A nasty surprise in the alley

Opinion: Letters To The Editor

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A couple of weeks ago, I was going out to my garage-parked car with my briefcase, a cup of coffee and our American foxhound mix Lucy, who was on a leash. I bring her to my daughter's house most mornings where she gets to play with her dog.

As is my normal routine, prior to putting her in the car, I opened the garage door leading to our alley and before I knew what had happened my dog bolted out of my grasp and was in an all-out fight with a pit bull who was also leashed and walking with its owner down our alley. I found out that the dog's owner is not a resident of our immediate neighborhood.

Before I knew it, I had dropped everything I had and found my adrenaline-charged self prying my dog out of the jaws of the pit bull. The short version of the story is that my dog survived, but not without a trip to the vet, numerous scratches and lots of pain. With the help of her loving family and some antibiotics she will be fine. The incident was disturbing in many ways, most of which became clear to me after it was over.

My dog does not have an aggressive personality. However, like most dogs, she will go into protective mode if threatened and a growling pit bull a couple of feet from the apron of our garage constituted a major threat to her and me. She reacted as most dogs would, probably even protecting me over her, and I feel very lucky that neither one of us were hurt more seriously.

In hindsight it would be easy to say I reacted foolishly, but I am sure I acted like many of us would. I was so startled that when adrenaline took over I pulled my dog away with my hands inches from the pit bull's mouth. The reaction of the owner of the other dog was to shriek at the top of her lungs.

I feel strongly that the woman walking this dog had no business in our alley. Use the sidewalk. If you have a dog that is potentially dangerous, put a muzzle on it. Alleys are an extension of our yards. There are no sidewalks there. Respect the fact that we, as homeowners, should be entitled to a bit of privacy. I don't want to have to worry every time I open my garage door that I have to brace myself for the "surprise" that might be out there. I don't want anyone in our alley for any reason unless they belong there. Especially someone with a potentially dangerous dog. I don't linger in your alley ... please don't linger in mine.

Eric Priceman

Oak Park

Reader Comments

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joe from south oak park  

Posted: March 31st, 2014 10:25 PM

nick- Why bring back a 2 month old dead post?

nick from Chicago  

Posted: March 31st, 2014 6:51 PM

You need to train and control your dog properly before you point at a breed you know absolutely nothing about. Your dog went after another dog and got his ass kicked and it is the other dogs fault? I forget did you say the leash slipped out of your hand? That poor person was having a nice morning walk till your dog bolted out and attacked them. I think you are definitely in the wrong. You made a foolish post that is showing your own lack of accountability as a dog owner.

Common Sense from Chicago  

Posted: January 23rd, 2013 9:00 AM

Yes your dog was on a leash. However, it "bolted out of your grasp." So did you or did you not have control of your dog? Put your dog in your car before opening your garage door and you wouldn't have this problem. common sense much?

Monica Kowalski from Joliet  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 7:48 PM

This is exactly the stuff promoting hatred and prejudice against pitbulls. They are the most loyal, loving creatures. Also the most misunderstood, abused,tortured,neglected and killed...SHAME ON YOU. Educate yourself,hopefully this is the last ignorant article of yours.

Tiffany from MN  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 5:22 PM

You meant this as a warning? Yes, people walking on public property should be wary, apparently irresponsible people like Eric here can't hang onto their dogs. You say you are worried about what could have happened if it was a child? That could have been a real problem if your dog had decided to take after a kid to "protect" you instead of the leashed dog it attacked. It's clear who the danger is in your alleys and I hope you were fined accordingly.

Mari from DeKalb  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 4:41 PM

Here is a FACT: "The American Temperament Test Society determined that pit bulls were less aggressive in confrontational situations than many stereotypically friendly breeds, scoring 86% in overall ability to interact appropriately in public ?" versus the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel (83%), the Miniature Poodle (78%) and the Old English Sheepdog (77%)."

