Leash em up, please

Milo, along with her litter-mates, was left abandoned by the side of the highway. She really hasn’t recovered from that experience.

I love my dog.

Milo is a border collie x chocolate lab kind of dog. At least that was the veterinarian’s best guess when she was just a couple of weeks old, almost six years ago now.

Those of you who’ve met Milo know she has to be the most gorgeous dog there ever was, her colours and her eyes will suck in even the toughest of characters.

Sometimes I swear she knows she’s gorgeous and gives me the puppy-dog look with those brown eyes of hers.

But Milo has problems.

She, along with her litter-mates, was left abandoned by the side of the highway.

She really hasn’t recovered from that experience. She’s afraid of everything.

Sandwich boards on the sidewalk, especially with balloons, outdoor air conditioners, cars and trucks.

If someone drops their keys, sneezes or closes their car door too loudly while we’re on a walk, she’ll flinch and try to run and hide.

Unfortunately, Milo has also yet to meet a dog she liked.

Before I took her in about two years ago, she spent much of her time in a house or in the backyard, little opportunity to socialize with humans or other dogs.

She’s getting better, but she is by no means there yet.

The biggest problem is going for a walk with Milo.

I have to be vigilant for other dogs, especially dogs that are not on leash.

Dogs being dogs, when they see another they want to investigate.

Milo, who is on a leash, doesn’t take well to other dogs trying to sniff her and typically tries to take a nip out of them.

I do my best to avoid dogs that are off leash.

I’ve crossed the street or turned back to avoid dogs off leash, not always successfully.

But why should I?

Smithers has a bylaw stipulating, dogs must be leashed when in public and owners must maintain control of the dog at all times.

Same goes for provincial parks, even the dog-friendly parks.

Give us a break, leash up your dog so the rest of us can walk in peace.

– Milo and Percy N. Hébert/Interior News