten by the family dog. Mostly little dogs, but I took care of a little girl who had her scalp ripped off by her mother's boyfriend's pit bull. Devastating. But any dog will bite. I had a cocker spaniel (not my sweet Cleo) who bit a friend's son when he stuck his hand in her mouth. I felt terrible about it, and apologized, but I lost a friend over that incident. Last week, my mom's friend brought her new golden retriever puppy to their house. He's big now, and he was so excited, he lunged at her and knocked my mom flat on her back. She didn't get hurt, but she was really shaken by the whole thing.
Please don't hate on me for this post. I just want everyone to be a responsible dog owner. I love dogs. I have lived with dogs my whole life. As much as they are part of our families, we have to remember that dogs are animals, with animal instincts. Dogs are natural hunters, and they have the instinct to chase. Even the best behaved dog will act like a dog at times.
Do you encounter dogs when you are out for a run? Off leash? Ever had a "bad" encounter with a dog?
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