Mari from DeKalb  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 4:36 PM

I can understand the concern you may feel about the alley. As a kid I used to play in the backyard leading to an alley. But understand that your dog was at fault and the outrage comes from the fact that you used the term "pit bull". What does the breed have to do with what your dog did? Next time you set out to warn anyone of the "dangers" proof your "letter" and don't add the the already out of control paranoia. Besides, no one had a problem with them in the WWII. Look it up. Sgt. Stubby.

Rose  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 4:14 PM

You are ridiculous. They have no right to be in that alley? Seriously? They have every right to be in that alley. Your dog caused the fight, not the pitbull, which you even say, was leashed. It's YOUR fault. You didn't control your dog.

Nicole' from Milwaukee  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 3:50 PM

Are you kidding Eric? As what most have said here you were at fault. You were walking your dog and they were walking theirs and you didn't have control.

Lee Strausberg from Chicago  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 3:39 PM

Yes. The person with the out of control dog should be disciplined. That's you. You're an embarrassment to responsible dog owners. Take a class and stop trying to whine your way into our hearts it doesn't work.

Cortney from Chicago  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 3:36 PM

Nothing really new to add, just wanted to reiterate that the author, Eric, really seems to have a false sense of entitlement. Blaming a leashed dog for being attacked by your dog? What a dummy. Rather than fearing other dogs, or as it seems here, blatantly blaming the pit despite its innocence, Eric should work on protecting others from his dog. On a side note, really, your dog had some scratches? Wow, that pit sounds aggressive. 'cause that's what fighting pits do... scratch. So dumb.

Avid Theatre Goer from Oak Park  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 3:30 PM

Egads! This seems almost like a scene straight out of my favorite musical, CATS! Rum Tum Tigger indeed!

Jennifer Scarber from Louisville   

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 3:30 PM

at is horrible! she should be able to walk her dog where ever she pleases.....why is it sooo different if its a pit bull......lots of dogs get into fights all the time....but you never hear about it unless its a pitbull.....thats bs!

Alma from Baltimore  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 3:29 PM

I have to agree with everyone else, if anyone is to blame for this its YOU. YOUR the owner who had an out of control dog. YOUR dog was the one who charged at a dog ON LEASH in a PUBLIC space. YOU were the one NOT paying attention which resulted in YOUR dogs starting a fight. Do your neighbors a favor and LEASH your dog so that owners who DO follow Leash Laws don't have to worry about YOUR dog attacking their dog yet again.

Kelly from West allis  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 3:29 PM

I'm unsure the reason for this posting on this blog? What I got out of it, is be responsible and keep a grip on your dogs leash so it can't get away from you and end up in an altercation with another dog. I hope from now on you keep your dogs leash in a firmer grasp.

Kristeen305 from Wrightwood  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 3:16 PM

Your story leaves out alot of details. Obviously you did not have control of your dog, if you were holding coffee and a briefcase. And to say that an alley is an extension of your yard is to say that I should be allowed to walk around naked in the alley, because it's part of my private property. You should be ashamed that you posted this embarassing story, blaming someone else for your lack of control over your dog. I'm sorry it happened, but you're to blame;not someone walking in a public place

My pits a therapy dog  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 3:14 PM

Maybe just maybe, if you actually had control of your dog this would not have happened. Her dragging her leash ATTACKING the other dog does not in any way constitute you having control of her. If some stranger ran after you in an aggressive manner you'd have attacked back too. This is in no way shape or form the fault of the pit bull (which isnt a breed) or the owner. She had control of her dog and your out of control dog attacked hers.

Denise Gonzalez from Chicago, IL  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 3:12 PM

Eric, get over yourself. Would you have typed such an ignorant blog if the other breed happened to be oh, I don't know a poodle? You were clearly in the wrong. it was YOUR dog that was not under control. Did you ever stop and think the other dog was defensive because YOUR dog went after it. And no, alley's are public domain. If the other dog had actually been in your garage or back yard, different story. Due others a favor, and get some training for your dog.

johanna stadler from south thomaston maine  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 3:02 PM

GIve me a break, the nasty surprise was for the pit bull owner because YOUR dog was not under your control and dragging a leash doesn't count as being leashed or in control. Shame on you for your shortsighted view of who is and isn't allowed to walk a public alley

Nicole  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 2:58 PM

Have you paused for even a second to think about what it was like for this other person, who was legally walking her dog under her control through the alley (which she has every right to) when she was rushed by an attacking out-of-control dog?! The irresponsible, reckless individual in this story was YOU!

