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Irresponsible People: Dog Attack

How is it that some people take zero responsibility? I experienced this first-hand when my dog Jake (RIP) was mauled by a much bigger dog.

The Blame Game

To make it worse, they actually tried to blame Jake!

They insisted that Jake instigated the attack, despite the fact that it was their dog who’d come barreling towards us and mauled Jake. They insisted that their dog was the injured party, despite the fact that he was the one with his jaws locked around Jake. They insisted that Jake hurt their dog, despite the fact that it was Jake who ended up with huge lacerations while their dog was completely unscathed.

Habitually Irresponsible People

In hindsight, I could see that it was clear from the people’s hysterical reaction to their dog charging us, that they knew their dog was going to attack. (I still beat myself up about not realising this, and not quickly picking Jake up.)

It was also clear from their actions after the attack (lying about their names, lying about not owning a phone, and running away as quickly as possible), that this had all happened before. In other words, these people, knowing full well that their dog was not dog-friendly in the least, allowed him to run about off-lead (and in an on-lead area too).

Irresponsibility Mixed With Smugness And Arrogance

Not only did those people take no responsibility at the time, they ignored the letter from my lawyer asking them to pay Jake’s vet bill, and smugly told me (when I had the misfortune of bumping into the woman during a walk with Jasmin) that I had fussed about nothing. 

As you can see, no, I haven’t forgiven. And, no, I haven’t forgotten. During the attack Jake was shaken within an inch of his life, and ended up with brain damage. Jake suffered terribly in the last four years of his life from neurological problems due to this attack, and it infuriates me to know that those awful people have always arrogantly denied any responsibility.

Well, I guess I’ll stop there, as I don’t really have anything constructive to say - all I’ve got is angry ranting, I’m afraid. I just wanted to vent.

Post Script: Almost Another Attack

It's 2015 as I write this, and so it's been six years since the late Jake was attacked. And once more I had the misfortune of bumping into that horrible woman and her unfortunate dog, while I was out walking Jasmin.

As soon as she saw me, the woman started coiling the lead around her hand. She sat down on a low wall, and hit her poor dog on the rump in an attempt (I'm assuming) to get him to sit down.

The anger started welling up inside me from the moment I saw her, and as Jasmin and I walked past, I asked, “Is that [the dog's name]?”. The woman didn't answer.

We kept on walking, and I said, “You’re [the woman's name], aren’t you?”. Again she was silent. I knew that she knew exactly who I was, and was purposely ignoring me...and my anger was increasing as every second ticked by.

Then, as she got up to walk away, I said, “I know you. You’re that junkie skank.” That's when she finally decided to respond, but I couldn’t hear what she said as we both continued to walk away from each other.

Then she suddenly turned to face us, unravelled the lead and yelled, “Attack, attack, attack!” as she and her dog ran towards Jasmin and me. I called her bluff, and turned to face her. (I figured that, as incredibly stupid as she is, she knows exactly what kind of damage her dog is capable of; and, knowing that, she wasn't so stupid as to allow her dog to attack one of my dogs for a second time.)

So I stood my ground, and she stopped in her tracks. I said, “No, don't stop. Keep coming while I take a video”, and I got my phone to record. But I should have thought of doing that much earlier on, because it was way too late, and in the end I only got a shot of her walking away. As she got some distance from us, she yelled something out which I couldn’t hear (an insult, no doubt). She laughed maniacally at her own comment, and that was the last I saw of her.

I immediately called the police who came to take my statement. They said because the woman had not completely let go of the lead, they could do nothing. They said that because I wasn't hurt, they could do nothing. And, most shockingly, they told me that because I'd said something to provoke her, they could do nothing.

I was stunned! I pressed them: "So because I insulted her, you're going to do nothing? Are you seriously saying that insulting someone gives them licence to do whatever they want in response?" And evidently, yes, it does. It would have been a different story, the police told me, if I'd been seriously injured or killed, though. (Apparently the police spring into action immediately when you're mortally wounded or dead.) 

That fact is, because both the police and the council did nothing after the attack on the late Jake six years ago, this horrible woman is strutting about thinking she can do whatever she wants.

The reason she ran at me yelling "Attack!" was to rub my nose in the fact that she'd got away with her dog attacking mine and damaging his brain six years ago. She paid no fine, she paid no vet bills - she got away with it. So she feigned threatening me with her dog as her way of saying: "I can do anything, and you can't stop me." And she's absolutely right, because no one with the power to put her in her place has done so. I'm powerless and she knows it, and her pretend-attack was her way of giving me a slap in the face. 

But the biggest slap in the face of all is that the authorities seem to consistently go out of their way to do absolutely nothing. Because the law stipulates that they're obliged to take action, as Section 17 of the Companion Animals Act of NSW 1998 states:

Dog must not be encouraged to attack

(1) A person who sets on or urges a dog (other than a dangerous, menacing or restricted dog) to attack, bite, harass or chase any person or animal (other than vermin) is guilty of an offence, whether or not actual injury is caused.

Section 17 continues on, and you can read it for yourself by clicking here: NSW Companion Animals Act 1998, Section 17.

Yet the authorities insist on doing nothing, and at the end of each encounter with this horrible woman, all that happens is that I end up feeling more powerless and more furious than ever.

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Adopt a homeless animal instead - they all deserve a second chance

It's estimated that 130,000 dogs and 60,000 cats are killed every year in Australia because there are not enough homes for them all. And the global numbers amount to millions upon millions every single year.

Puppy mills are a major contributor to the terrible problem of overpopulation. Puppy mills are essentially 'dog factories' where dogs are forced to churn out litter after litter, with no thought for the welfare of the dogs and all thought for profit. The dogs live in appallingly dirty, cramped conditions all their lives, and when they no longer serve their purpose they're killed, dumped or sold to vivisection laboratories.

Petshops fit into the picture because puppy mills are generally where petshops get their animals from. Furthermore, having animals in shop windows encourages impulse purchases, and adding an animal to your family should be a conscious, careful decision - NOT one to be made while shoe shopping.

Breeders contribute enormously to the tragic statistics above too. And it doesn't matter whether they're professional breeders or backyard breeders, and whether they breed for profit or not, because while there are homeless animals sitting on death row in shelters, any and all animal breeding is utterly irresponsible.

Now, here's where you come in. You can either be part of the problem or part of the solution. You can either buy animals from puppy mills, petshops or breeders and be part of the problem. Or you can adopt from a shelter or rescue organisation and be part of the solution.

If I haven't convinced you, visit your local shelter to see the homeless animals. Let their innocent faces convince you that adopting is the only responsible choice to make.

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