Contrary to what Danny seems to believe, I am not trying to keep him from lunging at passing dogs while we are out in the neighborhood because I am a control freak. I am trying to keep him from lunging at passing dogs for the safety of everyone within a 10-foot radius.
Today’s case: We were running for the first time in days (my sinuses have been killing me lately). The sun was out, it was relatively warm, and we were happy. We were approaching a woman with a wee baby strapped to her chest and a little white pug mix snarling at the end of her leash. She was no fool. She reeled him in and moved over. And over. She finally started crossing the street.
Obviously, the dog was not in a mood to sniff butts. Danny did not get the message, despite my having him on a short leash at my side as I attempted to run him past the little white dog. He lunged anyway, and I stepped on his back foot. I went down on my hip, and he sat with a quickness — which is what he does when he thinks he might be in trouble.
We waited for the poor woman with the wee baby and the white dog to get out of range, then continued on our run. It was a short one, since we hadn’t been out in days, and we finished without any limping or whining from either of us.
But, when we got home, I had a nasty scrape on my ankle bone, and Danny had a couple cuts on his toe where the tread of my sneaker had caught his foot. We are cleaned up and bandaged, with a round of antibiotic ointment for everyone. Danny’s bandage is in a particularly awkward spot, and he doesn’t like that his toes can’t spread as far as usual when he walks, but that’s what you get for lunging when I say no.