On Monday, while out for a walk with my neighbour, a Beauceron (French Doberman) ran up the road out of its house, where it was unattached, and tried to attack my dog. My neighbour had one of those pointy walking sticks with her, and managed to fight it off before it could get its teeth into Porridge. Being a retreiver, Porridge just whimpered pathetically and did nothing! I am petrified of dogs with snarly voices and snappy teeth, so I joined Porridge doing nothing with my mouth open in shock, but at least not whimpering. My neighbour took us further along the road to a beautiful pathway across a long forgotten valley which wound through trees beside a fast running stream. After two hours we arrived back home, my feet hurting but I was delighted with the new path and determined to find it again.
On Wednesday, I set off alone with Porridge.
Remembering the nasty dog I made some effort to approach the path from the other direction.
You can imagine my horror when the same dog charged out at us, and I realised that its house was at a crossroads and I was on the other road.
It went for Porridge like there was no time to waste, and I screamed blue murder. An elderly man arrived and pulled it off, saying that it belonged to his son. He said he didnt like tying up dogs, and they were thinking of having it put down anyway...
I was upset at this and pointed out very nicely that it was possible to buy fencing to keep it on their property...or even a muzzle. I told him that if he paid my vet's bill and promised to keep it under control in future, I would take it no further and not make an official complaint. (Twice in one week was a bit too much!)
On Friday I called back with the vet's bill (Porridge had to have stitches on her shaved neck, course of antibiotics etc, etc)
Man, son, and grandson were in the garden. No sign of the dog.
Son was very hostile, saying that he didnt like being threatened, and that I could have gone about things in a nicer way. Grandson had been crying for hours he said.
Because he had taken the dog to the vets ...
and had it killed ...
and it was all my fault...
I am ashamed to say that I lost my temper, and explained in vehement French about fences and muzzles. I suppose he wanted someone to blame, an excuse for doing something that he already wanted to do and was ashamed of.
They stared at me in that hostile way and I could hear them thinking "These foreigners come over here walking along our roads as if they own them!"
And with a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach I grieved for England in a way I havent done for years.