Friday, July 27, 2007

a dog on the highway...

While driving to work this morning, traffic came to a fairly quick stop. There was a state police car on the side of the road, just sitting there - he didn't have anyone pulled over.

A few minutes later, I saw another statie on the side of the road coming towards me, in reverse. Also coming towards me was a dog. Walking. On the side of the highway.

I tried to open my side door but I couldn't get it to open fast enough with all of the stupid child safety things on it. Once the Statie got past me, I pulled over, opened the door, and grabbed a crate out of the back of my van.

I walked in front of the Statie while he watched where the dog went. The dog got trapped between the 2 police cars and headed towards the highway. At that point I started running. I was far enough away that I wouldn't spook the poor thing.

He safely crossed one side of the highway and then the other. The cars on the other side were driving at normal speed, but thankfully didn't hit the dog.

Two guys (animal control I'm assuming) crossed the highway as well. They were all, literally, playing in traffic on 495. The dog came out from the trees on the opposite side and one of the guys started running after him. I started yelling, "Don't chase him!", since, that's the last thing you want to do when you want a dog to come to you. It either becomes a game (you can't catch me) or it puts the animal in flight mode (fight or flight.)

They all came back to the side of the highway I was on. The dog ran into the trees on the side and one of the guys went in after him. I started walking along the trees, calling out in a high-pitched voice and clapping my hands. One of the Staties said I probably wouldn't want him to come to me because he was a Pit Bull and probably wasn't too friendly.

Now, I get that police don't always see dogs like this in a good way. They probably see them once they've been abused and are a danger to society. But, you can give the dog the benefit of the doubt while still protecting yourself in case anything happens. The situation doesn't need to be met with force automatically, only if necessary.

So, I walked along the trees, calling and clapping for some time, hoping to get another glimpse of the pup. I think it was a he, but I'm not sure - I'll just refer to him as a he. He was a medium sized Pit Bull, fawn and white, skinny but not in a completely starving kind of way. He had natural ears that hung down and a normal, erect tail. He wasn't growling at anyone and he didn't charge at anyone, he just tried to get away.

After 20 minutes or so, he didn't re-appear from the trees. The animal control guy said he was going to go look on some street that the highway was next to. Apparently that was one of the few stretches of highway that didn't have a fence blocking wild life from entering the highway.

I really hope that pup is ok. I hope someone with a little understanding finds him, sees that he's scared and doesn't automatically string him up because of his breed.

I wish I could talk to animals. :'(


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