Most any urban area that you go in Germany......winter or summer....day or night....you will come across dogs being walked by their owners. Generally, you get the impression that most dogs are fairly obedient and owners are capable of cleaning any dog-poop left on the ground.
Occasionally....you might see a case where one dog is a bit feisty over another dog or worried about his outstanding status in public. All in all....things work well.
This past week in Wiesbaden.....we had one of those odd events occur with dog owners and you kinda shake your head.
Dog owner #1 (a German lady) came up on central walk-platz of Wiesbaden. Cops won't give the precise location but generally indicate that it was in the center of town. Cops also won't say the breed of dog that the German lady had.....maybe it doesn't matter or they just didn't want to put it into the report.
So, there is this encounter between dog owner #1 and dog owner #2 (a German guy). There is some type of verbal interaction. One gets the impression that neither knew each other.
The gal wasn't a Wiesbaden resident.....she was from Rheingau (the wine-producing district around Wiesbaden). The guy? He's a Wiesbaden resident.
So around seven that evening....this encounter occurs....two dogs....two owners. There's talk between the guy and the gal. It starts off in a meaningless way. Cops don't suggest the opening line, or who said what first. You can suspect an inconsequential conversation going on. Maybe a comment on one's dog, his behavior, or perhaps a comment on the weather,
Somewhere in this short conversation....things go wrong. One comment leads to another.....each having a consequence, and creating turmoil for no good reason.
Maybe the guy did make an insulting suggestion, or lurid comment. Maybe he was just reacting to a beer or two that he'd had in the hour before.
Finally, with full fury at hand.....the German lady pulls out a can of irritant spray.....the peppery stuff that you buy for self-defense.
Someone on the street calls the cops, who react quickly and show up in a matter of minutes. In the center of Wiesbaden....there's probably always two or three cops always prepared for robberies or assault.
They arrive to find this guy pretty hostile....rubbing his eyes....and try to come to some reasonable conclusion over what happened.
In the end, they arrested the guy for verbal insults (you can be charged in Germany for making statements against someone). They also arrested the woman for assault. I'm guessing it's assault of the second-or-third-degree. Not much is said after that point. You'd assume they got released, and will have to show up in two weeks at some Wiesbaden court episode.....each explaining to a judge over what happened and a decision is made over the punishment handed out.
My humble guess is that each will have some type of anger-management requirement to accomplish, and pay some type of fine with a suspended sentence for everything else.....ALL from a brief encounter on a street where two dog-owners had a brief discussion and quick escalation of hostility.
The two dogs? Well....you are left to wonder. Hopefully, both accomplished their primary function while out on the walk. Although you have to wonder....as both owners were arrested....what happened to dog #1 and dog #2. They likely stood there.....wondering what the heck the master was getting all frustrated or argumentative about, and if this might interrupt the nightly schedule. As a dog, you'd like to ensure continuity and keep up with a schedule.
Just a little episode in my neighborhood.