Thursday, October 11, 2007

Close call

I'm still kind of getting over what did and what almost happened today. Several things about the whole drawn out incident still bother me for various reasons.

I went and mowed all day at the cemetery today. The cemetery is on the edge of town, which is to say it is on the road out of town. On both sides of it are pasture with trees, one side having a creek. To the rear of the property is hundreds of acres of cow pasture/creek bottom. The property is about 15 acres.

About 4:00pm today, I am finishing up the last section and I see movement at the back of the cemetery. I look and see 2 dogs, about medium size, come from the side. They enter the cemetery and at first I cant understand what they are doing. It didn't look right. Then I realized why, they were hunting. Heads down but looking around, ears up, steady walk.

I watched from about 100 yards. They looked, and acted like wild animals. I turned the mower toward them and moved forward a few yards. Both heads came up to look at me. I continued to watch as they made their way around the back of the cemetery, as far from me as they could. I lost sight of them as they went into the creek, so I resumed mowing.

A few minutes later, I noticed movement toward the front of the cemetery. It was the dogs. I watched as they walked through and caught (or tried to) bugs or something on the ground. Their direction of travel was taking them across the front of the property, but back in the general direction they had originally appeared from. I watched as they walked to the fence line, and turned in my direction. At this point they were about 75 yards from me and getting closer.

I started to drive the mower toward my truck, but they were closer to it than I was. They made it there before me, and were now between me and my vehicle. They noticed me and stopped to look. They were about 50 yards from me and I could see them much better than I wanted to.

The largest was at least part pit bull, he had the head of a pit bull. He was skinny, and looked underfed. The second was a mix, with no real discernible breed characteristics. They found the remains of my lunch on the ground and ate. As I started to move the mower toward them, the largest turned to face me, lowered his head and I watched as his ears laid back. I stopped, and slowly backed the mower up a few yards. He stood still and watched me.

Now, I'm no dog expert, but I call that a very aggressive display on his part. I may be wrong, and I invite comment on it, but I had decided a few things at this point; These were wild dogs, or maybe feral is a better word. Also, while they stayed away from me at first, they were not afraid of me. Another thing I had decided was that the largest at least was aggressive, and aggressive away from his "turf" at that.

My wife has actually kidded me about carrying a gun while I mow. She wondered if I thought zombies might try to get me.

I carry anyway. As I sat there on a zero turn mower with a pair of aggressive dogs between me and my vehicle, my hand around the grip of my holstered Glock 26, I had several thoughts about carrying.

One of the first thoughts was "why the hell is my phone in the truck and not in my pocket?"

I didn't have a safe shot, so I waited. The dogs moved around and I eased toward my truck. I kept thinking about my pistol:
Why did I only have a 9mm? A .45 would be better, hell at that point a .50 AE or even a .500 mag sounded good. And for that matter, I was really wishing I had my 870.

The dogs rambled off, and I didn't see them again.

I will be watching though. My house is only about a 1/4 mile away as the crow flies.

Mr Fixit


Who is..... Carteach0? said...

A 'neighbor' who is not a neighbor has a pair of large white dogs. They leave them to roam sometimes, and they 'patrol' as dogs do.

Problem is, they are aggressive and fearless. They have appeared on our next door neighbors back porch, growling through the screen door at her. THAT aggressive.

The 'neighbors' with the dogs don't seem to care.

A few months ago I was in the field behind my house (hunting woodchucks for the farm owner) when those dogs started heading my way. Their intent was clear. Their owner saw this, from several hundred yards away, and did nothing.

I put a round in the chamber of the rifle, stood in profile, and waited. Their owner saw this too, and NOW had an interest. All of a sudden she thought it a good idea to call her dogs home.

Good thing.... there were two dogs and I only had three rounds left.
I've seen what a .17 can do to a dog.... and it's ugly. Two hits would have sufficed.

Now, the dogs are kept closer to home and the real neighbors breath easier.

You have to do what you have to do. We are armed because it's our duty and obligation to look after our own security, and that of our loved ones.

Feral dogs come with both four and two legs.

Gabby said...

My Dad and his dear wife live on 25 acres south of Jasper, TX. One of his neighbors who lives across the highway a good half mile away had three big dogs that ran loose--turning over and scattering garbage, growling/barking at Dad's wife and anyone else that was in their way during their morning/evening patrols across Dad's place.

During a visit a couple of years ago, I picked the biggest one off at about 75 yards out behind their house with a Remington 22 auto loader--long rifle hollow points. One round thru the engine room and the dog made it about 20 yards. Got out the Polaris with the dump bed and had the critter buried in the sandy loam before breakfast.

That neighbor doesn't let his other two mongrels run loose any more after that one didn't come home.

My Dad's wife is much more comfortable walking about with grandmuchkins out behind her own house.

Folks need to manage their critters, or have them managed by someone else.

Billy Sparks said...

I am sure AD could probably talk better about this than me. Dogs are interesting critters, everyone thinks of the faithful family pet or the cute puppy and forget that the dog is not that far removed from being a very good predator especially in a pack. In the very rural areas of my county we have a probelm with people just dumping unwanted dogs, they start pakcing together and then you have to watch it.

By the way I always carry when I mow or work outside also. My wife never asks why.