I walked Hawken the Irish Wolfhound last night as I always do. As we went down the driveway toward Main Street (yes, we live on Main Street in small town), I saw another large dog on the road. Abby and I are always mindful of other dogs, particularly large dogs who approach our Chihuahuas. I quickly reeled in Hawken’s leash and told him to heel, which he did.
What happened next was mostly obscured behind the trees that line the road by our neighbor’s, the Nipps, house, but I was an earwitness to it. I heard the chatter of anti-lock brakes, skidding, and a thump, though not a loud thump. This was immediately followed by the terrified screaming and crying of a child.
Hawken and I walked on around to the Nipps’ driveway to see a white SUV pull into the driveway across the street. A woman got out and knocked on the door. A shirtless man and a child responded, and the woman seemed to comfort the child.
I didn’t see the dog anywhere.
I didn’t know why it was so unsettling until I walked a little farther with Hawken and made the mistake of imagining him getting hit by a car. At that moment, I told him to sit, then petted and praised him as much as I could.
My sister is fond of saying that anything our dogs to wrong – bite, growl, pee on the rug – is our fault. She’s right. It’s important to care for our pets, and keeping them in the yard and on a leash is at the top of that list.