We have a dog that’s still fairly new to us, and his previous owners let us know that he’s scared of everything except snakes. They lived on a canal, and the dog realized while he was still just a puppy that those long slithery things made great toys. Luckily, we don’t live where snakes in the water are generally poisonous. But there are plenty of rattlesnakes around, so I don’t like it that he’s not scared of the one thing in his world that could actually, possibly harm him.
But then there’s that one part of the laminate floor by the back door where he first entered our house a few months ago. He wasn’t used to laminate flooring, only carpet, and his feet slid out from under him. He hasn’t gotten over that trauma. It was definitely the fault of that one bit of flooring, over in that corner. He’ll walk all over the rest of the room, never minding the same laminate flooring. But that one section . . . well, it’s just not to be trusted.
The stairs down to the basement. Wow, those are scary things. He won’t even come close to them, no matter how many doggie biscuits and treats I lay on the floor over there. Nope. Those monsters swallow up people every day, practically, and even if we call out in encouraging voices from halfway down, he’s sure we’re in real trouble and he’s not about to follow our dangerous examples into Who Knows What.
The laundry racks, wow. Those are scary things. Every week or two they come out and sit on the patio in the sun, with damp rugs or sheets or something draped over them. They have to be carefully avoided lest they Do Something Dangerous while an innocent dog is walking past.
|Hiding in bushes on the terrace|
The dog loves going for walks, but there are many, many scary things out there. Garbage cans being moved by people. Kids on bikes. Kids on scooters. Kids period, unless he knew them Before. Women pushing kids in strollers. All other adults, if they don’t have a dog with them (for some reason he’s fine if they have a dog. He loves other dogs). Garbage trucks. Street sweepers. Other big trucks. Vans. Cars pulling things behind them. The dog goes flat on the pavement when any big vehicles go past. Pieces of paper blowing down the street. A stray box. The drains in the gutters. Manhole covers.
Be careful out there. It’s a hugely scary world.