Friday, January 31, 2014

Dogs and me

click photo to enlarge

Many years ago, when my children were young we were on a beach in Lancashire when a large dog came racing towards us, ignoring the shouted commands of its owner. It jumped up at my sons, towering over them, frightening them, almost knocking them down. That was one of the few occasions in my life I've come up with a retort that I couldn't improve on after the event. I said to the dog owner, as she ran up assuring us that it "only wanted to play", "There's nothing like a well-trained dog, and that's nothing like a well-trained dog." My observation-cum-complaint didn't go down well with the owner, but then that was my intention. I must surely have heard those words somewhere before, I can't imagine I thought them up myself. But they came out with perfect timing as though they were all mine.

I have nothing against dogs. We had them when I was a child and I enjoyed them. I've known and liked many dogs that are good-tempered and well-trained. But I've also come across plenty that are none of these things due to the improper care they receive, or the way they are used to protect property, especially if it's a farm through which a public footpath runs. For many years I thought I'd have a dog when I retired, but I've reached the conclusion that a dog would restrict what we do far too much, so I'm very likely to remain dogless.

The other week, when were on Skegness beach, that episode with my children and the dog came to mind once more. It often does when we see dog walkers on a beach. I well understand the desire of owners to let their dogs run free in the wide open space because the animals visibly enjoy the experience. I just wish those who have no control over their dogs wouldn't do so. However, I'm pleased to say that those providing the human and doggy interest in today's photograph were impeccably behaved.

photograph and text © Tony Boughen

Camera: Sony RX100
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 31.8mm (86mm - 35mm equiv.)
F No: f7.1
Shutter Speed: 1/800 sec
Exposure Compensation: -0.3 EV
Image Stabilisation: On