Dog Bites Writer

I wrote a short film script called Saving Ernie in which a small, innocent dog comes to a sticky end (his ears catch fire). It was done in good humour and it was short-listed in a national competition last year (no actual dogs were harmed during the writing of the script). But I’m starting to wonder if dogs can read and if perhaps they didn’t like my script, which might explain why I was attacked by a pack of three of them last week. I still have a bite mark on my ankle as evidence. I thought normal film critics were bad enough.

In my previous blog I probably alienated all my Catholic friends by gently mocking the Pope. This time I need to pray for forgiveness for what I’m about to write, and I expect my dog-loving pals will go walkies. Don’t get me wrong I like some dogs, namely guide dogs, sheep dogs and any that might bring me brandy if I’m caught in an avalanche. I’m less keen on those that I think might bite me, which is most of them. I understand why someone living on their own could find a dog good company. But for other people, I don’t get it – why take on something that’s demanding, messy, destructive, expensive and often smelly? They must be barking. Even going out for a day or two can raise the inevitable question: “what will we do with Schwarzkopf?”

My ankle-biting incident happened while jogging on the local Common. Ask any jogger, postman or milkman what they think of dogs and they’ll lift a trouser leg to show you the scars. I know a postman who made fun of a dog which was barking at him through the front window. Moments later the dog ran round from the back of the house (the back door must have been open) and bit him on the arse. So now he has to drop his trousers to reveal his scars (that’s his excuse, anyway).

On a balmy summer’s day, the Common smells like a warm dog’s toilet, and there are few things that smell worse than doggy do-do. Some owners are considerate enough to clean up but here’s a weird thing: there are plastic bags of dog poop hanging from the trees. What’s that all about? Someone will go to the trouble of poop-scooping but then can’t be bothered to carry it to the nearest bin (there are special receptacles for that stuff – I don’t envy the person who has to empty them).

The term “walking the dog” seems to be a slight exaggeration. Most dog-owners I see on the Common are standing around talking to each other while their dogs are straining at their leads, trying to attack me. It’s more ‘dog talking’ than ‘dog walking’. I imagine the opening line of conversations is often something like “Oh he’s lovely; what is he?” A little shih tzu who wants to bite me, that’s what he is. God gave dogs teeth for a reason, and the reason is me.

That’s the end of my little rant about dogs. If they really can read, once they see this I’m dogfood.

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3 Responses to “Dog Bites Writer”

  1. Catherine Says:

    How unkind! What about the horse droppings? I think they smell much stronger. I notice as well that you haven’t mentioned the mushroom pickers. There must be an interesting story there. Where do they come from; why do they do it, what kind of lives do they lead? There must be some literary scope there.

    • I’ve never been bitten by a mushroom picker. I’ll take a wild stab in the dark but my guess is they pick them to eat and you’re right that there are some good story angles there. I saw some a middle-aged woman picking blackberries this weekend, and 100 yards down the road her husband was also picking. I wondered if 10 years before they might have been picking them together.

    • P.S. Catherine, I do like Betsy! And yesterday I watched a sheepdog in action – so now I like them too.

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