la journee mondiale de l'alimentation

une plaie

golden retriever, injured, accident, star pillow, books, nightstand, argile, plaie, heal (c) Kristin Espinasse,
Smokey and his new silver cheek. Our vet stapled Smokey back together: his cheek and upper jaw were mended and several more staples were used to patch up his throat after a couple of attack dogs wandered into our yard on Friday. Read on, in today's story column just below.

une plaie (play) noun, feminine

    : wound

une plaie béante = open/gaping/wide open wound

Audio File and Example Sentence: Download MP3 or Download Wav file

Please help translate the following quote (in the comments box). Merci!

Le trafic de faux médicaments dans les pays en voie de développement est une plaie béante planétaire. -Bloob

A Day in a French Life... by Kristin Espinasse


(Dear Friends, I will spare you of unnecessary heartbreak and share with you, now, the bright ending to today's story: our puppy is home, safe, and recuperating. As the veterinarian said, on Friday, "normalement, il doit s'en sortir."  ("It looks like he's going to make it.")


*   *   *

It feels as if weeks have passed since the accident; in reality, only three days ago our puppy was mauled by two attack dogs.

It happened on Friday, just before five in the afternoon. I was on my way out the door when Jean-Marc called down, from his office upstairs.

"Fais rentrer Braise et Smokey avant de partir*...." he said. My brain processed the bits of information: Braise, Smokey... outside? I had not realized our dogs were déhors.*

We had had an unexpected visit from a friend, just minutes before... the dogs must have slipped out then. During the brief moment of inattention, Mother dog and son wandered over to the edge of the property, where two stocky chiens* were roaming -- having escaped, we would later learn, from their fenced yard some five kilometers away....

I had been upstairs folding clothes when I heard the excited aboiements*... which I thought to be coming from the field, where hunting season is underway; of the barking, I remember thinking: "les chiens de chasse ont dû trouver leur proie".*

Little did I know that the prey was our two-month old golden retriever and that these were not the hunters' dogs.

Just as soon as Jean-Marc had spoken, I ran out the door, calling after our dogs.
Braise! Smokey! B R A I S E: il est où Smokey?!*

I quickly ran over to the field and saw Braise excitedly pacing back and forth, barking and crying. I followed her over to the edge of our property, to where the land drops off a few feet -- level with the brook below. That is when my eyes locked on our lifeless pup.

I automatically turned away, horrified, having seen our young dog lying on his side, stiff as death.
"Il est mort!"* I screamed, seeing blood streaming.

Innocence Downed
Our playful puppy had been brought down by something savage. Was it the pack of dogs that I had heard earlier? Or was it a hunter's bullet? Could a wild boar or a renard* have attacked? What -- or who -- did this to our sweet puppy?

I ran toward the house screaming for my husband, but the Mistral wind muffled my cries.

Not long after, Jean-Marc, having heard shouting, was by my side.
"Qu'est-ce qui se passe! Il est où?! Il est où Smokey?!"*
"Il est mort!"*

I pointed to the edge of the property line and Jean-Marc took off, following les taches de sang* which began at the end of our arrière-cour.*

"Non!" He shouted, on seeing our pup. "Ce n'est pas possible. Ce n'est pas possible!"*

I watched, heartsick and immobile, as Jean-Marc reached down to collect our puppy off the ground.

"I can't look. I don't want to see!" I said as my husband approached.

"Il est toujours vivant!"* Jean-Marc said -- for at that very moment... a soft beating could be felt from within the little furry body that hung in my husband's arms.

At that point I could bring myself to look... beyond the crimson jaw and neck where the dogs had aimed to kill.

Smokey's tongue hung from the side of his mouth, which was full of fresh blood. Along with his tongue, he was entirely immobile...

...except, we soon discovered, for his lovely chocolate brown eyes, which followed, calmly, the figures hovering above him. Smokey's chocolate eyes looked left, then right. As he lay cradled in solid arms, there, above him, two frightened faces released tears of hope as they looked down at their lucky dog.

*   *   *

Read an update of the story, here. More updates continue in the archives.

Comments & messages to Smokey welcome. Our puppy loves to hear our voices read your messages. It does seem to comfort him! Meantime, I'll continue to sing him Amazing Grace... "that saved *an amazing dog* like me!" (he loves that one too!)