Meagan  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 2:35 PM

You make it seem like that happened only bc it was a pitbull but honestly it couldve been any breed that YOUR dog charged at for growling bc u & ur dog came out of a door & surprised them. Your dog ERIC was the 1 that started the fight. a leash law is senseless if the person holding the leash isnt strong enough to keep their dog within reach. This incedent was your fault & Im concerned if the other dog suffered any pain from yours. wrap ur leash around your wrist& control YOUR DOG

Rita  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 2:33 PM

Bless your heart for having people walk in your alley.Im sure that's just a hardship. I'm sorry your Lucy got herself hurt, but that doesnt change the fact that you need to be responsible and take the blame yourself for not being able to control her. I understand that accidents happen, and you probably feel like you need someone to blame, but I'm very sorry to tell you that this accident was simply that. An accident. Please don't blame someone else or their dog.

jean from oak lawn  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 2:28 PM

Seems as if you are the problem. The other dog was on a leash and did not come at your dog. You stated clear as day that your dog ran so fast that the leash came out of your hand. As far as i'm concerned you are at fault and so is your dog.

Pitlover from Pitville  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 2:20 PM

Control your dog idiot your foxhound was the aggressor that you lacked control of!!!!! This idiot probably thinks guns pull there own triggers also!!!! CONTROL YOUR ATTACKING FOXHOUND!!!

Bully Breed Advocate  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 2:13 PM

It sounds like your "American foxhound" was the one at fault! Not the "pitbull" dog defending itself and its owner. Maybe you should put a muzzle on your dog and consider your "American foxhound" potentially dangerous! And whose to say that it was a "pitbull"! Get your dog facts straight and learn that "pitbull" is not even a breed of dog!

Amanda from Traverse City  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:56 PM

This guy is lucky it wasn't me walking my dog in his alley because after making sure my dog was ok and safe I would've laid into him like there was no tomorrow.

Concerned Oak Parker from Oak Park  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:55 PM

Surely this epidemic of pit bull attacks in our sacred alleys can be solved by another property tax hike? Who's with me?

Another Dog Owner from Oak Park  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:52 PM

I'm sorry to hear you had such a scary experience, but you can't blame anyone but yourself. I'm sure the other dog owner was just as frightened to see your dog barreling towards them. The other dog's breed has nothing to do with the fact that your dog was the aggressor and lost control. Instead of picking on pit bulls or complaining about people in your alley, maybe you should take your dog back to basic training classes and learn to control her under stress.

Tonya from Alto  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:51 PM

Flat out you were NOT in control of your dog, you are responsible for the chaos that happened. If that pit bull really wanted to hurt your dog there is NO WAY you could have stopped him without getting hurt. First you were STUPID for not having YOUR DOG under control. Second if that Pit really wanted to hurt your dog, he would have! The alley is public property. If you do not like unknown people in the alley then MOVE! Hopefully to an area where your Aggressive dog is contained.

ChicagoChick from Chicago  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:50 PM

Sorry to hear when any dog is injured but you have to be careful. You don't own the alley anymore than you own the sidewalk. Your dog needed to be supervised and leashed and maybe this wouldn't have happened. Whenever a leashed dog is surprised by an unleashed dog, it guarantees trouble, regardless of breed. And as for your feelings of shock- imagine the other owner's shock of her dog being attacked by yours?? There are always two sides.

