I’m tired of the red truck and the unleashed black dog

Ellie B, aka Dogamous Pyle, makes herself at home in our living room.

Ellie B, aka Dogamous Pyle, makes herself at home in our living room.

This is our beloved rescue mutt Ellie B, aka Dogamous Pyle.

Isn’t she a beauty?

It is my responsibility to keep her safe and sound, and I take that job seriously.

In the winter, she tends to love sprawling in the living room.

I know, though, that a daily walk is good for both of us. We’re both a couple of pounds heavier than we might like to be, report the doctor and the vet.

My dear wife Karen and I have our code word for the activity. I like to take a W with the D. That’s because when I mention the words walk and dog in the same sentence, Ellie B jumps around like a wild woman.

This is what it looked like yesterday afternoon in Syracuse.

Stormy March 12 in Syracuse, N.Y.

Stormy March 12 in Syracuse, N.Y.

Karen had been sent home from the downtown office of the big daily to complete her tasks on her laptop in the safety of our happy house in the Syracuse city neighborhood of Eastwood.

Feeling satisfied that I no longer need fret about her making that four-or-so mile drive home in the bad weather, I decided to take the D for a W.

I didn’t plan anything drastic, just a happy jaunt through the falling snow to the parking lot adjacent to the park two blocks over.

Ellie B enjoys leading me around the edges of the lot, sniffing and pawing at the snow banks that have built up.

There's nobody playing at Syracuse's Norwood Park on  Thanksgiving morning.

There’s nobody playing at Syracuse’s Norwood Park on Thanksgiving morning.

This is Norwood Park. It’s a multi-purpose place, with two football fields for the Eastwood Bears youth league, and a playground with swings and such for kids.

It’s well posted with signs telling everybody to keep their dog on a leash, and to clean up after them.

Ellie B is always on her blue leash. I always have a couple of supermarket plastic bags in my pocket, in case.

But sometimes Ellie B and I can’t get to the parking lot or the park.

Several times lately, we’ve spotted a red truck in the lot. Yesterday it pulled into the lot as we approached 100 or so yards away. Here’s the routine: The owner does not come out of the cab. He or she sits behind tinted windows, opens the door, and lets a big black dog out loose to run.

When I spot them there, I pull a disappointed Ellie B in the other direction, our paths altered by the dog off the leash. Ellie whimpers. The black dog stands at alert until we’re out of sight.

It may be a friendly dog.

It may not.

I do not plan on finding out by bringing my leashed dog in the vicinity of an unleashed dog. That’s not fair to either of them.

So, I must say, you, owner of the black dog sitting in your red truck, are acting like an an idiot.

The law is not for you, apparently.

I’m sick of you.

The next time, I just might bring my dog home, return with my iPhone, and take a picture of your truck with license plate on full display. Wouldn’t that make great evidence.

Do you think dog owners should let their animals run loose at public parks that are posted with leash laws? Would you bring your leashed dog anywhere near an unleashed dog? Would you confront the owner or just grin and bear it?

62 thoughts on “I’m tired of the red truck and the unleashed black dog

  1. Yes, she is a beauty! I would be very angry too, that just isn’t right. Next time, bring your phone and take a picture. On the other hand, maybe he would be a dog she would enjoy playing with? But I don’t blame you for turning the other way, because you don’t know.


  2. I have 2 small dogs, they are leashed when another dog is present, my hubby makes them sit, stay beside the trail as another dog goes by, its only when the owner is friendly and the dog is friendly we let them introduce.
    I made a huge mistake one day just outside our gate in our alley, a German Sheppard came out of it’s yard and (previously) had played with my Yorkie, my hubby called our dog back but I said it was ok, well what a mistake, before we could call him again the Sheppard’s look on it’s face changed and he had our little guy’s head in his mouth and bit down twice, my hubby started screaming about the same time our Yorkie did, the yelling made the Sheppard let go and our little guy ran to my hubby, the dogs owner came running out and grabbed his dog. Our little guy had a tear on the top of his head, a puncture hole in the top eye lid and cheek, he also had puncture holes on his right side of his neck, My hubby Made the dogs owner come to the vet and pay for the damage. He swore he wouldn’t let his dog out without being on a leash(he has no fence), What ticked me off was the owner blamed his neighbor’s little dogs, because they bark and run up and down the fence line and get his big dog worked up! Not long after this incident I kept seeing this dog running loose, I took pictures and sent them and what happened to the By-Law Officer telling him this was a dangerous dog, the guy was visited but I don’t know what happened. I still see this dog wandering loose. I get it. Get Pictures and look into your towns by-laws! and your right to never trust an unleashed dog! I know I never will !
    Sorry this is so long…..