Post note: I won't mention which breed of dog attacked our puppy. The important thing to remember, as my mom, Jules, always says, is that dogs are animals (though some like to think of them as "children") : they have their instincts and we must always remember that -- and be aware of the dangers whether it is our dog or another's.

French Vocabulary

Fais rentrer Braise et Smokey avant de partir = bring in Braise and Smokey before you leave; dehors = outside; le chien (m) = dog; un aboiement (m) = barking; les chiens de chasse ont dû trouver leurproie = the hunting dogs have found their prey; il est où where is he?; il est mort = he is dead; le renard (m) = fox; Qu'est-ce qui se passe! Il est où?! Il est où Smokey? = what's happening? Where's Smokey?; les taches (f) de sang = spots of blood; une arrière-cours (f) = backyard; Ce n'est pas possible = it can't be; il est toujours vivant! = he is still alive!



painted shop sign, books, reading, candlelight, awning, Hyérès France (c) Kristin Espinasse,
A sign outside a book shop in the old town of Hyérès. Hundreds more photos over at my private photo journal.


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Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Marika Ujvari

My thoughts are with you Kristin and hope for a complete recovery for poor, little Smokey. What a traumatic experience it must have been for the little guy, and you also. Keep us posted, we are pulling for you.


Ah, Smokey, Smokey, I'm so glad you are still with us! I know the little guy is resilient, Kristin. My good thoughts go out to you all as you heal from this scary episode. Thank goodness for the happy ending. You just go on singing to that Lucky Fella - I'm humming along with you! Amazing Grace...


Dearest, sweetest Smokey,

What you have been through, I can't even imagine. You are very brave and strong. If you weren't, we would not still have you here with us. Please rest and heal. Your mother, your family and your friends want to see you back on your paws real soon. Even though this event will haunt you, remember that the world has much more love in it than hate. Most of that love goes out to you and your family today.


Without researching a translation for:
"Le trafic de faux médicaments dans les pays en voie de développement est une plaie béante planétaire."

I'd guess it says:
"The traffic of false medicine in the country (countries?) shows the development of a wound that is out of this world."

Margaret Dennis

Dear Smokey and family,

You poor sweet thing. Just about two weeks ago when we were there, I cuddled one of your sisters. I am sending you a big cuddle too. You are a brave little boy and your loving mother (canine and human) will nurse you back to health. I am looking forward to pictures of you romping through the vineyards.

renee lerner

I am so happy to hear that Smokey is on the road to recovery. He's a tough little guy with a big heart and you were fortunate to have a vet that is taking such good care of him. With your love, in time, I know Smokey will get over this traumatic experience.
Renée Lerner

Bill in St. Paul

Poor Smokey, hang in there, guy. We need you in this world.

This brought bad the terrible memories of losing pet rabbits to dogs running loose and to a wild raccoon. They didn't make it, but you will, Smokey!


Thank you, everyone, for your warmth and kind words! Smokey is sleeping (under our bed) at the moment, but when he wakes up I will give him his messages!

Bill: you mentionned losing pet rabbits to dogs. This was one of my first thoughts: that the hunters, or dogs, took him for a rabbit (he is so fluffy -- and currently the same size!). Like you, I've had the misfortune and shock of finding a pet rabbit dead in the back yard. Smokey, when I found him, looked the same. This is why I feared the worst.

Marianne Giordano

When I read the news this morning I was deeply saddened. An innocent pup against such a horror.... Goldens are loving and trusting dogs, and I hope that will not lessen his trust for other dogs. And, poor Briese...watching that all unfold. My sister just had to put her Golden Boy Boomer to rest last night. He was such a great soul.....So sad today for losing him....but, so happy for Smokey to be so very fortunate.
Wishing Smokey a speedy and thorough recovery...
Warmest Regards,
Marianne Giordano


Thank goodness he is ok:)

Leah Martin

I'm so sorry to hear about Smokey and the trauma your family experienced. I am so glad that he's doing much better and as another dog lover, Cinnamon, my 3 year old Pembroke Welsh Corgi and I wish Smokey all the best with his recovery.


Oh, little Smokey! I'm so sorry you had to go through what you have. I am a dog lover and your kind (golden) is my favorite of all! :) I hope that God's gracious hand will heal your sweet little face and that this will just make you even stronger!

