Sunday, May 2, 2010

A Cautionary Tale


I'm passing this story along so that it doesn't happen to someone else with pets or children.

Since arriving back on Sanibel Island in Florida I would take Ike, my 16-month old Boxer, for a long walk along the beach at sunset. At one particular spot there was a crab trap buoy that been pushed close to shore from several storms. At low tide it would be right on the sand and at high tide it would be 10-feet out. Ike loved to grab the end of the rope and give it a tug or wade out and grab it trying to pull it to shore.

Last night he ran right up to buoy and pounced on it. Immediately he was howling in pain. At first I couldn't see the problem, then I saw a five-inch lure with two treble hooks one of which was firmly embedded in his right paw. As Ike struggled, it went in deeper and he was now caught on a front and back leg. I held him to the ground and tried get the hooks out. In the meantime the rope on the buoy was pulling tighter making everything worse. Thank God I had my knife with me and I managed to get it out and cut the rope. Somehow I got the hook out of the rear leg and he jerked forward driving one of the hooks right into the little finger on my left hand. He kept trying to bite the lure which would have been a disaster. I screamed "leave it" and he responded despite the pain. The beach was deserted and we were rolling in the surf. I manage to work the hook out the front paw loose after bending it and forcing it out of my finger.

We were lucky and made our way home in the dark. Early Sunday morning I went back down to the beach to find the buoy to throw it away. I thought about the idiot fisherman who left this lure (I've always felt multiple treble hooks on any lure should be banned) because it was too much trouble to retrieve - 10 feet off the shore its less than three feet deep!

Paul Prentiss

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