2023.34 : American Dog

Folsom, California U.S.A. Circa 2021

Attention Dogs: Please stay to the left of your human, with your leash on at all times.

— City of Folsom

Three hours after the publication of “2023.31 : Ljungaviken, Sweden,” I phoned a friend to say hi, only to hear him breathing heavily. The cause of his breathlessness? He was in the midst of erecting a new fence. That very morning, a neighborhood dog breached my friend’s chicken coop, leading to the unfortunate demise of three chickens. The dog was locked in combat with the rooster, which was halted by my friend, who intervened and managed to drive the dog away.

That same morning, the very same dog harassed other residents in the vicinity, all of whom resided over a mile away from the dog’s own abode. Fortunately, the canine menace was apprehended and delivered to the pound. This incident wasn’t the dog’s first crime spree, nor was it its first visit to the pound.

Most of us recognize, dogs often mirror their humans. This human, however, warrants closer inspection.

Redneck? Nope.
Trailer park? Once again, nope.
Dog fighter? Once more, nope.

This human is considered a pillar of the community – you know the type:

The possessor of a lucrative medical establishment
(known for its penchant to up-sell vulnerable patients)

An esteemed member of the Chamber of Commerce
(utilizing its resources to suppress competition)

Actively participating in the school board
(despite amassing citations from law enforcement concerning his hazardous dog, among other things)

A proud member of his congregation
(forgetting, perhaps, to query himself, ‘What would Jesus do?’)

Upon my friend’s call, recounting the havoc wreaked by his dog, this model citizen couldn’t muster up an apology or offer compensation. Furthermore, no measures were undertaken to avert a recurrence. Instead, he displayed indignation at the prospect of his Sunday breakfast being disrupted.

It’s the human who is the American Dog— who needs to be put on a leash.

And now … know the photograph.

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