I didn't want to threadjack lustdrunkwitch's excellent post about not leaving your dogs in the car (the Fusspot was left in the car exactly once, for maybe 30 minutes, when he was about 9 months of age and it was December and he had a blanket and I sat by a window so I could see what was going on in the car - he just slept) but I am here to say, PLEASE PEOPLE LEASH YOUR DOGS. Because I just grabbed a little dog I know out of a live lane of traffic and, although he is OK, his grandma is traumatized and I am dealing by just drinking a great deal of wine and shaking, even though everything is OK and I should be too.
Little delinquent dog belongs to the daughter of one of my neighbours, a neighbour of whom I am very fond. The daughter dropped delinquent dog off at grandma's to dogsit, but forgot to bring his collar and leash. (Insert lifted eyebrow here.) Delinquent dog's grandma is devoted to him but she is a senior in questionable health and a trip to a place to buy a new collar and leash, though planned, would take a lot out of her. And, to give him some credit, I have known delinquent dog since he was about 8 or 10 weeks old and he is smart and generally obedient - certainly I've never known him to wander before.
But a dog has to go when a dog has to go, so when his grandma took him out for a pee stop, she stayed with him on the property but he saw a bus pull over on the other side of the road ... and whether he thought it was his mom getting off the bus (it was her usual route) or he saw me and recognized me, I do not know, but he wiggled away from grandma and trotted out into the street to meet the bus. Cue honks and a few shrieks, including mine. I yelled his name and he came right to me, and I picked him up (keeping a good grip on him). His grandma was on the other side of the street looking like she was about to have a heart attack. I got across the street, still clutching the dog, and steered her inside our building (my friend Sherry was behind me holding my bag, which I had completely forgotten about because all I could think of was SAVE DOG SAVE DOG). I got delinquent dog and grandma settled in the lobby and then I went upstairs to fetch Fusspot's old leash, collar and harness, which I brought down and fitted to delinquent dog (who was totally chill and pleased to be the centre of attention, the little bastard). I told grandma not to let her daughter go off with these, that she needs them to stay at her place in case daughter forgets again. And then I went upstairs, poured a glass of wine, and hugged the Fusspot until he complained.
If anything had happened to that little delinquent dog I don't know what I would have done. He is adorable (and a friend of Fusspot's) and his grandma is one of my favourite people. I had been worried earlier in the week, when I'd seen her out with him, no leash in sight, but they weren't far from home and she had a bag of treats with her that she claimed he would follow anywhere. But it doesn't matter what you have, THEY ARE DOGS AND THEY CAN BE STUPID. (I know I've posted before about a little dog who lived in my building, who ran out in the street and was killed - this was a few years ago and I was there about thirty seconds after it happened and it was so awful, I know it sounds ridiculous but I'm still not over it. It was so avoidable. If he'd been leashed he'd be alive now.)
Anyway, theoretically EVERYTHING IS FINE. Little delinquent dog is fine. The people who adore him (three family generations, not counting his many friends and admirers, like me) will be fine knowing that he is fine. Nobody was hit by a car and there is wine in my fridge. And I will shortly take Fusspot out for a walk. He will wear his harness. And a leash.