Tuesday, April 26, 2011

My protector

A couple of months ago, I wrote a post about Dog. (His name is Bobby, but nobody calls him that.) He has claimed me as one of his people, and today he took on a new role.

I went for a run this afternoon. It was my first run in the village since being bitten. I was only slightly nervous about running past the house with that dog, but a friend who worked in a kennel for years gave me some great tips on dealing with angry dogs; so with my new knowledge, I felt confident that I will not be bitten again. (Basically, I will walk past that house from now on and kick the dog if it attacks me again.)

Before heading out, I stepped into the lower house to let Tea know that I was going running. She cringed and said, "Be careful!" I promised that I would be.

Dog on the porch of the lower house
As I walked across the yard to the gate, Dog loped up alongside of me, nudging at my hand for some pats. I ruffed up his thick mane and patted him on the shoulder. As I opened the gate, he darted out into the road ahead of me. He often wanders around the road -- there is no leash-law in Georgia. I turned to run up the road, and Dog bounded along after me. He settled in right beside me. I looked down at him, grinning; he looked up with a typical dog-smile, big pink tongue lolling out of one side of his mouth.

I thought that he would drop off after a minute or two. Nope. He stayed right beside me. Now and then he chased a pig or a goose that was in the road, but after each short excursion, he trotted back to me. Sometimes he ran along in front of me, tail streaming out behind him. He seemed to sense that I was a little nervous about encountering the angry dog again. His attitude to every dog we met was, "Hey! This is my person. Keep your teeth off her!"

When we got to the scene of the attack, the mean dog was nowhere to be seen. The kids and mom of the house were all out in the yard. I waved and said hello -- they asked how I was doing, and I told them that I was well. We all smiled. They laughed when they saw Dog with me -- they liked seeing that I had a body guard.

I'm not sure, but this may have been Dog's first sustained run. After about 10 minutes, I knew that he wasn't going to leave me. I decided to do a short 30 minutes instead of my planned 45 so that he could stay with me the whole time. If he keeps joining me, he'll be able to go for longer runs in no time. But I thought I'd start him slow.

Speaking of slow, he slowed down on the return run. A few times, I ran in place while he caught up to me, tongue hanging way out of his mouth. But he did it! He ran a little more than 5 kilometers.

Might I really have a running partner for the rest of my time here?

1 comment:

  1. Wow this is such a great story Stef! :) I couldn't help but smile the whole time I was reading it! It was like God was watching out for you and showing you He was there! What a beautiful dog! Thanks for sharing this!

    ~Danielle Gallaher