Avoiding road accidents with dogs

I was driving very slowly through Álora, because the traffic ahead was approaching a roundabout, when a black and white dog on the pavement suddenly chose to dart across the road ahead. The bump alarmed me and told a sad tale, or so I feared as I went to investigate.

My mind flashed to when I was nineteen and driving through Alton in UK and a spaniel jumped from a hedge and was killed instantly. Looking back now there was nothing I could have done but as an animal lover I was deeply shocked. Had it happened again?

To my intense relief I saw a bent number plate and a black and white dog tearing away with no apparent injury apart from a raging headache and having learned, I hope, a bitter lesson.

Some dogs have road sense, usually because of good training by the owner. Most do not. Make sure you train yours. Not only is it fair to the dog but bear in mind you are financially responsible for any damage done by your dog wandering loose.

If you live anywhere near a road it is a very good idea to fence in your garden. Fencing need not be unsightly. Nursery gardens have colourful, attractive climbing plants to cover the wiring which need not be high. Just have the poles sloping in wards so, however large your dog, it cannot jump over it. If you bury the lower edge of the wire netting in concrete and breeze blocks that will curb any tunnelling ambitions too.

Some tradespeople, including postal workers, may leave gates open, so make sure you have each gate fitted with a strong self-closing device.

Do it now... do not think about it and let your dog be a victim of your delay.