Mar. 12, 2007

(Most) Dogs Like Me

I went for my usual Sunday "long run" yesterday. Quotes because I only did 16 K as I'm trying to avoid pushing too hard while I finish recovering from my flu. I did my 15.56 K in 1:24. It was a nice day, hovering around freezing and sunny, although I had to watch for ice patches owing to the melting and freezing. Toward the end of my run I was by myself as I'd taken a wrong turn and most of the other runners were either going longer or shorter distances.

So why the dog reference? I got bitten! It was kind of funny really. I was passing a man walking two little lap dogs on leashes, walking myself because it was an icy spot, when one of the dogs lunged forward and bit me on my right calf, drawing blood. 99.9 percent of dogs are friendly to me, usually seeking a pat on the ribs or a head rub, which I'm glad to provide. I spoke a bit sharply to the owner, who claimed his beloved companion had never acted that way before, while briefly enjoying the mental image of using the ill-mannered canine for field goal practice. In the end I just continued my run.

Having a coffee with some running friends afterward I realised I should have got the owners phone number and determined the health of his dog. So it was off the the walk-in clinic for a disinfecting wash and tetanus shot. No real risk of rabies, so no shots needed for that. A man out in Alberta wasn't so lucky, apparently he was bitten by a bat last August but didn't develop symptoms until January. Now there is nothing they can do for him...

My risk is of bacterial infection. Apparently 100% of human bites become infected and 80% of cat bites become infected while only 20% of dog bites become infected. I've got an antibiotic prescription, but I'll just watch for a day or so before deciding whether to fill it.

Years ago I got badly scratched by a stray kitten which I'd caught to take to the vet because it's paw was nearly severed. Poor little thing didn't make it and it that case I ended up with both tetanus and rabies shots... Because I was a geologist at the time and often in areas without access to good medical care my family doctor recommended that I get immunised against rabies (only lasts about five years). I agreed with his suggestion, but regretted it by the time the eighth needle was being stuck into my arm!

I heard from Chris yesterday, he's having a good time in England but he lost his wallet which contained almost $200 of shopping money. He's pretty upset about it, but maybe he's learned a lesson about not carrying too much cash around. Tough lesson.

Listening to: Walking Away by Craig David from Born to Do It.

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