I love our dog, Hugo. He even blogs occasionally. But he is not smart. He is also incredibly fast.
We were coming home from swimming lessons, heading to the dinner, bath, bed portion of the day. Baby E had refused his midday nap and was nodding off in his car-set (just what every mother wants at 5pm). I hadn’t yet closed the gate and Master I had let the dog in. Hugo doesn’t miss opportunities like this. He was outta there.
Fast dog + no brains + road = flat dog. I was in no state to explain a flat dog to any one of the men in my life.
I had to make the split second decision to leave baby E napping with the car door open as I gave chase to the dog, with Master I in tow. I was chasing a dog with no road sense, followed by a six year old boy with only marginally more.
The trick with Hugo is that you cannot chase him – if you do he just goes faster and he is completely uncatchable. You sort of have to saunter after him looking quite nonchalant about the whole thing. “Oh no, I am not trying to catch you – I am just going on a little walk, but if you would come over here, that would be quite helpful.” Master I doesn’t get this. He runs after his dog full pelt.
We live in a lovely street where we know lots of neighbours by name and pretty much everyone else by sight. Having a lunatic escapee dog means you get to know the people who live around you. One by one, they joined in the chase. They also weren’t playing the nonchalant sauntering game and instead Hugo was leading a line of people running a dog-chase. We were starting to look like a Pamella Allen picture book.
Our street is fairly quiet but it does lead up to a main road. It’s the main road that gives me heart palpitations and of course that’s where Hugo was heading. At peak hour.
I demonstrated superior road safety skills to Master I by running into the middle of the busy street and waving my hands like a crazy person in a desperate attempt to stop traffic. Hugo thought it was the most fun he had in a long time.
After a few screeching tyres, a heart that had relocated itself in my throat, and the help of my kindly neighbours we eventually cornered Hugo and shepherded him back home.
Thankfully, Baby E was sound asleep. Oblivious to all the excitement. But getting ready for a 3am start thanks to his way-too-early bed-time.
Note: This whole situation repeated itself last Friday. Flowers were delivered, as I was stepping out of the shower. The gate was left open. The obliging six year old opened the door. The opportunistic dog was off again. The delivery man was left, somewhat bewildered, holding a dozen roses and wondering what do with two young boys as their frantic mother ran down the street in a state of half-dress and full-panic. Sign going on the gate pronto!