Dear Woman in My Neighborhood Whose Unleashed Dog Got in a Fight with My Leashed Dog,
Look, that sucked. It was late at night and I was taking my dog out for a walk after having left her alone in my apartment for a number of hours, so she already had anxiety about needing to go pee. Furthermore, the neighborhood dogs were all howling/barking, so that adds to the drama. We were just outside my dog’s territory–our house, and as I locked the gate, your small, unleashed dog came bounding up to my dog. I was apprehensive, since I did not know how your dog would behave or how my dog would react to a strange dog approaching her in the area she already feels bound to protect.
The ensuing dog fight let both of us know how our dogs felt about each other. After we managed to separate them, as you know, I unleashed verbal fireworks the likes of which Calle 28 has possibly never heard. While I’m not proud of myself for cursing, I am giving myself a pass because I was so upset at what was such an avoidable occurence.
I certainly didn’t appreciate your coming back around again a bit later to somehow try to make what happened my fault. I’m sorry you got bit and I’m sorry your dog got hurt–part of why I was so upset is because I don’t enjoy dog fights and I don’t want my dog to either get hurt or hurt another dog. If we would have been able to calm down later and talk rationally, I would have said these two things:
1. Don’t ever put yourself in the middle of a dog fight–you are guaranteed to get bitten. You don’t even know which of the dogs bit you–I kept pulling my dog back, but your unleashed dog just jumped onto her again and again. At a certain point, it’s got to be on, since I’m not going to just allow my dog to get hurt because you weren’t in control of your animal.
2. Leash your dog, period. You derisively made remarks about my dog not being perfect and needing a muzzle. No, my dog’s not perfect. Dogs are unpredictable, which is why she’s on a leash and always under my control. My dog doesn’t need a muzzle, your dog needs a leash.
I have stewed about this and felt bad about it for days, but the bottom line is that none of this would have happened if only you had chosen to follow the law and had kept your dog on a leash. For my part, I promise to try to not come so unhinged should this happen again–I can imagine it was frightening to witness my almost totally out of control temper (totally out of control would have been me hitting you when you touched my dog) and for that, I apologize.
Heather and Vinnie
Responsible Dog Owner and Normal Dog