Dog Bite 

Copyright © 2008 by Tiki Kritzer Seger.  All rights reserved.


My brother Guy (four years old and a royal pain in the butt) and I (six) went with my father to visit one of his cronies one day; this man had a huge, black dog that looked just like a cuddly teddy bear.


Guy pulled the dog’s ears and tail, poked it in the eyes and punched it in the ribs; it licked his nose and generally slobbered lovingly all over him.  I patted it gently on the head and it let out a low growl and snapped at me – it took me several minutes to realize the dog hadn’t just nipped me, but had bitten deeply into my right cheek and that the blood dripping slowly onto the slatted wooden floor was mine.


I started to cry just as my father and his friend realized what had happened.  The dog was immediately locked up in another room, a temporary bandage was slapped onto my face and my father asked his associate to watch out for Guy while he took me to the hospital; he then carried me outside and flagged down a cab.  As soon as the driver understood that it was an emergency, he put his foot on the gas and the taxi lurched through Manhattan towards the hospital at top speed.  It was an old car and the shocks were not very good, so it swayed back and forth with the motion like a sailboat in a storm.


It was hot and musty in the backseat of the cab, and I was slightly hysterical, somewhat in shock and extremely carsick; I threw up all over my father and the black leather upholstery.  The taxi driver started cursing and saying that my father would have to clean up the mess; I was crying and gasping and my father kept trying to soothe me and apologize to the driver at the same time.  We finally arrived at the hospital and my father shoved some money (about three times the normal fare) at the driver and ran with me to the emergency room.


I was immediately taken to see a doctor, who closed all of the gaping wounds in my cheek with little, white, stick on strips; he called them butterfly bandages.  I was so taken with the idea of having butterflies fluttering all over my face, that I stopped crying and started smiling.  Later, when we were home again, I told my mother that the butterflies had healed me.