A Good Dog Owner  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:46 PM

You deserve credit, Eric, b/c I would never tell anyone this story. Maybe instead of taking to a blog to feel better, you go to the gym. This way, your "leashed, foxhound mix" won't be able to break away from your grip so easily. Your dog was the attacker, not the other way around. You're lucky your dog didn't get punted for attacking someone else's dog. Oh, and Eric, if the dog wanted to bite you, it would have. It was probably just as shocked to see a charging foxhound mix. Sorry Im not sorry

Andrea  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:43 PM

Eric Priceman you should be ashamed of yourself for accusing the pitbull and their owner for starting the fight that YOUR dog initiated by bolting toward the other dog. You couldn't grasp the leash therefore your dog was not leashed. It's unfortunate the pitbull walking by gets blamed for your ignorance. Please educate yourself and keep your dog on a leash. You do not own the alley or the streets and anyone can walk their dog providing they are on a leash and in control. Ignorance is Bliss Eric.

Deni E from Berwyn  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:36 PM

Alleys are not an extension of home onwers yards. It is public. Maybe you shouldn't open your garage while your not having a firm grasp on your ankle biter.The pitbull didnt charge your garage, YOUR dog charged that Pitbull.

Ignorant Folks from Orange  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:34 PM

I was training with my pit bull in my front yard on an easement, when a woman exited her front door with her shih tzu maltese mix on a retractable leash (otherwise known as not a leash, considering it has a maximum of 26 feet before it stops) the dog came barking and lunging at mine, who was in a down stay, I bent down to put my arm between my dog and hers and her dog bit me! She says, "Serves you right for having that dog out in public place." Can't fix stupid.

Jen from Chicago  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:33 PM

You stated "before I knew what had happened my dog bolted out of my grasp and was in an all-out fight with a pit bull." YOUR dog is the one who wasn't restrained and went after the pit bull. YOU were not able to control YOUR dog. I'm the owner of 2 pit bulls who are the farthest thing from vicious. If you can't control your dog then you shouldn't be walking him. This incident was your fault, deal with it. You referring to pit bulls as dangerous is insulting and discriminatory.

Amelia from Columbus, Ohio  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:33 PM

Really? Your dog admittedly attacks another dog (regardless the breed) and the dog and owner are at fault? What a bigoted bunch of hooey. I'm sorry your dog was hurt but don't blame my dog's breed when YOURS was aggressive.

steven from silver spring md  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:31 PM

Your gonna blame someone else for your mis doings... Ignorance must be bliss for idiots like you...

Dog groomer from New Lennox  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:31 PM

All you people from Baltimore are crazy! I work with dogs on a regular basis! I have been bit by more labs and shih tzus then any pit bull. It is all the owner training is a must on all dogs as well as research some people have no business owning dogs in the first place. They only reflect the environment.

Meghan from Elgin, IL  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:30 PM

The ignorance and pitiful nature of this article, and the self-victimization that is happening here is exactly what is causing the homelessness and neglect of an entire breed of dogs. Educate yourself, and take the opportunity to get to know just one pit bull, and you'll see what less ignorant people already know- they are wonderful dogs who care for both humans and other canines alike. I have devoted my life and home to caring for this breed, because of the damage done by people like you.

Another Oak Park resident  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:29 PM

Eric is no different than alot of people around here who feel a sense of entitlement. What a maroon! It was his own fault for not keeping his own dog safe.

rgl  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:26 PM

your dog was on a leash, as you clarified... but you weren't holding the leash. that's unleashed, bud. control your pet, or don't open your garage door until you have secured your pet. this is pet ownership 101 and you are 100% responsible for your dog's injuries. rather than calling for someone to muzzle their dog, learn how to control your own.

Gabrina from Not from Oak Park  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:25 PM

How is your dog leaving it's property to confront another dog okay? You should be cited for having your dog running loose. Also, would you have written an article if this had been a labradoodle or a golden retriever?

Carolyn from Chicago  

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:22 PM

Your dog was off leash and attacked. Her dog was on leash and protected itself from attack. What an ignorant and irresponsible owner you are!

