My Mother had this expression she always used to say to us. “Don’t assume, it makes an ass out of u and me.” I find when I am out walking with the my four legged companions certain assumptions are made by people with dogs and those individuals out walking without a furry companion. First assumption, smalls dogs are harmless. Second assumption, big dogs are scary and aggressive. I know a cute little canine friend who looks sweet as pie, but lord help you if a stranger or another dog gets too close, she turns into a ninja warrior and in a blink of an eye, things go south. I have ended up covered in scratches and bitten because someone decided that just because she weighs 10 pounds wet, she is harmless. Then there is some of the big dogs in the area that I encounter, people shy away from them because they may look like one of those threatening breeds, and yet they are wrong, those dogs are gentle giants. I think when you are out walking with your dog you need to read the person walking’s body language, are they holding their dog close or moved off to the side, this is a way of saying, my dog needs space and perhaps doesn’t do so well greeting others. It is a constant source of irritation for me when I encounter people that have those charming retractable leashes, that behoove their users (they retract) and allow their canine friend to run willy nilly into yours and the next thing you know you feel like a head of cattle bound at round up and you are trying to balance precariously with two animals flailing about your feet. The other thing that drives me right round the bend, you can have the NICEST dog on the planet, but that doesn’t mean you can walk up to any dog, if you notice a person trying to move out of your trajectory with their pet, then allow them the space to do so. Over and over I have been told, “So in so is friendly.” And low and behold, the teeth are gnashing together and things aren’t as amicable as they thought it would be. And then they announce that “So in so never does that.” Don’t assume… I might sound cranky, I don’t mean to, I just merely would like to suggest, if you encounter other dog walkers while you are out with your pet, allow them space and don’t be offended if they don’t want to have your animals interact with each other.