What Pack Looks Like

One of my colleagues raises these little dogs that look like mini-Huskies. I forget the name of the breed; I’ll update this entry if I think of it or I ask her at dinner. Today, during my second run with the fencing team, they got free by opening a door inside, scooting down the basement stairs, and then coming up through the open cellar doors. They circled around Clio, yapping and biting at her, and wound up grabbing her several times. She rolled onto her belly as four? five? attacked her from all sides. I wound up grabbing one of them by the scruff of the neck, intending to hold her in place, but discovered she was quite light. I was able to lift her into the air and pass her off to my colleague. We each grabbed one more apiece before the pack settled down. Clio was uninjured during this.

Now, she’s sleeping. She had a mile-and-a-half walk this morning, two half-mile runs with the fencing teams, and defended herself against a pack attack. Worn out, I tell you.

I think the most exciting, and scariest part, of the whole scene was not knowing just how many dogs were on her. There was no back against which to place ourselves. We were in the relative open, and the dogs were able to come at her from all sides. Two usually were at her front, while one was at her side, and two more behind her. It was flanking attacks from D&D and other sources come to life, really, and it was amazing how effective it was. They got in several vicious nips to her ears and belly before reinforcements arrived and I was able to get her calmed down. I swatted several of them across the nose, and I’m sorry to say — actually, no, I’m not really that sorry — that I kicked one, though not particularly viciously or on-target. They are valuable dogs, after all, once they’re trained and separated from their pack. In any case, only seizing one by the scruff did much good at all; they tended to dart in, get in a couple of attacks, and dart back out again.

Contrary to the usual expectations about THAC0 and other systems, there weren’t many misses. I think it’s one of the problems of most gaming systems, is that warriors just miss too often against non-warriors. Remind me to make a game mechanic sometime in which trained warriors automatically take out non-trained warriors, or mostly-automatically.

Joseph Lemasolai Lekuton, in Facing the Lion mentions the fascinating detail that a herd of cows, when they smell a lion on the wind, will begin pissing in unison, a sound like rain and yet totally unlike rain. The lions take advantage of this, by positioning two lions downwind of the herd, at the north end of a cattle camp, and one upwind, so the scent will drift down into the camp, and panic the herd northward. There’s the added advantage that if the cows get sufficiently wound up in the process, the herd will trample their human protectors, and the lions can then kill and eat their fill. That’s pretty damn scary.

Once Clio was calmed down, it was back to normal. Oh, are we running again for the joy of running? Awesome!

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4 comments

  1. A pack of three german shepherds chased me home from school one day when I was in 5th grade. Scared the hell out of me.

    A pack of dogs killed 1/2 my chicken flock a few years ago, left quite a mess.

    Dogs are not necessarily so domesticated and people think.

  2. A pack of three german shepherds chased me home from school one day when I was in 5th grade. Scared the hell out of me.

    A pack of dogs killed 1/2 my chicken flock a few years ago, left quite a mess.

    Dogs are not necessarily so domesticated and people think.

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