(Was reading the dog-park and toddlers thread, which made me think of this story).
I used to work as a receptionist at a veterinary clinic. We had a woman bring in her Labrador, a beautiful chocolate lab who was there for yearly check-up, shots, etc. We were running a few minutes behind and she sat down on one of the benches to wait to be taken back to the exam room. The dog sat down by her feet and was just hanging out, minding its own business. Not scared/nervous but staying close to her owner in an unfamiliar place.
Enter Special Snowflake. SS is here to pick up some medications for her animal as well as some pet food, which she can't be bothered to retrieve off the shelves to the left and right of my desk. She is also gabbing nonstop on her cell phone. I am alone at the front desk and am scurrying around to gather up her food off the shelf as well as getting her meds out of the locked med cubby.
At first I didn't notice that SS had a SS Jr. because the kid was so short I could not see her from behind our tall counter. But I noticed the first woman (chocolate lab lady) had wrapped both arms around her dog's neck and was struggling to contain a snarling, growling, "I'm-going-to-eat-your-FACE!!" dog. I think my jaw must have hit the desk because this little girl (~ 4) kept inching closer and closer to the dog and holding out her hand for petting. ETA: Survival instincts are lacking here!!!
I ran around the counter to prevent the imminent childus-eatus and to warn SS (still on her phone and still oblivious) when one of the technicians came out from the back to take the chocolate-lab and her owner to the exam rooms.
No, SS never got off the phone to prevent her child from being devoured by Kujo the Bipolar Lab.
I rang her up as quickly as possible but had not yet built up my polite spine. The things I wanted to say would've gotten me fired and really, I just wanted her gone.
As they were leaving, I apologized to the dog's owner and thanked her for protecting the child. She seemed grateful and just sort of shook her head about the whole incident. I secretly wondered if perhaps that dog would be better off muzzled, since kids apparently trigger a case of the crazies but didn't comment.
I hope that kid makes it to maturity.