Friday, August 19, 2005

Stupid Dog Owners

Last night I was at the "Best of" screening for the SF 48 Hour Film Festival. The venue was Walk-in Movies, an outdoor theater (well, side of a house, really) overlooking the city from Potrero Hill. It was a fun night, even if Date No. 2 didn't win the big prize. However it did get "Best Title Sequence," so I was happy for my team.

Naturally, several people brought their dogs. No big deal. But early in the show, there was a large golden retriever mix that began to show some aggression toward a black lab that was seated near it. After a few snarls, the owners of both dogs calmed things down. Then a few minutes later, the same big retriever starting snarling at another retriever close by. Once again the owners calmed their dogs. And then they did nothing else. WTF. Separate those dogs, people. Hint. They are not fond of each other.

So of course, before the end of the night, the aggressive retriever lunged at the other one, and a huge dog fight erupted. The dogs reared up on their hind legs as they went at it. They were literally falling on top of the people resting on picnic blankets nearby. Wes actually thought for a moment that they were mauling a woman, because her sweater matched the color of their fur exactly. From his perspective, the dogs were right on her, rather than inches in front. There was much screaming, including from the owners, as if this was some surprise after leaving the dogs within lunge reach!

The owners tried to separate the dogs, but one of them slipped out of his leash... and then the fight was really on. The owners didn't want to get into the middle of it, because at this point they would've been bitten. Finally someone wised up and began throwing bottled water on the dogs. The two dogs were startled momentarily, allowing the owners to separate them. THEN the owners decided to move the dogs far, far away from each other.

I have to say, I really dislike dog owners who neither understand nor respect the violent potential their furry "pride and joy" has. They just can't imagine "Foofoo" or "Binky" lunging at another dog or person with the intent to do bodily harm. I am not a dog hater. When I lived in Boston, I volunteered on Saturdays as a dog walker for the MSPCA Animal Shelter, which more often than not meant I walked abandoned pit bulls. And I don't hate all dog owners. But *stupid* dog owners really irk me. There is something incredibly irritating at the utter look of shock they have when canine violence erupts. "Omg! This can't be happening!" Yeah, whatever. 1 oz of prevention...

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