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Had an absolutely terrible evening of it yesterday.  I was in my mum's house (about 50 miles away from our own) beecause I had rehearsals and I got a phone call from a very panicked Emmet at about 6.50pm saying that the dogs were gone.  While we're at work, they are kept in the utility room, with access to the back garden so they can get in and out.  Our fence is about 6 foot hight, and the bolt on the gate is at about 5 foot (with no padlock, unfortunately but that has been remedied).  When Emmet eventually got to check after the drama finished, the gate was open and the bolt drawn across, so it definitely wasn't the dogs just digging under or jumping over.

Emmet was on his way home from work, about 5 mins away from the house when his brother in law, who lives beside us rang to say that the dogs were out running around the green,  He had tried to grab Hector but his collar came off and the 3 of them ran off.  Emmet tore back to the house, and when he got there his BIL was standing on the corner talking to a guy in a jeep, who turned out to be a farmer whose land they had been on, and he told Emmet that if he saw them again he was going to shoot them "because they're always worrying my sheep".  Emmet told him that they had never gotten out before, and the guy said "I've definitely seen that big brown one on my land before" and Emmet told him that that was impossible, because we only have him 3 weeks.  The farmer also told him that the dogs had attacked a child in the next housing estate down, which Emmet told him they just wouldn't do.  Anyway, he threatened to shoot them again, and Emmet just ran off to look for them.  He went into the next estate down, and a group of kids told him that the dogs had been in there, but had run back out and up the hill.  He went up that way, calling for them all the time, and while he was up there, hi BIL rang to say that Tink was after coming back to our house (I'm so proud of her for doing that).  Emmet legged it back down to the house, put her on the lead, and went back out to look for the other two.  He eventually found them about half a mile down the hill, in another estate.  At this stage, I was burning rubber trying to get home to help him look for them, and he rang me straightaway to tell me he had them., that he was bringing them home and was then going to try and find out about this child that they supposedly attacked, our main worry at this stage being that if they had done something (which we refused to believe) that we would be made to destroy them.

The same group of boys who had originally told him where the dogs were last seen showed him which house the boy who had been "attacked" lived in, and Emmet called up.  The dad answered the door, and when Emmet explained that they were our dogs who had gotten out and asked him had one of his kids been hurt he was like "Who, Ross?  Not at all, the little brown one jumped up on him and that was all.  They were lovely, especially the white one."  THANK GOD!  We knew that none of them would ever hurt a child, but some people would just see a dog jumping up on a child and immediately brand it as dangerous.

So, needless to say, the dogs got a severe dressing down and Emmet bought a massive padlock for the gate.  We also rang the police and explained what had happened and told them about the van acting suspiciously that morning, which I'm about to explain...

So, I left the house at 6.30 yesterday morning, and my windscreen was frosted over.  While I was scraping the ice off it, a white van with 3 men in it drove into the estate, drove around it very slowly, and when they passed by our corner, the one in the passenger seat was STARING over at me.  Now, there's only 23 houses in our estate, so that kind of behaviour, particularly at that hour of the morning (when it's still pitch dark) sticks out like a sore thumb, and when I drove out of the estate, they were coming back down from the top of the hill (which is a dead end, but with lots of big single houses up there), which made me even more suspicious.  Unfortunately, and I've been kicking myself about it since, I never bothered to ring Emmet to tell him.

So, our theory is that they came back during the day to break into the house, not realising that there were 3 large dogs happily snoozing away in the utility room.  They opened the gate, came into the side garden, and as soon as they made any noise, the 3 dogs came running out.  I reckon they just legged it back to their van and drove off, leaving the gate wide open and the dogs out.  Either that or they were trying to take the dogs themselves, and couldn't get near them - Tink and Boru are VERY wary of strange men and would have been barking and growling at them.

Whatever happened, we are absolutely blessed that we got them back safe and sound.  The whole way home until Emmet rang to say he had them I was bawling my eyes out thinking of them being shot, or hit by a car, or just plain getting lost and never coming home.  As I was leaving my mam's she said to me "Did Emmet check the house, was anything taken?" and I just said to her "Mam, I couldn't give a shit about the house, all I want is my dogs back."

Thank you God for looking after them.
 

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Wow what a horrible event and I am glad you all are okay!!!!! That type of think makes you afraid and mad all at the same time! Glad everyone is safe at home!
 

