I had my first real scare with an unknown dog and the girls today.
The girls, as I've mentioned, are in love with dogs. ALL dogs. The problem is that they don't realize that other dogs might not be as friendly and tolerant to ear and hair-pulling as Riley and Finn.
Every morning, after breakfast, I head out with the brood so that the dogs can run free and burn off energy. I've been going down to a path along the water because it is usually quiet enough for me to let the girls out of the stroller to walk. There aren't too many other dogs running around.
While we were walking along the boardwalk this morning, Teagan was a little ways ahead of me and Quinn was just behind me. Out of nowhere, a fox-like dog came running at Teagan. I could tell that something wasn't right, but my sweet dog-obsessed little girl was clueless and went running towards him. The fox was clearly on edge and unsure about the little person in front of him. He started barking at Teagan as he got closer. I grabbed Quinn and started moving quickly towards T, calling her name. She wasn't hearing me at all. Then, out of nowhere, both Riley and Finn came flying in barking, making a barrier between Teagan and the fox. They continued to bark at him, moving him away from their little sister. By this point, I had grabbed T and was letting the boys handle the fox.
It all happened so quickly. While I don't think the fox would have done anything to Teagan, I don't know for sure. I'm thankful that Riley and Finn had the good sense from afar to know that something wasn't right (and the speed to get there faster than I could!). I've wondered over the months if the boys see themselves as the girls' protectors. They clearly do :)