Rules & Regulations:
- Dogs may not be left unattended.
- The dog run is NOT a playground. Children under the age of 12 must be accompanied by an adult and should be closely supervised.
- Entry and use of the dog run is at your own risk.
- Skateboards, bicycles, scooters and strollers must be left outside the dog run.
- Clean up after your dog. Animal waste must be promptly removed and properly disposed of.
- Dogs must be licensed and have all shots and tags.
Should be pretty clear, right? Well... I was
playing guarding the people in the dog run and the other dog, a young, little black lab. Since it was quiet and there wasn't much going on, Momma was on the phone, and the little black lab's dad was on his phone too. Suddenly, a kid on a SCOOTER came zipping down the boardwalk along the fence, so I told Momma he was there and I barked and barked and ran along the fence with him. He looked like he was 6 or 7. Then, he started coming IN the first gate to the run, on his scooter. Momma grabbed my collar and got off the phone, pronto.
Momma: Where are your parents? Do you have a dog? Don't bring your scooter in here.
Li'l WTF: I want to come play with the dogs!!!!
Momma: Where's your dog? Do you have a grownup with you? DO NOT bring your scooter in here!
Li'l WTF: Why not?
Momma: Did you just hear my dog barking at you? He does NOT like scooters.
Big WTF (outside the dog run): I'm his dad. He wants to come in and play with the dogs.
(Li'l WTF starts opening the 2nd gate, but has thankfully left his scooter in the vestibule.)
Momma: This is a DOG RUN, not a playground. You can't just send your little kid in here to play with the dogs.
Big WTF: But he loves dogs, and he can't have one at home because his mom's allergic.
Momma: Do you see the rules posted on the door? They're there for a reason. These dogs aren't here for your kid to play with. People are not supposed to come in here without a dog, and kids are NOT allowed in here alone.
Big WTF: Oh, I'm watching him.
(During this time, Li'l WTF has been "playing", by which I mean taunting, the little black lab, whose dad is still on his phone. The little black lab is maybe 40-50 lbs, and starts jumping on Li'l WTF out of excitement. At this point, Li'l WTF starts screaming and runs to Momma and grabs her leg, and finally little black lab's dad comes over and pulls his dog off Li'l WTF who is still screaming and hanging onto Momma's leg while I am standing on the other side of her leg while she holds my collar. These people are WEIRD and very, very stupid.)
Momma: Oh you are? How are you "watching" him now?
Other Dog Dad ("introducing" his dog to Li'l WTF): She's very friendly, there's nothing to worry about. Look, she's very nice.
Momma: The dog run is for DOGS. It's not safe for small children. Take your kid to a playground!
Momma was so exasperated she put me on the leash and walked me out and around the park for a bit. Then she saw the Li'l WTF leave, so we started going back to the run, when who do we run into AGAIN but Li'l WTF on his scooter coming straight for us! Big WTF was nowhere in sight. Li'l WTF was hollering and making an awful racket on his scooter, and I could feel Momma's angry feeling rising again. She put her hand up like the stay command and she started yelling at him and she was all like, WHAT did I just tell you and YOU LEAVE US ALONE and I TOLD you not to bother us and you are going to get attacked by a dog someday if you keep it up and GO AWAY NOW!
And then she started walking away and he still tried to follow us on the scooter and Momma turned and yelled STOP FOLLOWING US and LEAVE US ALONE and then Big WTF saw us and he finally started calling his pipsqueak kid and left us alone. And the we went back to the dog run and played. The End.
Momma's note: Biggie was actually angelic through the whole episode even though I was secretly hoping that he would go cujo on the kid just to put the fear in him. But through it all he never growled, pulled or even twitched. This dumbass kid was so little he was pretty much eye-to-eye with Biggie. (dragging soapbox again) Biggie probably would have been fine and gentle with the kid but I just didn't want to reward Li'l WTF for his complete stupidity. What kid runs into a dog run to "play" with a dog that moments before was barking furiously at him on the other side of a fence? And what dumbass oblivious parent lets his kid do this, thinking that sitting on the other side of two latched gates is somehow "watching" his child? I don't know which pisses me off more. I had visions of this kid growing up to be the type who taunts a dog who is tied up or on the other side of the fence and then is outraged when the dog gets aggressive in response. WTFs start early.
(Little black lab's dad doesn't score any points with me either. He didn't notice when the kid came into the run (at first I thought it was his kid), then didn't come over to supervise his dog playing with Li'l WTF. Then, when Li'l WTF is running away from his dog, he's slow to get to the dog and THEN, despite the words I am having with Big WTF, does not question why the kid is in the run alone and does not teach the kid how to approach a dog. Although, granted, that's not really his job; it's the job of the WTF on the other side of the fence.)
Parents: whether you have a dog or not, make sure your child knows a) good manners upon approaching any dog, and b) that NO means NO. Provoking, taunting, teasing, poking, hitting, and grabbing are NEVER allowed. Every dog, no matter how friendly and calm, no matter how big or small, can be pushed beyond its limits. EVERY dog-child interaction must be closely supervised. A dog bite can happen in an instant, and it is not always the dog's fault.