I’ve written before about my neighbor and his dog. Whenever I was taking out my garbage or going to the mailbox, there was a good chance the large white shepherd would coming bounding towards me, barking her head off, while my neighbor yelled in heavily-accented English, “Bella is friendly! Bella is friendly!”
And Bella was friendly, but there was no way of knowing that until she DIDN’T knock you over and start eating your face.
But my neighbor moved, and Bella is now somewhere else, scaring small children and timid neighbors.
A new couple has moved in, and they have three dogs, three very small dogs that a friend of mine always called “rat dogs.” I’m not sure what breed they are. They are cute and they also run towards me on my way to the mailbox. But they are not friendly. They bare their teeth, and they growl. They even do some circling like they’re a pack of mini-wolves.
Of course, the fear factor is much less on my part. Let’s face it; only my ankles are at risk. And if I’m in a particularly bad move, one small rush towards them on my part sends them scrambling back a safe distance to continue their growling.
But it’s a good reminder that the old saying is true: Appearances ARE deceiving. And it makes sense for us to take the time to investigate before we judge.