Imagine, gentle readers, this. (triggering for dog attacks, btw)
There is a dog, big, a mutt with a decided bit of some kind of bull dog in him. For the most part the dog is just large and friendly to family but scary to non-family. Dog's been with the family for years and years. "Wouldn't hurt a fly" they tell the woman. "You just have to respect his boundaries."
And the woman is not afraid of dogs. This one is a little intimidating, sure. But he's kept fenced up at a different house and so she doesn't worry about it. Months go by and all is well.
Then the dog snips at the woman's child. The Kid isn't hurt, but she doesn't trust the dog after that. But the dog is still at another house, and all is well. She tells the Kid to stay away from the dog.
Then the dog is brought to where the woman and the kid live. And to get to anything, like say the bedrooms or the kitchen or the bathroom, you must get by the dog. This makes the woman nervous. She has a horrible dream that the dog eats and kills the Kid. Her family tells her she is ridiculous. Treats her like an idiot for even suggesting such a thing. The woman tries to put it out of her head. It's just a bad dream.
A week goes by. Everything seems okay. The woman is coming back from the bathroom one night and out of nowhere the dog lunges at her. Would have gone for her throat, but she screamed his name and he backed off. She's shaken. Scared. Her family tells her she's ridiculous. He wouldn't hurt her. It's her own fault anyways for showing fear. She asks that the dog be moved somewhere safer. She is told no.
In the middle of the night, she wakes up because she has to pee. She opens her bedroom door and there is the dog, blocking her doorway. She closes the door. Tries to hold it till her kidneys ache. Contemplates hanging her ass out of the window and peeing that way, but seriously she should just be able to use the fucking bathroom without being afraid of the dog.
So she cautiously steps over the dog. Success. She makes it to the bathroom. She pees. Her kidneys will live another day! She pokes her head out the bathroom door. The dog is just where she left it. Someone said that she might have startled the dog the last time, so she makes sure the dog sees and hears her. She's fine till about half way when the dog pounces. This time he takes a couple of chunks out of her leg and she has to keep her kid from trying to come out and save her.
Afterwards, she's still treated like an asshole because the dog bit her. It can't be as bad as she says, though her left leg is bruised and oozing where the teeth tore through her skirt. She must have done something to set him off. He was just being a dog, can't blame him for that.
And through this whole thing I am thinking that it sounds a whole fuck of a lot like the crap rape victims and domestic violence victims get. Not being believed when you say you're scared. Not being believed even after you're attacked. Must of done something to deserve it. Must have set it off. Worn a short skirt or burnt the dinner or shown fear. The rabid dog is a better analogy for rape than the mugging scenario that gets used so often.
(But bonus- after both attacks, even though what i wanted more than anything was a fucking cigarette to make myself stop shaking, I didn't smoke).