While it’s not necessarily true that barking dogs never bite, I have learned that you may befriend barking dogs that also bite. When I run, I usually run past a house with a dog tied by a long rope to a tree. There is no fence around the property, so the rope leash is my only protection against a barking dog that I’m fairly sure will bite if given the opportunity.
I constantly worry that this dog will break his leash as runs barking toward me whenever I run past it. Whenever I run past this barking dog that charges at me, I say, “Nice doggie! How are you doing?” This may seem silly, but what other choice do I have. My logic is that if one day the dog breaks loose, I will be able to pet it and it won’t bite me. At least, that’s what I hope.
Well, the other day, I ran past the house and the dog was fetching a ball that its owner threw. When the dog saw me, he immediately changed course and charged at me while I ran past the house, saying, “Good doggie! Good doggie!” The dog barked viciously at me as it ran at me, but its tail was wagging. I didn’t know which end to believe. I stopped, faced the dog, and put my hand out to pet the dog. Of course, I was ready to pull my hand back in case it tried to bite me. I said, “Good doggie!” and petted the dog playfully. The owner called the dog back, but when I started running again, the dog followed me. I think he liked me.
I’m glad I thought of talking to the dog every time I ran past. Now, the dog still barks at me, but he no longer charges at me. And, I’m no longer worried that it will bite me!