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OMG! I was freaking out just reading that! I can't even imagine how scared you both were.  #:-S  Thankfully this had a happy ending and all three are safe and back home. I would still be concerned about the suspicious van, that is kind of freaky. What did the police have to say about that? I know they probably can't do anything about it just yet, but are they going to increase patrols in your area?
So glad everyone and the dogs are alright!  :)
 

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Oh dear Lord, Eimear, I was holding my breath as I was reading this...First off, thank goodness all 3 are back home, that they didn't attack anyone...The thing about the farmer, yea we ran into that a couple times as well, the ex had to watch where he took the dogs for a run(didn't know at first)...I am soo thankful that Tink, Hector & Boru are home and safe...Like Lisa I would still be worried about those guys in the van..Obviously your babies scared them off, but it could have had a different ending...I know you have mentioned in the past worries about this with Gypsies I believe, think it was them or someone else? Give all your babies a big hug for me please, in a way, they did stop them from stealing anything :) Probably scared the crap out of them
 

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I am so glad they all made it home safely!!!  I can't imagine how terrified you were.  Especially since you were so far away and couldn't do anything till you got home.

Well if those guys in the van were up to robbing your house I bet they got a terrible surprise when they opened that gate.  Good boys Hector and Boru.  

Maybe you could take the dogs over to meet (well maybe just Tink :wink: ) that farmer, so he can see what wonderful sweet dogs boxers are.  He may be misidentifying them as some other dangerous breed.  but if he got a chance to meet them and get to know them a bit he might be less inclined to shoot first if they ever got out again.  He might even be willing to give you a ring to let you know they are out.

Best of luck with the trigger happy neighbor :x
 

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wow... you lucky dog you (no pun intended)... that was close, either way if if someone was breaking into your house or trying to take the pups... i'd be pretty pissed off
 

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Thank goodness they were safe and sound. I would have a talk with the farmer, I wouldn't trust anyone who says they will shoot a dog.
 
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wow, I would have had a heart attack!  you must have had some tired pups on your hands at least?  stupid bad men, i hope they got the seat of their pants ripped out by one of the babies!
 

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How scary that must have been for you and Emmet; so glad that everyone got home safe and sound.  Someone needs to give that farmer a good shaking and maybe a good kick in the backside.
 

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So glad to hear they all got home safe. If I didn't live soooo far away I would gladly kick that farmer for even assuming that any of those babies would do such a thing!
 

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That farmer sounds like a complete and utter ***hole :evil: . Some farmers still think they can behave like 18th century land-owning gentry "Get orf moi land!!!" - worrying his sheep my backside - they just love an excuse to get all trigger happy. Unfortunately we have a hunting tradition in France and all the 'real men' are out dressed as rambo on a sunday taking pops at anything that moves (just meters away from homes). On sunday i won't even walk V. or let him out on his own in the garden during the hunting season. They're all mad - and they think it's fine that their dags trample all over your garden.
That white van definitely sounds suspicious - hope if it was them that opened the gate that your dogs scared them good and proper - (maybe there's a thief walking round with a chunk out of his bum tonight :lol: ) and they'll never be back. We get gypsie thieving over here too - and when it's them the police just don't seem to want to bother :roll: . Anyhow - glad the dogs are home safe & sound :D .
 

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SOOO happy to hear that everyone is home safe & sound!  That is very scary!  
Hope that farmer doesn't give you any trouble, he sounds a little looney!
 

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WOW what a day!!! I would have loved to have seen the looks on the faces of those guys when 3 dogs came barreling out after them  8O might help them re - think a life of crime  :D Good job Tink for making your way home!! As far as the farmer goes, he sounds like a shoot first, ask questions later kind of guy, scary bunch of loonies out there!!! Soooo glad your story has a happy ending,  hug those babies for me  :D
 

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wow im glad your dogs are all back safe and sound without any problems and sorry you had to go through this. Someone was definitely looking out for them
 

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Discussion Starter #17
The sad thing is that the farmer would be perfectly within his rights to shoot them if they were on his land (and just anywhere on it at that, they wouldn't even have to be near his sheep).
 

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Wow, that's scarey!  Glad everyone is alright.  Good luck with your nerves!  I don't think I'd leave the  house for a week for fear the dogs would get out again.
 

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Honeyec\";p=\"74813 said:
The sad thing is that the farmer would be perfectly within his rights to shoot them if they were on his land (and just anywhere on it at that, they wouldn't even have to be near his sheep).
Yea, i remember when we were living in Northern Ireland, th ex was going to take to dogs out for a hike and asked a friend at work about walking in fields and such and was pretty much told the same thing..I actually thought they were yanking his chain until I got it verified as well....So we kept all walks and runs to the beach or designated trails..I'm just glad that they all are home & safe Eimear :)
 

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I'm so glad you got your babies back and I'm glad that stupid farmer didn't try to take matter into his own hands.

I also have to say that I could read pages of what you type because of the difference in wording, I love it.
 
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