Some loyal readers have asked how Beau, our Yellow Labrador Retriever, is doing. I have some news to report.
Beau, who has extraordinary self-esteem, and consequently expects that everyone, all creatures great and small, will like him, discovered, sadly, that is not true. It was not true when he met a Mastiff at a campground last week.
As Miss Sugar told the story to me, the Mastiff, apparently irritated by Beau’s exuberant attitude, barked at him. Beau, delighted to have his presence acknowledged by another dog, pulled on the cable to which he was tied so hard that it broke. Beau happily ran to the campsite across the road, dragging the cable, expecting to play.
When Beau arrived, the Mastiff, whom we shall call Cujo, knocked Beau onto his back and went for Beau’s jugular.
Miss Sugar and Cujo’s owner watched in horror. Beau realized that Cujo was not playing nicely and managed to bite Cujo’s face. That move allowed Beau to get up and try to leave the adversarial situation. Unfortunately, Cujo was not finished. He bit Beau’s left hind leg. He bit all the way through the leg.
Miss Sugar called for Beau to retreat. He did. It is rare for Beau to come when called.
Cujo’s owner owner was embarrassed. She stated the obvious, “He does not get along with other animals. That is why we take him out for walks at 4:00 a.m.” It seems the dog has a history. Beau was not Cujo’s first victim.
She kindly offered to help with Beau’s anticipated vet bills. Then she added. “Our dog’s face is bleeding.”
Sugar did not offer any sympathy.
Sugar did take Beau to a vet she found in the area. (I was not there to help. I was at work, scheduled to join the family later.) The vet treated the puncture wounds from the bite and prescribed antibiotics. She said Beau might need a shunt to drain infection if that sets in. He had to wear a cone to keep him from licking his leg.
When I arrived at the campsite, Beau was not the happy camper I am used to seeing. He was depressed. He was in pain. He did not want to walk on his swollen limb. He hated wearing the cone. We were sad to see Beau so very sad. I think part of his depression came from the realization that Cujo did not like him. That fact did not Beau’s worldview that everyone likes him. He seemed to be suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.