I just lost my baby girl, Daisy, (also a golden) in June and I can't even express how bad my heart still hurts. I really enjoy receiving the word-of-the-day, and especially now since I get to see yours and your mommy's sweet faces! :) Many blessings to you and your family!

Adrienne from Indiana

Jules Greer

My Darling Kristi & all of her friends at FWAD,

I received "the phone call" from Kristi a couple of days ago when this unfortunate accident happened. Kristi was the child that never opened her heart to animals, when we had our little orphan dog Benji I believe Kristi was jealous because he was always on my lap. I remember only a few years ago when I was visiting that I approached Kristi about letting the kids have a dog - Max must have been around eleven at the time and Max and I would secretly plan our strategy (sp?) each night on how to overcome Kristi's resistance. I used guilt, "How could you let a boy grow up and not know the companionship of having a dog for a best friend." As you all know we won the battle and shortly after I left that autumn Braise came into their lives. Kristi soon experienced the joy of unconditional love that dogs are famous for, and her heart began to open. The lessons learned on Kristi's journey have enriched all of us, this has been a difficult time for Kristi. When she told me she was lying in bed with Smokey on her chest singing "Amazing Grace" to him ... I was instantly with her in my heart. How brave of you Kristi to open your intermost thoughts and feelings to all of us, to let us share in your true circumstances as life touches you in all of it's greatness.

As always, I am so proud of you...


MOM - Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Diane Scott

What brutes! How dreadful for you all! But a secret revealed: Dogs have nine lives, too. They don't know it because the cats, sly things, won't tell. But I heard my two felines whispering this very thing the other day when they thought no one was listening:-)


I am happy that Smokey is ok. I lost a kitty to a pack of dogs, I was heartbroken.

Katie, Cannes

My heart goes out to little Smokey, such sweet playfulness and tail-wagging innocence brought down by an unprovoked attack. It's very sad indeed that he came to experience such horror, albeit brief, in his tender little life. Not to mention the heart-crushing sadness this must have been for you and your family.

1000 healing kisses for the little bundle, I hope that he pulls through okay.

And lastly, if the dogs that made the attack are not classed as Category 1 then I would be interested to know what breed they are, juste pour savoir.

Warm wishes.

Shannon, Alexandria, VA

What a relief Smokey is okay and recovering!!! He's such a cute little guy. I'm sure he'll be as right as rain sooner than you know it!

Smokey - I'm sending you all sorts of loving vibes and a gentle pat on the head from across the ocean. :) Get better soon! :)


Everyone has already, so eloquently said what is in my heart. Jules inspirational LOVE story is so dear. As mother's, (yes - even to puppies & kitties it seems), we are a nurturing group. Braise, especially knows what to do and when to do it. So obviously do you Kristin. Sweet Smokey is healing in every way! And quickly. God bless! Hugs and kisses all around.


The important thing is il doit s'en sortir! He will, I am sure. : ) Please don't forget to keep us posted of his progress. We'll love to see pictures of him as he gets better.
As for the translation, here is my try:
The trafficking of fake medicine in developing countries is an open wound for the world.


I am typing through tears. So glad the puppy prognosis is good. I'll just add my sincere but slightly off key voice to the chorus of Amazing Grace for Smokey. And just as an aside how do you hide those great big antibiotic pills for a French puppy to swallow? Our goldens have liked them in bread and peanut butter, but rumour has it that PB isn't such a common commodity there. Best wishes to you all,

Nancy L.

Oh Kristin, what a frightening experience. As a member of a Greyhound rescue group (with 2 greyhounds of our own) we periodically hear about an attack upon greys on our Group Chatboard. Greyhounds by nature are very docile, skittish & thin skinned and, although large in size, they are easy prey for more agressive dogs. Your mother, as always, is correct, tho. My mother-in-law has frequently reminded us over the years that 'dogs are animals, after all'and "do not think like us" no matter how well we think we understand their motivations. I am so glad to hear the happy ending to little Smokey's story and will send up a little prayer to St. Francis that he continues to improve and is safe from harm. Our loving bisous to Smokey!

Elizabeth Manny

I am so glad to hear Smokey is OK now. Wishing him lots of love and a speedy recovery.


