"First the dogs were barking, so I looked out and saw this little girl about 8-10 years old on her bike in the middle of the street. So I went downstairs to bring the dogs in so they'd stop barking. Just as I got to the back door, there she was at the gate, opening it! I hollered at her, "Hey, what are you doing?" and she said "I just wanted to pet the dogs."
She just wanted to walk into a yard of FOUR large dogs who are now barking their heads off because there is a stranger??? Mind you, our gate isn't even CLOSE to the street! In fact, you can't SEE it from the street! You have to walk up into the yard, and from the street the gate is hidden by a large evergreen!
The description he gave doesn't even come close to fitting any of the 8 kids who live on our end of the block. The first thing that came to mind was that this girl has autism or some type of developmental issues that she would just walk into someone's yard full of dogs. Not only that, but she's not from our area. I told Dean, "Well, follow her to see where she lives!"
He was, understandably, reluctant to follow a little girl in his car, so he stayed back quite a way. She went to a home about 12-15 blocks away, with a yard full of kids. While I was driving home I called my neighbor to see if she saw the little girl outside. "Well, actually I did! I rarely look out to that side of my house, but your dogs were barking like someone was here, so I checked, just in time to see the girl in your yard."
Later, when I came home we went up to that house. The dad answered the door. As he's telling me the girl I described lives a couple doors down, I hear HIS daughter holler from out of sight, "She didn't let the dogs out! They were just chasing her down the street!" Dean hadn't mentioned seeing another kid with her, so I asked, "Did you SEE her by my house?" She backpedalled quickly. We decided later she probably bolted as soon as she saw her friend head into our yard.
So I go to the house the guy pointed out. I can hear a little dogs barking/snarling just inside the door. I've walked by this house before, and the little dog is NOT nice. I'm a trainer, and I wouldn't consider approaching this little dog. So the mom answers the door. I describe the little girl, and that the other dad said she lives at this house, "Oh, my daughter would never do THAT! It must be the little girl next door, they look a lot alike."
"Is your daughter a little heavy set. Does she have a purple bike, and was she playing with the kids next door about 45 minutes ago?" Well yes, in fact, she was. "But my daughter would never do that. She knows better than that. Someone else must have let the dogs out."
"Well my neighbor saw her do it too."
So the mom calls the daughter to come outside. Apparently she'd been watching us talk from a window. She came to the door sobbing, "I SAID I was SORRY to the guy!" When pushed only a tiny bit more she told her mom that yes, she'd opened the gate. I explained to the mom that my gate isn't anywhere near the street. She had to come waaaaaaay into my yard, out of site of the street, to open the gate. "I just don't understand why she would do that. She KNOWS better."
"Well, apparently she DOESN'T know better, because she did it. Not only that, but we live quite a ways away. (turning to the little girl) You know, you don't know my dogs. They're nice dogs, but ALL dogs have teeth, and AND dog might bite someone they don't know. My dogs don't know you, and you could have been bitten."
You know what really ticks me off? Several things!!! FIRST, the mother immediately denied that her daughter would have done such a thing. You know, I raised 4 boys. When something happened, I'm more inclined to believe the adult first! Secondly, HAD my dogs bitten this kid (I can't say they NEVER would, because like I told the girl, ALL dogs have teeth, which means ANY dog has the potential to bite.) But had one of them bitten the girl, who would have been to blame?? US!!! WE Would have been sued because our dog bit someone, never mind that they came into OUR yard.
I'm inclined to think this little girl gets away with a lot of crap. She didn't APPEAR to have any delays, but we all know that there are many things that are invisible, autism among them. I can't say in our 2 minute exchange that this girl appeared to be on the spectrum, but who am I to say. Clearly there is SOMETHING going on there, or why would she do such a thing? And, if there IS something, why in the world was she so far away? I'd really like to send a letter of warning, saying that I understand sometimes our kids do dumb stuff, but it's the parents responsibility, and that had something happened to one of our dogs we would file a suit. Because we would. I don't expect I'll ever see that little girl in our yard again, but we still want to lock our gates, which makes it difficult for our OWN child to get in/out of the yard!