Judged by a dog

I’m not afraid of many things. Spiders don’t bother me all that much. I’ve stood on top of some magnificent heights. I’ve enjoyed plenty of spook alleys and scary movies. But I’m afraid of dogs.

Not every dog, mind you, just the ones that like to bark and snarl at me. Most dogs I meet are perfectly harmless. But, I was a paperboy at one time, and, well, there might have been a vicious dog or two on my route. And so I’m a little nervous around dogs.

I was out on my morning walk a few weeks back, and as I was walking past the park in downtown, I saw a stray dog wandering around. My heartbeat quickened, and I told myself, no, this is not a vicious dog. I’ve seen plenty of stray dogs in the park, and even if some of them bark at me occasionally, none of them have maintained interest long.

However, as soon as the dog spotted me from across the park, he immediately began snarling and barking and running towards me. Fortunately, I’ve learned the worst thing to do in such an instant is to run away, so I calmly stopped walking and got ready to kick the dog in the nose.

But, thankfully, he stopped about five feet away from me, snarling and barking, which made him five feet less vicious than the worst dog on my paper route. So I turn to leave. But then he jumps in front of me, barking and snarling. So I turn to my left, and he jumps in front of me again barking and snarling.

After about a minute of this, and with no end in sight, I couldn’t come to a conclusion about what I should do. I’m not one to call the cops often, but without much recourse, I called 9-1-1. The dispatcher told me someone will be there in a minute.

So I stood there waiting, and the dog continued barking, when suddenly he lost interest and ran away. Of course, I have to stand and wait for the cop I just called, since that would be just impolite to suddenly leave the scene of the crime, er, attack… or something like that.

The dog ran down the street. There were several people working further down the street, and so I expected the dog to run down and start barking at them. But no, he sauntered on by, paying them no heed.

What? The dog ends up being not vicious at all. He just doesn’t like me. Sometimes, I think, all of us feel a little picked on, and boy, I sure did then. What was it about me he didn’t like? Did I smell funny? Did I walk the wrong way or something?

My brother worked at a pet store that had llamas. They didn’t spit that much, but one time, there was this clean cut guy they just didn’t like. Every time he tried walking down the pathway toward the llama pen, they started spitting.

Of course, all of us came to the conclusion immediately that he had some dark secret he was hiding. That’s absolutely ridiculous, but the llamas would know, right? Anyway, let’s hope that the llamas and dogs of the world aren’t good judges of character. None of us like having someone not like us, even if its someone of the four-legged variety.

Thank you to the Power County sheriff’s office for responding and trying to track down that brute. And for answering again when I sat on my phone and accidently called 9-1-1 a second time just an hour or so later.

Hopefully people are a little less judgmental than dogs and llamas.

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