or rather vow vow, which is what the German kids seem to think dogs 'say'. Now Logan almost never barks but when he does it's always a knee trembling 'WOOF' that seems to come all the way up from the his toes, never a pathetic 'vow vow'.
The English are re-known almost as much for their love of dogs as they are for the love of warm beer and custard (but never at the same time, that would just be wrong) but since moving here I've come to the conclusion that there are more dog owners in Germany than there are in Britain. But German dog owners (and the dogs too for that matter) are a very different breed (!) to the British.
- they almost all seem to use expanding leads, so the dog is free to meander at will, tripping up unsuspecting passersby.
- often there's no lead at all, the owners seeming to trust that their dog will remain on the footpath and not dart into the path of an oncoming car/bike/truck no matter the temptation. Now Logan is a reasonably well behaved hound but if he saw a cat or a squirrel...even on a lead he'd want to give chase, which is why I am reluctant to let small (and therefore lightweight) children walk him.
- there are no dog poo fines, owners are happy to let their dogs poo wherever and whenever they get the urge, which as a dog owner who does scoop the poop, is very irritating to have to regularly scoop other hounds' poop from outside my house, grrrrrrr, and we live on a busy (with small children walking) school route, not nice.
- you know how people joke about the punctuality of Germans? This extends to dog walking too. Logan thinks himself lucky if he gets his walk before lunchtime, to be honest any later than noon and he lets me know about it, you wont find a closer, stickier shadow. But you can set your clock by German dogs (and their owners clearly) They go out at the same times every day, usually meeting up with the same people and even walking the same circuits, dull dull dull.
- German dogs are very barky, especially the littler ones (Napolean complex definitely) you only have to walk past or be about to walk past and they start, this goes hand in hand with
- snappy, they have seriously bad attitude towards most of humanity but especially other dogs. Logan can spot a grumpy hound from several metres and will take evasive action, choosing to walk in the road or detouring casually through the bushes, rejoining me only when the nasty snappy, barky creature is safely behind us. This morning we met a dog that only hates other dogs when it's on its lead (personally I think it needs psychiatric help, either that or a kick up the ass) it saw us approaching and set off. The problem today was the snow, lots of it, making the paths and roads quite dangerous and the owner was on a bike...eventually he got off the bike to control the dog (it's labrador size, so quite capable of pulling its owner off the bike) a good job really seeing as Logan was trying to get as far away from this beast as possible which entailed trying to pull me into the road.
- In the UK it's quite common to have your dog castrated if you're not intending to show/breed it. Doesn't seem to happen here, which is maybe why the dogs are so snappy and barky...and also why some of them will try to hump anything - small children, castrated English dogs, literally anything.
- Sometimes when I've been walking in the woods I've come across what looks like the scene of a terrible accident, lots of fur lying on the ground, but no blood and no corpse, odd. Then one day I stumbled across a woman brushing her dog, on the path, in the woods, weird.
And of course there are the people who refuse to believe that your dog is the breed you say it is, although maybe this happens everywhere and not just here, Logan is apparently the wrong colour to be a golden retriever (he's very golden, not one of these wishy washy white retrievers) he's also way too big apparently (he's not fat, he's fluffy, honest).
OK, dog induced rant over.