My worst nightmare played out at the Quarry Run Dog Park yesterday afternoon. As Lou Lou and Eloise rounded the corner at their favorite play place and stopped for a quick bathroom break, two larger dogs bounded down the hill with their owner a few steps behind. The four dogs were all excited to be at their favorite place.

While one of the other dogs went about normal dog greetings and butt sniffs with Eloise, the second dog suddenly darted between the legs of the larger dog and lunged at Lou Lou. Everything happened pretty quickly but I'll never get the image of that dog pinning Lou Lou down with its mouth and sinking its teeth into her tiny chest and shaking with all its might.

It ended as quickly as it started, but the damage was severe. Lou Lou has two puncture wounds on her chest and lots of swelling, bruising, and scratches covering her chest, abdomen, and legs. The emergency vet clinic in Westbrook got us in immediately and tended to her wounds. Lou Lou will be on pain killers and antibiotics for a week as we monitor for infections and excessive swelling. Stitches or staples were not at option for Lou, as these types of wounds can get worse when closed.

Through this nightmare experience, all I wanted was for Lou Lou to be okay. The other owner was so kind and gave me her contact info so we could exchange vaccination records and updates. Although this attack could be characterized as aggression and the dog could be labeled as dangerous, that is the last thing I want. I'm not mad at anyone or any dog.

As a dog owner, you know that a situation like this could happen to anyone. The sweetest of dogs in a high-stress situation can turn vicious. My two-dog pack met another two-dog pack, and something switched in their dynamic that lead the dog to attack my Lou. I don't want the other dog punished or taken away, and I definitely don't wish the worst for that dog. The experience was eye opening for me, and likely for the other owner as well. My only hope is that the other owner will be more vigilant and aware in similar situations down the road. I know that I will be more cautious at our next run around the dog park.

A dog fight or attack is never a good situation for anyone involved. There's no need to add stress or heartache to an already difficult situation by berating the other owner or by threatening action against the other dog. I just want all the puppies to be happy, loved, healthy, and safe. 

As for now, Lou is getting extra cuddles and treats. Her ears still perk up and she does the famous head tilt when I mention the dog park. We'll get back there soon.