Attack of the Killer Deer???
So, I’m walking my two dogs (wire haired fox terriers, or, as any terrier owner can tell you, “wired fox terrors”) yesterday and we go down to a running/biking/walking trail next to the railroad tracks fairly close to where we live. In fact, it’s the rail line I take to work every weekday. Just as we get to the trail, a mid-20’s lady jogger is going by, but stops in her tracks with a cry, “OMG, there’s a deer on the trail!!!”
I look down the trail and sure enough, there’s a young (based on size = small) deer sans antlers on the trail. Understand, this is not a great place for a deer to be and it is somewhat unusual, but not unheard of. Still, this young lady’s reaction is just as odd, as she actually seems to be scared of what she sees. She at first hesitates and then a guy jogs by in the same direction towards the deer, so she follows.
The deer, in true deer fashion, exits the trail into the side brush (we are in sort of a gorge so there is only about 20 or 30 yards on this side of the track before a steep side prohibits further easy progress, but a good 10-15 yards of that is trees and underbrush). The guy jogs on his merry way and quickly outdistances the young lady, and both have outdistanced me and my dogs who are following at a more leisurely pace.
Suddenly, I see the young lady stop, look around nervously, and start walking quickly back towards me. I’m thinking, “She must have gone as far as she wants to in that direction.”
Alas, as she approaches me, she instead says, “That deer scares me!”
Now, I’m a city-slicker myself, but I’ve hunted deer (and other critters as well). But most people, I would have thought, would understand/know that you will be hard pressed to find a more timid creature on God’s green earth than a deer of any of the various species. Unless you try to separate two males battling over a female (which would be incredibly stupid, and highly unlikely that they’d hang around fighting once they say you), you are as likely to be hurt by a deer as you are to be hurt by a pillow in a pillow fight. Generally, the worse they can do is eat your roses. The maximum damage will occur when a car hits them. Otherwise…
What I said, as I continue in the same direction with my dogs, is a benign, “Don’t worry, that deer is more scared of you than you are of him.” I had to assure her twice with those words as she walked briefly with me and my dogs past the deer that was, indeed, standing in the woods off to the side, not exactly looking like a zombie ready for attack. Once past the killer deer, she took off with an unusual alacrity.
What I’m thinking is, “Glory! What are they teachin’ these kids these days? Doesn’t she know about the timidity of deer? How can she not know? Is this another product of our public school system? I mean, the whole premise of Bambi is that deer are harmless creatures being cruelly hunted down by evil men who should all be executed for inflicting such pain and suffering on the glorious woodland, yada, yada, yada….”
I hope I’m not being too unkind, but this just struck me as an absurd lack of knowledge in someone who should have known better, if not from personal experience, at least from PBS Nature programs!
I mean, what was she expecting, something like this(?):