When I first started to read this, tears were instantly forming, but then I remembered the picture of Smokey's silver patch from the staples. I read on through those tears. Everyone has already, so eloquently said what is in my heart. Jules inspirational LOVE story is so dear. As mother's, (yes - even to puppies & kittiens it seems), we are a nurturing group. Braise, especially knows what to do and when to do it. So obviously do you Kristin. Sweet Smokey is healing in every way! And quickly. God bless! Hugs and kisses all around.


Dear Kristin,
Please smother sweet little Smokey in slobbery kisses for me. Love heals all and he has no shortage of that - in him or embracing him.
xox Jeanne LaCasse

Dixie (4 yrs old, Atlanta, GA)

Dearest Smokey and Braise,

I know that the attack will add to your list of instinctual threats you will now always be concerned about.

However, the pain really does go away since you have a family, like I do, that loves you and gives you lots of kisses, hugs, and snuggles.

Wishing a quick recovery and lots of good play and runs,
Dixie (I was rescued as a wandering puppy 2 weeks after Katrina in New Orleans)


Querida Kristi,
Now I want to double thank you for answering my email in the middle of all this situation... OMG! What a terrible feeling! But I am happy we are looking at a happy end. What a brave puppy Smokey is!
Sending healing thoughts to Smokey and all of your family to recover from such an intense experience.


Oh, Kristi, how frightening! I'm so glad Smokey is okay and recouping. Give the little guy a big pet on the head from us!!


Oh, le pauvre petit! How horrifying! The idea of a defenseless little pup being attacked is so upsetting. I can't even imagine how you must have felt seeing him lying there...

Wishing the poor baby a speedy recovery! I know you will be giving him lots of TLC.

Of course I and all your other readers will be waiting anxiously for continued news of his "rétablissement".

L'art de la médecine consiste à distraire le malade pendant que la nature le guérit. (Voltaire)
(The art of medicine consists of amusing the patient while nature heals him.)

Tami (Austin, TX)

Oh, Smokey and family! What a horrifying experience. I'm praying to the Lord for healing and that this incident will not affect the little guy in the future. It's an awful, helpless situation, but he's been spared for a reason. There are plans for your little life, Smokey! Grand plans. :)

Heather in Dallas

Darling little Smokey- I was so worried about you. I cried when reading the story of your attack. I am relieved to learn that you will recover, and am glad you have such a great dogmom and a warm and loving peoplemom.

Sending all the healing vibes we can muster


I do not normally comment but have enjoyed your posts for quite some time now. I am so glad the puppy is okay and doing well.

I love the comments you have received - just wonderful! Reading your post, we all felt horrified and then relieved. Again, so very glad he is on the mends. I can only imagine the love this puppy must be getting but, from all the comments, the love we are all sending him from around the world! A neat thought!



Thanks Kristi for telling us that Smokey is okay first. How is Braise? Where was she during the attack? So very glad that Smokey is going to be all right, what a terrible adventure for him. I'm glad that everyone is okay. P.S. I love your Mom-she sends the sweetest comments to your writing!

georgie and gordy

We are so very glad you are going to be all right! Ooh how you must ache all over.
Be careful around all other dogs. Kristin is right that any breed can attack. Even standard poodles-however we are very friendly and only want to play or nap. Our person wishes she could send you a get well package, but postage from the U.S. to your home is expensive.


Thank heavens Smokey will be OK. My heart goes out to him as well as his mother, and you and your husband, his "other" parents. As with other children, puppies require constant attention. You were forunate to have seen that with a happy ending. I hope to return to France before too long and see a grown up Smokey. Thank you for sharing your escapades with us.
Maxine Mueller-Houston


Merci encore for all the love and kindness! Smokey and family... we're drinking it up!

To answer a couple of questions:

Bev: re the antibiotics -- ours are tiny. That said, after mixing them into the puppy pâté (the kind that comes in a can)... I am not sure Smokey is getting the right dose. He doesn't eat all of the food (his mouth is still swollen and he can feel what he's eating... a lot of it drivels out of his mouth. So, no--we don't have those big pills to worry about (just the worry that he is taking in the small ones!).

Martina: thanks for asking about Braise. She is the only one that knows exactly what happened. I remember looking into her big brown eyes and telling her that it must have been an awful thing to witness, but that she was a brave mama for chasing away the dogs!

Now that Smokey has replaced his puppy breath with "dried blood breath", Braise is acting a little strange around him. I would have expected her to be more of a mother hen. Instead, it is best to sympathize with her reaction and, again, remember that she has her own instincts.