    • I am sorry your little guy had to suffer injury from this loose shepherd, Ladybuggz. You can never tell how two dogs will react to each other. I will keep my Ellie B safe on her leash by my side and keep away from loose dogs whenever I spot them. Thanks for your comment.


  3. Sweet doggie! You are right to be outraged that’s so irresponsible. A good friend of mine was bit by a dog that was off leash she tripped and fell and bruised/bloodied her face as well. So avoidable! Makes me mad.


    • That is am awful incident for your friend, Sandra. When my daughter was 6 or 7, her grandmother’s neighbors had a dog that bit my poor kid on the butt. Gave her a big bruise, and the neighbors refused to do anything about it saying all the kids were messing around with the dog and it was just harmless playing. My daughter didn’t go over there anymore. It made all of us mad, too.


  4. she is a very pretty girl and i love the code that you and karen have to use when in her presence. eventually she will catch on to that you’ll have to switch to german or something else. as for the truck and the loose dog question, i think it is terrible, and shows a lot of the owner’s character. he is too selfish to get out and walk his dog or to care about how his dog running loose impacts all the other humans and dogs in the area. not the big black dog’s fault he happens to live with a selfish and thoughtless owner. i hope it gets resolved soon.


    • We will see if I encounter these folks again, Beth. I hope when the weather breaks they find a new place to take the black dog.

      I think you are right, Ellie B is smart enough to break the W the D code. Maybe I can learn how to say it in Polish …


      • yeh, she’ll eventually catch on to the pattern. once she hears the code, she goes out for a walk. hmmmm….. polish may work for a while but i fear it will be ever changing in order to stay one step ahead of her )


  5. Funny how the repliers all cite breaking the law. I’d be interested if any of these people break laws like say speeding????? Do they have the same opinion about themselves for breaking laws? Do they think other people may be dog cussing them for rules they have broken/? (Pun intended) At first blush I’d say the red truck guy / girl is inconsiderate; maybe even lazy. Suppose though they have had some accident and their mobility has been compromised??? Or some other unfortunate event and instead of sending their dear dog to the pound to probably get killed they are doing the best they can. Just thinking that those who have never broken any rules / laws should step forward. Probably would be a small crowd.


    • If they are immobilized, they should buy a long leash or run line, clip it on the dog, and then let it out of the truck. And if people drive fast enough to endanger themselves or others, that sucks too. I’ve written about inconsiderate drivers who make it dangerous in another post. Finally, I do not buy into your “everybody else breaks the law so don’t complain” line of thinking. I


  6. E.B./D.P. is such a pretty girl. Give her a good ear scratching and belly rub for me.

    Leashing is important, because dogs can react differently to any given situation, people, and other animals. However, a few years ago, I saw some jerk “walking” his dogs from his car… he was driving while holding the leashes outside the window. Regardless on how slow he was going, that is completely pathetic and cruel.

    However, it does come down to ownership and training. You seem to have a great handle on Ellie.

    I’ve gotten bitten by a dog (while obtaining signatures for the Independence Party — FYI, dogs don’t like politics), which drew a little blood and ruined an expensive pair of pants. Who knows what would have happened if I was walking a dog? It could have been worse, especially for the dog I was taking care of.


    • Dog bites politics petition pusher in the pants and parts, read the headline that day.


      Fair warming that dogs do what they please, and I’m right on this leash issue, Chris.

      The guy walking the dog with a leash on the car is a fool, too. How cruel that is.


  7. Your dog, Ellie B., is adorable! I had a lab/german shepherd mix that looked lanky similar to your dog. She doesn’t look overweight but ours was definitely needing more walks and less scrap foods (from my ex.) I am not too crazy about people who don’t follow leash laws and/or poop scoop laws. I am amazed at the way some people choose to have an animal yet don’t take care of it properly. I would have to report the person after a certain number of times. I am not as patient about this kind of situation, Mark! Smiles, Robin


  8. I canNOT stand when people think a rule or a law doesn’t apply to them. It’s so unnerving to me, especially when it comes to animals because no matter how flipping sweet your dog is with you and your family, no one can predict behavior, which is why they’re supposed to be on a leash at a public park. Get that photo and turn the truck in. Not fair for either dog or you.