Erin from Portland   

Posted: January 22nd, 2013 1:07 PM

I am shocked at the ignorance of this article. This is why there are leash laws in place. As a trainer and owner of 2 bully breed dogs, it is outrageous that someone with an off leash dog can attack my dog and my dog would be blamed. Horrifying. So a pit bull growled and that was enough to send your normally docile dog into a rage to protect you? Ridiculous. Control your dog. And while you're at it, go to a shelter and spend some time with pit bulls instead of spreading fear and false facts.

Dog Sitter  

Posted: January 20th, 2013 11:22 AM

Most of these comments are absurd- I've dog sat for 2 pit bulls and both were wonderful, laid back and very submissive- I was bitten by a cocker spaniel and attacked by a shih tzu- dogs are as individual as humans- what about dobermans and Rottweilers and German shepherds and aggressive Dalmatians. There are too many unwanted dogs and sadly many of them are Pit Bulls. Practice responsible dog ownership and always have your dog on a leash and under your control!

Nik Brink from Oak Park  

Posted: January 18th, 2013 12:28 PM

My garage faces the sidewalk, so do a lot of other garages. But, of all of the behaviors that do happen in an alley, "Dog Walking" seems to be a pretty harmless one. I understand your shock and worry, Eric. It seems that you experienced a traumatic event, there is no doubt about that. But just because you've experienced what most people would consider a "freak accident", there is no need for a knee jerk reaction. I am sorry to hear about your accident, but nobody was necessarily in the wrong.

Typical Oak Park  

Posted: January 18th, 2013 11:43 AM

ChiEd, sorry to hear your dog was injured. You should probably think about moving from Oak Park before you are forced out since you are taking responsibility for the actions of your dog and describing a pit bull as wonderful under normal conditions.

ChiEd from Oak Park  

Posted: January 18th, 2013 9:32 AM

Mr. Priceman: The exact same thing happened to me. My dog ran from our garage and scuffled with a leashed pit bull in the alley. My dog got the worst of it. You know who was at fault? Me. Like the guy who rear-ends the car that stops suddenly is always at fault, the unleashed dog is always at fault. In my case the pit bull happens to live next door, and I know she's wonderful when she's not being set upon by an unleashed aggressor. (And my dog is normally a real sweetheart. Still my fault.)

What Extension? from Oak Park  

Posted: January 17th, 2013 3:43 PM

A man writes a public letter portending to be a victim because his unsecured dog attacks a pit bull in "his" alley. Later, he tries to re-frame his letter in the comments as a "neighborly warning". A handful of supporters insist that "we pay high taxes therefore we expect our alley will be safe" from pet owners legally walking their leashed dogs more than a block from their homes. This is all either an elaborate well-crafted troll, or more likely a nexus of delusional thought.

Typical Oak Park  

Posted: January 17th, 2013 2:27 PM

Chet, maybe you and Eric could petition to have checkpoints installed to keep the the unsafe outsiders where they belong.

Chet from Oak Park  

Posted: January 17th, 2013 1:56 PM

Sometimes change is good. Maybe he raises a valid point about overall safety when he brings up the lingering issue. I am not sure I want dog owners parading up and down the alleys. That's what sidewalks are for. I somewhat agree with his premise that immediate neighbors should be what we find in our alleys. We pay hefty taxes to live here, shouldn't there be an implied element of safety that comes with the high price?

Responsible Dog Owner  

Posted: January 17th, 2013 1:40 PM

I think the problem wasn't that he was highlighting general alley safety...that's fine & I agree. The problem was the being offended that someone was walking a dog down "his" alley & the asking for changes to a completely valid, legal behavior. My concerns, personally, are the potholes & speeding. People should use caution in alleys precisely because there are dog walkers, bikes, kids playing, etc..

Chet from Oak Park  

Posted: January 17th, 2013 1:27 PM

Oak Park Dog Owner you need to get a clue. It would be very interesting to see your reaction if you opened up your garage door and faced a pit bull. I think that is the point the writer makes. Nowhere in his letter do I see him absolving himself of fault. He admits his dog pulled away. It felt threatened and did what any dog would probably do in that case. An unfortunate accident. The larger point he makes and we should appreciate is not to assume our alleys are always safe. Thanks Eric.

