Before I update the personal and relevant to everyday happenings in the world of MOI…yeah…me, I want to do an update on my dogs. Scout and Chevy have learned to love each other. It took no small amount of time to get them to that point and we kept them separated by a double fence for almost two months before we began to introduce them to each other face-to-face.
Scout has learned to deal with Chevy quite well. They only had one small eruption with each other and I blame that on my not being aware. Just when I thought I had all the wrinkles worked out and life was one big happy family, one more major incident happened.
I’ve taken four falls in the last two years and the last one was the one I’m noting here. The tale unfolds with me thinking I had worked out all possible ways that I could have a ‘dog incident.’ I had been walking the desert early morning with Scout and my neighbor across the road (Molly’s owner) had taken to putting his dogs in the house at that time of morning. I put Scout on a leash until I hit the desert so she couldn’t create havoc through the fence with my neighbor’s dogs.
This particular morning, when I started out, I noticed that my neighbor had a new dog…a little black mix. He had five already and this made number six. When I got to my neighbor’s gate, (it’s inset about 10 feet) the little black dog and four of the others were out in the yard and my neighbor was working in the yard by the gate.
Like a dumbshit, I stopped to talk to him, asking about the new dog. His other dogs were going crazy, barking and snarling, as was Scout. I thought all was under control as Scout pulled on the leash trying to get out of it and then the taut leash went limp. Scout had backed out of her collar!!!
The little Terrier that likes to bark his ass off and run up and down the fence – about 1/5th the size of Scout and Chevy – had stuck his head through the field run fence. Scout took a massive bite out of the Terrier’s head and never let go. I named the Terrier “Widget” but his name is Humphrey.
Widget’s whole head was clamped tight and Scout wasn’t letting go. Widget screamed and cried, Scout held on and pulled back…we’re talking 90 pounds of Scout vs. Widget’s possible 30 pounds. The neighbor’s other dogs were going insane at the same time as I was screaming “SCOUT! NO!” and the neighbor held on to Widget.
I tried sticking my fingers between Scout’s upper and lower teeth, they were clamped down so tight I couldn’t get my fingers past her teeth. Still the dog uproar screaming, barking, insanity was in full effect.
For some idiot reason I kept screaming, “SCOUT, NOOOOO!” And I punched her in the top of the head trying to get her to stop. For what seemed like an eternity but was probably only a never ending lifetime to Widget that only lasted about a minute, it finally dawned on me that the only way to make Scout let go was to choke her out. I wrapped her leash around her neck and started cinching it tighter and tighter with my left hand.
She finally let go!
As she did, she backed into me and I lost my balance and went down on my back. I could see her paws coming at my face and turned my head to the side but I didn’t loosen my hold on the leash other than to allow her to breathe. She was standing over me, bloody froth on her lips, and I kept saying, “NO SCOUT! NO!” as Scout slobber, froth, and Widget blood ran down my arm and dripped on my neck and hoodie.
I couldn’t get up. To do that I would have had to loosen my hold on the leash. So I laid there, keeping Scout from trying to take another run at the fence and dogs.
The neighbor started herding his dogs into the house and as soon as he got them there, he came outside the fence to help me up and walked me back to my gate. I never let go of Scout. She had a really bloody left eye and I think I did that to her when I was punching her in the head. It cleared up within a few days.
I had bruises on my leg, my hip, my glute, scratches down my chin and my shoulder where Scout’s paws got me when I went down but it was nothing compared to what poor Widget went through.
I didn’t see the neighbor until a few days later. He said Widget was bleeding badly and they took him in to the Vet who started cauterizing puncture holes because the bleeding wouldn’t stop. Scout broke Widget’s jaw. Just thinking about it makes me feel sick all over again.
The vet wanted to keep Widget overnight but the neighbor said Widget seemed distressed (no shit????) and felt he would be better off at home. The vet said that if Widget ate and drank, he should be OK. The neighbor said they had been giving Widget his medication in pieces of hotdog and he had been eating and drinking.
I felt horrible for a number of reasons. I don’t believe I have to point out each reason because if you’ve ever owned a dog or cat, you understand where I’m coming from. The expense of what my neighbor went through was a huge part of it. He told me not to worry about it, that it was a little over $1,000 but they had some money put up to take care of it. Good Lord! What a generous effort from my neighbor.
I still feel guilty about the whole incident. I told my neighbor that if I hadn’t stopped to visit with him, it never would’ve happened. He was forgiving and kind…much more than most people I’ve known in my life would have been.
About 10 days later I saw Widget racing up and down the fence with a cone on his head, barking his ass off as if nothing had happened. I was relieved as hell.
I can’t seem to get past the fact that every time I think I have the dog situation under control, I don’t!