[nagdu] Please don't pet me, I'm working.

Debby Phillips semisweetdebby at gmail.com
Sun Aug 30 05:19:32 UTC 2015

Hi Raven, I wouldn't bother with a sign.  I've tried, twice.  The 
first one was a bright orange sign that said, "Please Ignore me, 
I'm working".  It was attached to the backstrap of my dog's 
harness.  It could be seen for a mile while we were walking, and 
as we waited for busses, etc.  People would come up and pet my 
dog.  Eventually I was reduced to angrily asking, "Can you read?" 
To which the person would generally answer sheepishly, "Yes." 
"Did you not see the sign my dog is wearing?" "Well, um, yes." 
"So why are you petting my dog?" The most insulting answer I got 
was: "I didn't think you'd notice." Are you kidding? The next 
sign I got was some other bright, obnoxious color.  This one 
said, "Please don't pet me, I'm working.  I thought well, maybe 
if the sign says don't pet me, maybe it would work.  Nope.  Same 
reaction.  Same stupid answers.  The only thing it did was 
increase my anger level.  In fact, I wonder if the bright-colored 
signs didn't attract more attention then just having no sign at 
all.  Part of the problem is that some people don't have a 
problem with their dogs being petted in harness, as long as the 
dog is not actively working, i.e.  lying under a table, or 
sitting quietly at their partner's side.  This makes it difficult 
for those of us who do not wish our dogs to be petted at all in 
harness.  So I could be dictatorial like some people and say, 
"You know, those of you who allow your dogs to be petted in 
harness should not do that, since it makes it more difficult for 
those of us who do not wish our dogs to be petted".  It's true, 
but I won't say it, because people need to make their own choices 
about that, just like people need to make their choices about 
disclosing to airlines, taxis, etc.  or showing ID.  Sure, it 
would make it easier if we all behaved the same way regarding all 
dog issues, but that's unrealistic, and it ain't gonna happen.    
Debby and Nova

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