Dogophobiac from Baltimore  

Posted: January 17th, 2013 12:24 PM

Why does anyone need ANY kind of dog? Ban them all! They petrify me and get my knickers all in a twist! My WORD!

Responsible Dog Owner  

Posted: January 17th, 2013 11:59 AM

Wow, tell us how you really feel, crazies from Baltimore! Pitbulls are not a dangerous breed--though as I said, they do need training. The problem is owners, not the dogs themselves. That said, alleys are not private. If you see criminal activity call the police. If you want safe alleys, ask for more patrols. But you will still get "people who shouldn't be there" because, well, they have a right to be there. You don't own the alley. The Village does. Speaking of, please pave them. lol

Yoka from Baltimore  

Posted: January 17th, 2013 10:47 AM

The pit people are always overly entitled. When that disgusting pit bull Charlie was ordered put down for savaging a police horse, the pit people came in saying a policeman had no business in a dog park with his horse. Now the same pit people think it's stupid that this man wants his alleyway free of known dangerous dogs. They want to take the entire public space away from all of us -- even police! It's time to stop catering to this crazy crowd and ban pit bulls.

Lisbeth from Baltimore  

Posted: January 17th, 2013 10:44 AM

She was loitering in the alley because she knew her pit bull was dangerous. We need to ban pit bull type dogs. Everywhere, under all the names the pit fans think up for them to disguise some new pit-mix breed. No one needs a pit bull. Our children and normal dogs need us to make them go extinct.

Professor Kitty Whiskers from Oak Park  

Posted: January 17th, 2013 9:38 AM

I walk my cat on a leash. Is that weird?

Oak Park Dog Owner  

Posted: January 17th, 2013 8:49 AM

This letter is ludicrous and I think the owner of the Foxhound is more at fault than anything. Your dog escaped your grasp and ran at another dog who probably tried to protect its owner too. Pit bull or not, you are at fault. Next time put your dog in the car before opening the door. Second point, last I checked, alleys weren't private property. I'm appalled by this article and can't believe the Journal would even publish such nonsense. Get a clue Eric.

sb from Oak Park, IL  

Posted: January 17th, 2013 8:40 AM

This was an unfortunate incident between the dogs, the bigger issue I think you bring up is what goes on in our Alleys. I know in mine there are a lot of people walking through that shouldn't be there, I have had things stolen out of our yard from the alley, people smoking pot in the alley, and drug deals. This SHOULD be a safe place and an extension of our homes.

Keepn it Real  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 4:11 PM

I could be wrong BUT im pretty sure that im not, you words were "My dog bolted from my grasp" that means that your dog got away from you and bit off more that it could chew with another dog right? you used PItbull a few times i noticed also, if she was walking a toy dog does that mean she would have been the victim? get a grip dude, if you live in Oak Park then you should be able to walk,run,crawl or skip down any alley or street in town if you would like to do so.

Confused  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 3:57 PM

Fair enough. I take back some of what I said at least. You're right we need to be prepared. Just be aware that your original letter came across as saying something different.

Typical Oak Park   

Posted: January 16th, 2013 3:56 PM

Were you warning others that people not from your neighborhood use the alley or warning people who use the alley to stay away from your house so they are not attacked.

Not MY dog...  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 3:48 PM

I believe the appropriate warning can be found on the wikipedia entry for the American Foxhound: "Because of its strong hunting instinct, American Foxhounds should not be trusted off-lead." But thanks for the reminder.

Eric Priceman from Oak Park  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 3:34 PM

To "Confused" and all the others who rush to criticize me, I am truly surprised that you view my words as "harsh." This was a very scary and unpleasant experience. I took the time to write about it (not using a nickname) as a warning that this could happen to you. You all choose to judge me. The issue is not right or wrong, but that potential danger lurks when opening the garage door. Now maybe you will be more prepared than I was that day when you open your door. I hope so.

Real List  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 3:17 PM

Eric - We are all thankful that none of us, nor one of your neighbor's children, were on your leash.

