Sydney Morning Herald Saturday 5 January 2005



Author: With Kate Askew


Dog of a day


While the rest of the country was glued to the set and the mysteries of Wisteria Lane in Desperate Housewives, it was the lane at Cranbrook that drew the attention of the Leckie household earlier this week. The first day of school at Bellevue Hill's Cranbrook School led to an unfortunate series of events for one little pooch, understood to be a sausage dog, which came off second best after a bingle with Skye Leckie's vehicle.


Some eastern suburbs residents will be familiar with the four-wheel-drive, given it can sometimes be spotted, with hazard lights blazing, parked in the transit lane in front of Woolworths on New South Head Road while the Cranbrook mum-of-two ducks in for some shopping.


The poor pooch in question was in pursuit of a cat and met an untimely end when it ran under the car.


After first asking for the Seven Network's help in dealing with Sauce's inquiry about the dreadful event (she's not an employee, but her husband David is the bloke behind the Australian Open/Home and Away/ Desperate Housewives run which has engineered a change in fortunes at the network), a dismayed Leckie then telephoned to explain the unfortunate circumstances.


Cranbrook School, Leckie explained, will deal with the event and will no doubt discuss it with parents.


Clearly, small dogs, small children and big cars do not mix.


"I feel very sorry for everyone on this," Pedestrian Council of Australia's often outspoken chief, Harold Scruby, who is acquainted with Leckie, told Sauce. "But perhaps there are some lessons to be learned.


"I'm sympathetic to the owners and I'm sympathetic to Skye," he says. "Dogs should be on leashes ... I can't see how it can be Skye's fault. It serves as a reminder to us all that dogs that run out and into traffic - apart from the hurt it causes their owners - can cause accidents."


Scruby cites a government ruling which says that dogs should be under the control of a competent person. "I would say to parents that it's probably best not to have the child running dogs close to the road if they're not 10 or over."

© This work is copyright and is reproduced under licence from John Fairfax Holdings Limited