Sandra in Austin, Texas

How terrifying for all of you! Such things should not happen to the sweetest among us! I love your daily emails which arrive promptly each morning, the beautiful pictures and your enchanting commentary on life in France. Best wishes for a full recovery for you all~mentally and physically.

Susan in Bozeman, Montana

Be brave little Smokey, the world loves you and is cheering you on to good health and a long and loving life!

Lisa in Montclair, NJ

I was so sorry to read about Smokey's awful ordeal but am relieved for you all that he is on the mend. He is such a brave little chap and I wish him a speedy recovery. Hugs to sweet Braise too.

Kristine, dallas

Praise God, and Braise, that it was not worse. I am so glad to know the healing has begun. Please give lots of kisses and pats to Smokey and Mama Braise.


I write with tears in my eyes to wish you all a speedy recovery. My heart seems to stop whenever I read or hear something like this, even though it is 38 years since I faced a similar event. We had a complete and speedy recovery then, and I'm sure with all the love and prayers and various renditions of Amazing Grace, Smokey will soom be frolicking with you again.

Marianne Rankin

Smokey, I wish you a speedy recovery. Braise, I hope the nightmare of watching your son being mauled will fade with time.

To everyone: Be aware that dogs who will attack other dogs might also attack humans, especially children. Do whatever you can to protect people/children from animals. In our town, fences aren't allowed (regarded as un-neighborly), but dogs must be leashed. So if you notice or hear any unleashed dogs, make sure everyone is inside or somewhere out of harm's way.

So glad this story had a happy ending.


Make that "soon be". Blame the typo on the watery eyes.

Jules Greer


I just received another phone call from Kristi, giving me more detail of exactly what was going on while she had SMOKEY lying on her her heart while she was singing and praying away for him. I told her to go directly to her computer and open a new file on BRAISE, SMOKEY AND THE GANG, because she refused my suggestion to write in more detail what she was sharing with me on the phone...on FWAD...she doesn't want to be too dramatic with her readers. But you all know me well enough to know I can't keep a little snippet of her story from you. Appartently she had on her VICTORY PAJAMAS which she gifted to herself after her coo (sp) in Paris at the American Library. As you who have been following her for awhile must know - Kristi used to have all kinds of phobia's (sp?) about everything, God forbid a dog in the bed!!! To hear her on the phone a moment ago going on and on about the smells of a ravished dog, the dirt, dare I mention caked blood on his little paws and cheek----add to all of that Kristi's feelings of joy as you glanced down to the trail of tears on her new p.j.'s. Then she told me she held on to that moment, knowing she was witnessing her own strenght. I know all of this may sound a little dramatic, but I am hoping Kristi will open that new 'file' and start recording some of her more private feelings concerning "THE GANG" that we may all share in someday in the future. You know MOM, always trying to direct my kids lives aft3er all of there years.



Denise L. in the PNW

Oh le pauvre bebe, Smokey! Oh Mumma Braise! Kristi and J-M - what a horrible thing. I am so, so glad Smokey is on the mend and will recover. I, too, would probably not have been able to look at Smokey while he was down.

Kristi, Braise will come around. Smokey will recover, and then Braise will be back. Slightly different, peut-etre, but back.

I knew something was amiss. I am so glad you are all on the road to recovery.



Best wishes and sighs of relief from me and my Pomeranian Sunflower to brave little Smokey and Braise! What a terrible ordeal--he must be a strong pup who has every intention in the world of sticking around for a very long time!

P.S. My previous Pom had to have a gigantic cancerous tumor removed from her back and was stapled from neck to tail. We called her FrankenPom for a while...

Karen from Phoenix, AZ

I was crying when I read your story, not just because Smokey was hurt but also because he is okay. I know it was a hard ordeal, but so happy it turned out well. Cuddling him and singing to him will help him heal so much faster, Braise needs some cuddling too. Just think of the ordeal of seeing her baby attacked. Love to all!

Simonette Lenik

If Smokey is having trouble eating, you may need to acquire a syringe (without any needle of course), suck up the mushy food and help little Smokey eat by gently inserting the syringe into his mouth, towards the back of the tongue, with little bits of food. Consult your vet on this, but it is a way to be sure he has his nourishment. I will keep him, Braise and all of you in my prayers for a complete recovery, physical and psychological. May God Bless you and give you Strength to do what is necessary.
Love to all, Simonette from Michigan

Simonette Lenik

Important words left out of last comment--
gently PUSH the food through the syringe into his mouth. Sorry.