Confused  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 2:53 PM

So, Mr. Priceman, your dog was on a leash but still ended up in the alley...your letter didn't sound contrite or helpful warning others to keep hold of their pets because pedestrians use the alley. It sounded alarmist, failed to take personal responsibility, and blamed the other guy. If we're harsh it's because you were.

Eric Priceman from Oak Park  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 2:39 PM

OK. It is amazing to me that people love to throw out disparaging comments without thoroughly reading the facts. As it says in the first sentence of my letter, my dog WAS on a leash. Unfortunately what most of you knuckleheads who are quick to judge don't realize is that I was not looking for sympathy. Instead I wrote this without shame to warn all of you that the same could happen to you. As much as I love my dog, I am thankful it was not one of you or our neighbor's children. Foolish me.

Snoop Doggy Dogg  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 1:54 PM

So you're saying your unleashed dog attacked a leashed dog on public property? Might not want to be putting that in the newspaper....

Responsible Dog Owner  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 12:46 PM

I'm sure Mr. P was surprised. But I think the piling on you see is because there was an equally surprised dog in a place it had a right to be & Mr. P's dog was the one that wasn't under control. If anybody is apologizing here, at least as the story is written, it should be Mr. P with a sheepish "sorry my dog got away." It's the false injustice that is the reason he's being made fun of.

Magpie  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 12:28 PM

It is perhaps helpful for everyone to remember that your garage is an extension of your home, the alley less so, but you do pay considerable taxes to be where you are and to legitimately expect 'your turf' to be neutral/safe. When you see a strange dog that doesn't appear to be housed in the immediate area, it is jarring - it adds to the sense of the unknown - which, in this case, wasn't a pleasant experience. I hope you and your pet are feeling better!

Magpie  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 12:23 PM

You have my genuine sympathies, Mr. Priceman. Most responders are piling onto you with abandon, decrying your concerns and ridiculing your point of view. I have been absolutely terrified of dogs - all varieties - my entire life and it made any casual jaunt in Oak Park a terror, particularly when I was a child. In addition to being scoffed at, you can expect to hear what a noble breed someone's dog is, etc. etc., but no sympathies for you or (in this case) your pet's plight.

muntz  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 11:53 AM

If I were to construct an "extension of my yard", I would probably use some other material other than concrete with large fissures as the dominant feature.

What Extension? from Oak Park  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 11:43 AM

Your alley is not your backyard, it's a high speed freeway for cable trucks & contractors. It's a trail for trash looters. It's a clandestine path for shady people. And in your case, a place you let your dog play off leash.

Not MY dog...  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 10:42 AM

The alley, the pit bull, the andrenalin....quite a litany of denial. Lemme guess: in addition to the cup of coffee, briefcase, and leash, you also had a garage door opener, car keys, and perhaps the newspaper in yours hands. Now that you know your dog can indeed be aggressive, you should be adjusting your routine accordingly for the safety of yourself, your neighborhood, and your dog rather than blame others for your failure to control it. At least you didn't spill your coffee.

Responsible Dog Owner  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 9:24 AM

You are responsible for the actions of your dog. Period. And, yes, the alley is a public place someone has a right to walk their dog. That said, we've noticed a couple of unruly pitbulls in our neighborhood lately who are clearly new. Wonderful breed--but they need training. Sorry to hear about your dog, but lesson learned.

Typical Oak Park Reaction  

Posted: January 16th, 2013 7:30 AM

So your dog attacked a leashed dog on a public right of way and you are the victim? Your dog sounds more dangerous than the pit bull. I am glad that you have taken the time to provide your name and description of your lack of ability to control your dog so that the woman your dog attacked can sue you.

Be Aware from Oak Park  

Posted: January 15th, 2013 11:51 PM

I can see you really had a shock and I'm not surprised you are feeling more than just a little bit angry. I disagree that alley's are an extension of our back yard. Nope they are not. Oak Park has seen an increase in dog ownership and as they are territorial, dog owners need to be increasingly more vigilant to prevent what unfortunately happened to you. Hope your dog will be all right.

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