June 9, 2003

A Dog Hit My Car

I say it that way because that's exactly the way it happened, and apparently my car got the worst of the deal. Cindy and I had just left home and were still on our street, doing about 35, when I saw our neighbor walking her two dogs, on leashes as always, on the left side of the road. I had no more than a second's notice, as the dog bolted from the yard to our right across the street to investigate the two animals on the other side. I had no chance at all to brake or swerve, only to brace somewhat for impact as he flashed into my field of vision. I don't think he ever saw the car. The sickeningly heavy thud of dog against car had us fearing the worst, and Cindy, dog lover extraordinaire, gasped and shrieked.

I immediately saw in the rear view mirror that the dog had survived as he ran back into his own yard. We stopped and went back, of course, and found three young children playing in the front yard with an equal amount of adult supervision as had attended the animal. The dog at first seemed to limp a bit, but within a minute was running around as if unhurt. "Mom" wasn't interested enough to come outside and speak with us about what had happened, and it wasn't until we went to leave that we noticed the huge dent in my rear door, just in front of the rear tire. The dog couldn't have weighed over 40 pounds, a stocky but short little mutt, but he came out on top in his encounter with a Toyota Avalon.

As college kids thirty years ago, Cindy and I learned the hard way about training dogs and keeping them on leashes and always safe from traffic, and in all of the years since, we haven't been without a dog for more than a couple of months. As such, we have a pet peeve about people who are careless about their dogs' well being. The owners of this dog couldn't have abused that animal any more if they had beaten him with a lead pipe. I heard someone say once that the best thing that can happen to a dog is to get hit by a car and survive without serious injury. This one probably learned its lesson. Would that the owners did too.

Posted by dan at June 9, 2003 11:55 PM