There’s nothing else for it, all dogs must die…

I had meant, this morning, to review the latest incarnation of my favourite running shoes. But as they’re only cosmetically different from the previous version, I figure that they can wait until tomorrow: largely because I have other things on my mind, and, indeed, other things on my shoes.

Yes folks, my pooch-paranoia has now reached epic proportions, as I have yet again brought home dog plop from my morning run.

Now, I know there’s a lot of dog lovers out there who will beg to differ, but really, these things have got to go.

Every time I go for a fartlek session around my local football pitch, I’ve got stupid mutts dancing around my ankles and getting under my feet – and very few dog owners seem to see this as a problem. In fact, you can pretty much see them thinking: ‘Cool! Butch has found something to play with! Guess I don’t have to throw this stupid stick for a while…”

Even when I head for the beach, I can’t get away from dumb animals, and their dogs. Plunging through the sand dunes, I’m constantly surprising Dobermanns and German Shepherds (why is it so easy to surprise these things? I thought they were meant to have great hearing?) with predictably terrifying results.

The narrow paths through the dunes are also littered with dog poo. And I guess the owners are thinking: “Well, what can be wrong with my dog doing it on the beach?”

Well, what’s wrong with it is that people like me who go out looking for a wholesome, life-affirming exercise experience are spending way too much time either dodging the dog crap or scraping it off their overpriced trail shoes. And those soles are designed to trap stuff too.

One day, and one day soon at that, you will read a news report saying that a crazed runner has been arrested for rubbing a dog-owners nose in a small, steaming pile of recycled Pedigree Chum. Without first removing it from his shoe. Or, indeed, without first removing the shoe from his foot…

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