Thursday, January 10, 2008

Blue Lipped Terror

Claire has always been a little leery of dogs. We live in a neighborhood with many dogs so it's been fairly easy to keep her leeriness under control. The barkers have always been the hardest to deal with. The walkers are generally easy. We see them coming at us and Claire balks. So I pick her up or let her hide behind my legs while I talk to the dog and owner and Claire gets comfortable. Some walk on by, others dally to let their dog get a little attention. Claire had managed to get comfortable enough to actually touch a dog a handful of times.

Last night, Claire and I were walking home from the mechanic. An older man was walking his small dog behind us on a long leash. The dog, excited by the prospect of a child, snuffled up between us. Claire hadn't realized he was back there, so she was startled. She screamed and flat out ran. I tried to get to her but the dog was between us still trying to catch Claire. The owner did absolutely nothing beyond saying, "It's alright. He's a nice dog." After what seemed like forever, I finally managed to snatch Claire up. She was so scared that she wasn't breathing. Her lips were blue and her eyes were wild.

I carried Claire for a block while I tried to settle her down. Eventually, she did calm down enough to walk on her own while holding my hand. Then a Weimerauner came around the corner. Claire screamed and took off again although the dog was half a block away. This time, thank goodness, the owner had a shred of sense and he kept his distance while trying to reassure Claire. But still, we have started a little phobia here and that we have to deal with. There's no way that we can live here and not run into a dog on every block.

9 comments:

Jen said...

Oh poor Claire!!

Sarah said...

Ugh, I feel your pain. Jane is also dog-phobic, and some dog owners just don't understand. They think you must be some sort of irrational loon for being leery of their adorable pooch.

Kelley said...

Brendan is fearful too (which is surprising to me since we had a big dog when he was a baby/toddler). A little fear is probably better than being overly eager around unfamiliar dogs but that first dog owner certainly didn't help matters!

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Abbie's mom said...

There is no excuse for a dog owner not seeing how scared she was and grabbing the dog. Even if they are convinced they have a "nice" dog anyone can tell that a child running and screaming doesn't really care about "nice" or not.

Real World Martha said...

Why is it that so many people don't realize how scary it is to have a strange dog come up to them. I have a dog and love him but I don't under estimate him. I tell my children (I have known dogs to turn on their owners) what to watch out for and how to treat a dog. I wish people would not let their dogs out with no control.
Blessings
Debbie aka The Real World Martha(S)

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