True story: 11 years ago this Halloween, our lab Maggie went out for her first round of trick-or-treating. As with all labs, she was, at this age, full of boundless energy and love for people, adventure and food. Halloween was the perfect storm of all three ingredients; people everywhere, an evening walk to new environments and candy everywhere her nose led her. At a little over two years of age, her strength was also a force to be reckoned with, particularly to someone not accustomed to it.
On this evening, our friend Chad volunteered to try to harness Maggie as he led the kids door to door. He pulled valiantly at her leash as she lunged this way and that in an effort to befriend or eat anything she could reach. Chad wisely kept her down the on the sidewalk as the gaggle of kids ran to each door to collect their just rewards. After a few houses, however, Maggie determined that the real action was up at the doorsteps with the kids, not stuck back on the sidewalk with Chad. Refusing to be denied what was obviously the greatest pleasure her mind could envision, she jumped, twisted, pulled and flat out willed her way out of her collar. Realizing she was free, she bolted before Chad could grab her.
Meanwhile, much to her delight, a kindly elderly neighbor was opening the door for our group of kids to hand out Snickers and other sugary treats. Maggie interpreted this open door as a grand welcoming gesture and sprinted towards it. After plowing through the kids assembled on the step, she nearly knocked over the poor lady inside and entered the house. By now, she was completely overcome with excitement at her good fortune. She quickly began running laps around her new house, entering the kitchen, living room, hallway and any other place not protected by a closed door. At one point she even jumped up on the couch to greet the visibly shocked gentleman watching television with kisses. By this time, Chad had regained his composure enough to realize what was happening and headed to the house to try to contain the chaos that Hurricane Maggie was wreaking. Seeing Chad rushing towards her, Maggie's game had just moved from "Oh My God, this is so much fun!" to "THIS IS THE GREATEST DAY OF MY LIFE!!!". With Chad giving chase, the laps around the stranger's house continued for several more minutes.
Chad was eventually able to dive on top of her and get her back in her leash. Luckily, and much to the credit of the poor victims of this home invasion, all red-faced apologies were dismissed as unnecessary as they had previously owned a lab and fully understood how such an event could occur. Chad, on the other hand, decided that Maggie had had enough trick-or-treating for the evening and returned her home to hand out candy with KT and I instead.