“Try leaving the garden for a moment so that she gets the chance to get back inside” I said to my man when nothing else seemed to work. He did just that, but the dog still didn’t move an inch. My man opened the door to get back inside and that was the moment when the dog saw her chance and slipped away.
It was the first time for us looking after this very anxious, bity dog now that my mother couldn’t do it herself due to an appointment. We knew the dog had issues, but I never foresaw that we – us who NEVER leave mum’s house during the day, hardly dressed – would spend some time lurking nearby the stores whilst it was very busy….
My man literally said “Oh fuck, no! No!” and proceeded to follow the dog whom we had never seen running this fast. She immediately approached a road where -of course- there happened to drive a car. Luckily the car went by faster and sooner than the dog reached the road and she managed to cross the road safely.
My man continued following her and I ran into the garden to chase after them as well. After I had only ran to the end of my street, I felt like my legs were made of jelly and as if I hadn’t been eating for days. I’d also just realized there were so many people outside and I simply felt like I couldn’t continue. I starteled. I returned home and had to decide in a split of a second what to do next. I saw my little Fannar sitting there in the door to the garden, patiently waiting. I realised just then that I’d never ever left him alone before, but this somehow didn’t stop me from doing the very same thing again real soon. I grabbed my shoes and gloves, since running in flip-flops isn’t recommended when you’re in a proper hurry. This time I left through the front door, so that I took less time to get back and to make sure my fur baby was safe inside.
Mind you, normally when we walk during the NIGHT we wear clothes with long sleeves, our hair in a bun, a hat to cover our hair and a face mask just-in-case. I was now only wearing a long t shirt and my hair wasnt only uncovered – it was as loose as possible. I realised this when I ran into as many people in about 50 meters that I would normally walk into during a 10k walk – during the night. Smelling so many different kinds of perfumes, crèmes, detergents and body odours was something I hadn’t experienced for a loooong time.
After running twice the distant of the very first time, I saw my man chasing the dog back towards mum’s house. However, the dog didn’t want to go past me, so she ran into the park on the other side of the road. I kept on following her, running past MANY confusing people. I noticed the dog would only go where she recognizes the places so I knew her next move. She was heading for my mum’s boyfriend’s house.
Running is something I enjoy doing from time to time and I’m not unfit, but today it felt like I had spent a year or so in a bed, eating nothing, just existing like a fucking plant, because I couldn’t keep up with this small dog. At all. When the dog was at my mum’s boyfriend, I was still in the park and had lost her out of my sight completely. On the crossroad I looked into every direction and then finally spotted her where I had already expected her to be, but you know, you can never know for sure. I ran up to her, believing she would somehow now wait in front of the door that leads to my mum’s boyfriend. I was wrong.
The dog continued running towards the most busy place in my district, the centre where all the grocery stores are. At that time all I could think of was a disappointing mother, a devastating owner of that dog and the dog getting run over by all those cars that were swarming the streets like fucking ants.
The dog managed to run on a playground. A group of children walked there. I signed them to catch the dog, I don’t think they understood my language. The dog was too quickly when they attempted catching her, but she ran back in my direction. She growled and showed her teeth when she got nearby me and ran past me. I started talking out loud that it just was too much – being outside unprotected, running that much all of a sudden, smelling and hearing and seeing so much, having pains in my stomach and not knowing where my man was… I shouted to everyone I past to stop the dog and a man even put his bag down and attempted catching her. A taxi driver even started following her slowly in his car. She ran back to the park and I was SO relieved I saw my man. At this point my lungs were filled with everything but proper air from shouting and running. I could really use a break, but I continued following my man who chased the dog. He noticed something I had noticed as well: the dog was about to have a heat stroke. She kept on having small breaks in shades, panting her flat Shih Zu face off. She is never being walked by her owners and isn’t used to seeing anyone or anything…
My man decided to approach the dog differently this time. He would just wait instead of following her. Whilst he was doing just that, I was still in the beginning of that same street and I almost walked someone off his bike. It was my mum’s boyfriend!!! Someone that the dog had just began trusting not too long ago!! I told him to go to my man as fast as possible, which he did. He got on his knees and the dog ran into him. Mum’s boyfriend grabbed her firmly, which she didn’t like at all. I would then try to get the dog from mum’s boyfriend, but the dog started growling and biting again. We decided I would take the bike of mum’s boyfriend and he would carry the dog back home.
Weird thing is it seemed that my mum’s boyfriend NEVER cycles the way he did. He had just gotten back from a store which he hadn’t planned on going to either. What a rotten bit of luck!
On the way back home I bumped into many more people, one of whom smoked terribly close to me. I had asked my man to run back as soon as I realised our Fannar was still alone in a house that wasn’t locked.
All was well.
And guess what: this was only 2.3km in only 14 minutes time. It seemed like an eternity.. Seeing and smelling 50+ humans in such a short time over such a small distance made it seem like I had been outside for hours…
It’s been a day since and I’ve decided to write it down for you all, not because of the dog that escaped, but because I wanted to share what it’s like for someone like us to going onto the streets like we had to after not doing that for almost a year. At that very moment I mostly thought about retrieving the dog – I noticed smells and many people, but they didn’t really scare me, only my aches and the fact that I lost my man bothered me. After returning home and cleaning ourselves, though, it hit us and especially me. I thought back at what had happened, but this time I knew the dog was safe, so I had time to really feel what I felt.
Looking back at the situation as a third person, looking from a safe distance, it would seem like I had just escaped a mental hospital or prison, arriving into a world after many years that had continued on evolving and changing whilst I was locked up. I didn’t know how to dress, I didn’t know how to communicate anymore and it would feel like those people were from another planet. My hair and beard were long. I hadn’t showered for AGES and I wasn’t wearing much. The fact that I couldn’t speak whole lines could have been because of the escaped dog, but still, I’ve never seen or heard about anyone acting like THIS when a dog had escaped…