Skip out fright, into the night. you don't scare me said The Bear.
Today's Monday Dog is my old dog Mr Fred. He died a few years ago. We had to put him down as he had a million and one things wrong with him. Not least the fact that his eye was about to burst! Poor thing. Still he had a good long life, 15 years of it, and his death was better than the one most humans I know have to go through. He was given the needle, in his garden on what he would have thought was just another normal day.
Prior to us getting him I was terrified of dogs. I'd freeze up in fear if one was so much as 200 yards from me. It was a genuine phobia. The best possible cure was to buy one and face up to it. I remember realising he was just as scared as I was of the world on the first day we got him, as a puppy. We became good friends over the years and it's one of my regrets that I had to leave home and therefore stop walking him so regularly*.
I posted Fred The Dog today because I read this awful story recently about a brave little family dog which took on a couple of pit bulls in order to save it's owner. The full story is here but in summary there was a little dog called George who tried to fight off some marauding pit bulls in New Zealand. It was playing with some kids when the two dogs appeared. It apparently bravely jumped at them barking, despite the fact it was smaller than them and outnumbered. The poor thing lost its life but if there's a doggy heaven it'll be there now.
This is what I love about dogs and what I hate about people. Firstly, those two pit bulls should have been looked after better and the owners of them are directly responsible for their behaviour. Therefore people are bad. Secondly, George The Dog did the right thing and if you read the full story it was thanks to him that the kids, his friends, escaped with their lives.
I remember my dog Fred doing a similar thing once. He wasn't a violent creature but once, oddly, a sheepdog ran out of a house on my street and came straight for me. Initially I thought he was going for Fred but no, he jumped right at me. Without a thought Fred clamped his jaws on the other dog's neck as it tried to bite my hands.
I was f#cking terrified as the two dogs bit each other and the sheepdog's owner came running out of his house shouting at us. "Snoopy! Snoopy! Come back here!" he cried, in the surreal manner that only real life can throw up. I'd been almost bitten by a dog called "Snoopy". Madness.
I loved my dog Fred and I always will. If I ever get another, which I want to but don't have the room space, it'll always lie in Fred's shadow. He was in the mould of George from New Zealand whose death I mourn but life I celebrate.
Dogs are f#cking great!
*It reminded me of that awful last chapter of the original Winnie The Pooh stories where Christoper Robin grows up and leaves Pooh forever.