  9. As you know, I come from Denmark and have been used to that people either use a leash or keep them free in their own gardens, which is usual there. Of course there are stupid people too.

    Here in Spain where I live now, in a small village, people let their small dogs run free, to shit all over without cleaning after them. I have now a big puppy, he became one year in January, he is a mix of German Shepherd and ??? I keep him in the leash in public places, but it is really difficult, when there are so many free dogs in same time. Sometimes I mind just to release him, so he can protect himself from attacks. When he was a little puppy, the first small dog he did meet, did bite him, so he has respect for free dogs too.

    I’m so really tired of free dogs and their trash. Yesterday our community did send new rules out about having dogs here, but the woman work in the office, doesn’t know anything about those new rules and how to check people are following them. Really not nice.

    You do the only right thing to do about your dog, and sad that she can’t have her walk in the park. Take a photo of both car and dog, post it here, maybe someone know this owner.



  10. People suck. People who don’t keep their dogs on leashes or pick up after them suck the worst. I see it every day here and I’m resentful because Those People never get caught…


  11. I hate people who don’t obey the rules. Our subdivision is surrounded by mobile homes (not that there’s anything wrong with that), but by a strange coincidence, there is a huge percentage of chained pit bulls in their yards, as well as stray dogs with no tags roaming up and down the streets. We don’t ride our bikes or take walks anymore because we have no idea whether they are good dogs or bad dogs. Now I sound like Glenda the Good Witch. It bugs me when people don’t think they need to leash their dogs when others do, or they don’t need to bother cleaning up poop. He’s obviously not a responsible owner, and I just hope he’s not a parent. I would feel so bad if my thoughtlessness was preventing others from enjoying a park. At least he’s not your neighbor.


  12. Hi, Mark!

    I hate that Ellie B’s walks are getting cut short. I’m totally behind your photographic evidence plan! I have three dogs, and one is very leash aggressive. At the dog park, she’s a lover and runs and plays. The second she’s clipped back on a lead, though, she gets nervous and snippy. I’d never take her near an unknown, off-leash dog.


    • The key phrase in your wise response, Jennie, is dog park. That is where an unleashed dog belongs in a community setting. Like your one in three, some dogs display aggressive behavior when leashed. I know Ellie B is better when every dog is loose, on even terms, than when one is free and the other is tethered. I may have to snap that picture. Thanks for pitching in here!


  13. I would take that photo. Our local park is full of dog walkers, most are responsible but it only takes one to ruin it for everyone else. Makes me cross.


  14. We typically get 3-5 feet of snow every winter. But this year we’ve received none. Not sure what summer holds for us but it’s not looking good.


      • It sure is! It’s rather freaky although I have enjoyed not driving around in ice and snow. We’ve had beautiful sunny warm weather, which is so not typical for here.


      • I got to spend a week at a convention in Portland a couple of decades ago. We went to the Rose Garden, with the lovely view of the city rolling from it. It was 95 degrees. Then we were taken by bus to a lodge on Mount Hood, where it was snowing and 20 degrees. Freaky.


      • I love Portland! Hubby and I take the train there for long weekend getaways. The Rose Garden is one of my fav places to visit. Mount Hood is pretty awesome too. Oregon is known for freaky weather lol


  15. Take the photo Mark. One of the truck and one of the dog on the loose. There are leash laws in every city and town and it only takes one person letting their dog run loose to make things bad for all the rest. And who cleans up after the black mutt? The tax payer’s.
    Make friends with a cop, if you don’t already have one, because then you will have someone to be a W with the D buddy some morning. And give Ellie B. a one armed (right one pls) hug for me. It’s just so bad she can’t walk in the park because of one person who chooses to break the law.


      • I would say that the Red Truck man is just lazy and inconsiderate.
        That’s what gets me the most. People know the rules, and most rules have a good reason to be a rule.
        Inconsiderate people are very irksome to me also. If i have to play by the rules, they should be.
        Take solace in the fact that you are a considerate person, and don’t let the rudeness of people distract from your W with the D….


  16. I’m with you 100 percent! My dog was attacked while walking him a couple years ago. I’m fearful of any unleashed dog. Hugs and sloppy kisses to Ellie B. from Diesel.


  17. I think you made the right decision – especially for Ellie B. She is lucky to be part of such a loving, caring and responsible family. It’s unfortunate and disrespectful that others do not take the same responsibility and violate everyone else’s rights by doing so.


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