We left training class and I was chatting with a friend when we saw this small grey dog streak across the road. I handed over Mr. N to my friend and I left in pursuit. There were at least a dozen times when she ran across the pathway of a car and I was afraid she was going to get hit. She also blended in with the color of the street which didn’t help matters either.
She finally turned into a side street and I finally got to the point where I could throw treats in her direction and she stopped to eat them and would move a little closer. She was really, really skittish. I tried to get a look at her tags but she let out a horrible yelp when I reached for her collar.
At this point, my friend texted and asked where we were and she arrived shortly afterwards in her car. We tried using her dog as a decoy. The dog was interested but not enough to get near us. I corralled the other two dogs and my friend managed to coax the dog into a crate with copious amounts of hot dogs.
We called the owner and she came sauntering down the street. She said the dog repeatedly digs out under the fence and gets out although she was amazed to hear how far the dog had gotten this time (right in the middle of downtown traffic). My friend gave her some fencing advice and warned her that the dog had consumed an immense amount of treats.The woman thanked us, adding “hope this didn’t ruin your day” and left with her dog. We had spent 45 minutes chasing after her dog, terrified that the dog was going to get hit by a car in front of our eyes.
If Mr. N was lost, I would be in hysterics, calling every vet, shelter/rescue, and dog friend I knew and out plastering flyers all over the neighborhood. I would be so immensely grateful to whoever found him and would buy them dinner or make them a cake or bring them cookies for a year! Or all of the above. My friend and I were talking about how we needed to carry emergency cash so we could thank people who find our dogs.
Despite the ungrateful owners (I’ve found and returned over a dozen dogs at this point and they’ve all been pretty nonchalant), I still go after stray dogs, thinking what if this was Mr. N who was lost. The boyfriend’s philosophy is pretty much but Mr. N wouldn’t get lost. He is immensely velcro and doesn’t see the point of going places without me so it would take an extreme set of circumstances for him to get lost so I do mostly agree with the boyfriend but still.
Mr. N is microchipped and always wears a collar. But perhaps even more importantly, he is not hand shy or collar shy or skittish. A microchip or tags won’t do any good if a stranger can’t get close to your dog… If Mr. N was lost, he’d probably march right up to the nearest person he saw and be like, “Hello, I am lost. You need to find my human right now. And feed me!” That was one of the things I worried about with our foster pup. He did not like strangers and did not like going near them, even with food.