That’s my dog, Josie. Josie is awesome. She is big and furry and looks kind of like a wolf. And she makes Chewbacca sounds. We probably should have called her Chewie. She can run all day and hold her bladder all night, and she loves to stay outside all day in the winter. Josie is obsessed with squirrels, and she even catches them sometimes.

She loves people — except mail carriers. Josie is also an excellent guard dog, because who would break into a house with a big wolf-looking dog hanging out on the front porch? And when my daughters stick their fingers in her eyes or nose, she just wags her tail and flops over on her back so they can rub her belly.

Yep, unless you are a mail carrier, a squirrel, or another dog, my dog is awesome.

It’s those other dogs that present the real problem. People seem to think that because their dog is well-behaved and friendly, they can just walk around without putting their dog on a leash. In the city. Where there are tons of other dogs. In particular, my dog.

Josie hates other dogs. She responds to other dogs with a scary levels of violence, and she is big enough and strong enough to do serious damage.

That is not actually the problem, though. I can control my dog. Within the circle of her leash, I reign supreme. The problem is your dog, the one you think is fine running around off leash. My dog has a talent for provoking dogs like yours.

You know what fighting words are? They are words so offensive that even reasonable, rational people are likely to respond to them with violence. Dogs have a lot of fighting words. Dogs will fight at the sniff of an insult, and my dog is the master of fighting words. She knows she is on a leash, and she knows she can’t get to your dog; she has to make your dog come to her. And she will. She will do anything, and say anything, to get your dog to enter the circle of her leash so she can bite its face off. No subject is off limits. Not your dog’s missing reproductive organs, the height of its pee, the consistency of its poop, the appearance of its owner. Nothing. No matter where your dog’s goat is, Josie will get it.

Your dog may be well-behaved around children and dogs who like other dogs, but in the presence of my dog’s taunting, you will not recognize your dog. It will come for Josie in a fury, and she will bite your dog’s ear off and stuff its tail through its nostril before it can sniff her butthole, leash or no leash. Once your dog has entered the circle of my dog’s leash, it’s game over.

So keep your dog on its leash. There are many dogs like mine. I cannot do anything about my dog’s obsessive hatred of other dogs, but I can control her. You, however, will not be able to control your dog in the presence of my dog, no matter how hard you try. Not without a leash, anyway.

Published by Sam Glover

Sam Glover is the founder of, and likes to skateboard.

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  1. I have two chis. Big dogs off leashes are 10-seconds away from making them no more. I’ve almost had that happen several times. Your post assumes that dog owners are capable of being self-aware and conscientious and courteous and intelligent. They’re not. Another case in point: People that don’t pick up after their big dogs. There’s a special place Hell for these people.

  2. I have a pit-bull mix. The sweetest dog ever, however if you judge a dog by it’s appearances you would think different. I love walking my dog. I dislike how other dog owners seem to believe that my dog is an ex-con or convicted serial dog murderer.

    With that said, my dog get’s along with other dogs while on his leash and off his leash at dog parks. He doesn’t however take any sort of disrespect. I recall a specific instance when someone let their Great Dane attempt to mount my pit bull. He wasn’t having any of it, my little ball of furry muscle and teeth sounded the warning call by barking at the Great Dane. Luckily this time, the Great Dane understood, although my dog might be small and stout. He wasn’t one to mess about.

    My dog had barked a total of 12 times since I got him nearly 4 years ago. So far, when he barks other dogs and I listen, because he isn’t all bark.

    The short version: Keep your dog on the leash, even well-behaved dogs, will behave like…well dogs. Also, it doesn’t matter the size of your dog to start a war with words that may end up in teeth.

    1. On the subject of pit bulls, I rode past a woman with three off-leash pit bulls, two of which were chasing down a young woman pushing a stroller while the woman screamed at the dogs to come back.

      The dog breed isn’t particularly important, obviously, except that it seems like a pit bull owner, knowing the stigma that comes with the breed, would be extra careful about things like that.

      1. Hi Sam, Sadly the breed attracts a large number of irresponsible people who are interested in getting a dog for prestige or power (Not reasons to purchase a dog, or make any decisions whatsoever). I adopted my dog from an animal rescue ( that had found him running through Iowa with reckless abandon and saved him from a “high kill shelter” when he was a 7 month old puppy.

        I appreciate you noting that the breed isn’t the cause of the problems. However, you can’t help but notice the large number of apparent pit-bull owners that propagate the stereotype.

        Also I will mention that the Pit-Bull is a energy filled dog, although I don’t know the specifics of the situation you described, I could very easily see it in a positive light and not just a negative light having known my dog’s personality. I also recognize that most people who read your story assign the stigma you mention to the breed and automatically may view the scenario as a negative situation. Pit-Bulls that are loved and treated well are fun, playful and loving and enjoy the company of kids of all ages. For the people that may not believe me about the personality of this breed, let me introduce you to Sharky… The Pit Bull from Texas.

        1. What I meant was that when two dogs are snapping at your heels while you are pushing your baby in a stroller, the breed doesn’t really matter. It’s a terrifying experience whether you’re dealing with collies or dobermans. Or pit bulls.

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