You are a very lucky dog. It may not seem that way now as you recover, but Braise stood by you and Kristin and Jean-Marc came to your rescue. Having visited you in late September I could see the entire scene play out when reading Kristin's post! My parents had a Springer Spaniel named Maggie who survived a Javelina (wild boar) attack in Prescott, AZ. It took a lot of loving care but she pulled through as I know you will.


The traffic in counterfeit medicines in developing countries is a worldwide gaping wound.


Thank God he is safe. What an experience!

Love to all,



Oh that poor pup. Too nerve-wracked to read the whole story right now. Though I am relieved Smokey is OK. Be prepared, of course, for post-traumatic behavior. I was attacked by dogs when little & though I went on to have pups of my own, I've never gotten over the heart-in-mouth moments when a dog gets off the leash around me. It just happened the other day & the dog was decidedly NOT friendly.

Oh, I am sorry.


Oh, poor sweet baby! I am so sorry. Thank God you found him when you did. Can dogs take arnica? I remember when we lived in France, neighbors were always offering arnica for my young boys when they had injuries. I hope he heals quickly and has no lasting effects from the attack.


I am so sorry to hear about the attack on your poor sweet little puppy. :-( I can't imagine what you, Jean-Marc, and Braise went through, but I'm thankful Smokey ended up surviving the ordeal. It just hurts my heart to think of innocent baby animals being harmed! I know your love and care will be just the right medicine, Kristin! I'll keep all of you in my prayers.

Jeannie Leighton

Dearest Smokey,
So brave, so strong! I cup my hands around your jaws and send healing energy throughout your tired body. Mama Kirsten will feed you, Mama Braise will take care of you, and your many aunts and uncles around the world will pray for your recovery.

Jeannie in the northcentral high desert hills of Arizona

Beau and Karen

Dear Smokey,

I am so sorry to hear about your horrible accident! I wish you a speedy recovery and so do my owners. I have had some injuries (I cut my paw once jumping and running through the fields) but I have recovery nicely from it!
J'espère que tu vas vite t'en remettre!!

Beau Winston Stonebridge(I'm a 2 year old Llewellin Setter.)


I am so glad Smokey will be alright. I had a very similar occurance many years ago with a full grown Golden. His playmate, a German Shorthair came to the rescue or more damage would have been done. Emotionally all both Smokey and Braise need right now is lots of love and soft pets and nose kisses.



Thank you for taking the time to share this with us all, and as with your other many subscribers, I hope Smokey gets well soon!

To add my tuppence to the translation, I'd say:
The trafficking of counterfeit medicines in developing countries is a gaping planetary wound.

Get well soon Smokey, and best wishes,




Thank you for sharing this story. I gave my golden (Koah) an extra hug this morning after reading about what happened to Smokey. Tell him we are sending hugs all the way from california! I plan to visit france again next year for a few months, maybe I'll be able to meet this brave little guy in person someday. :)

Ashley and Koah

Stacy Lund

My heart truly goes out to you, Kristi, Smokey, Braise and family...

What a terrifying and sad event in your lives. Poor dear Smokey, so grateful he has survived...with all the love and grace he is given, he will recover and thrive.

I look at my new puppy, Blossom, who was testing me with her fire and mischief this weekend and my nearly 16 year old angel-terrier, Sweet Pea, who I am blessed by each day with, and am grateful they are healthy and whole.

Living this farm life and raising many animals the last twelve years, I have experienced great joy and sorrow. Thankful to say the sorrows do not stay for long and the joy lives on. I wish this for your family.

Much Love, Stacy

Karen Brown

The moment I brought home my little puppy from the shelter, I became a lover of all dogs. And because my puppy survived being hit by a car I can relate to the anguish a "mommy" goes through at a time like that. What joy that our puppies survived! Et voila, my puppy is now 14 years young! I love her even more! Give Smokey a little squeeze from me!


oh the poor thing! I still don't understand why two adult grown dogs would attack one single puppy though.. something not right in those doggy peabrains. My in-laws small dog was severly attacked a few years ago. Growing up, I was never afraid of dogs, even though I did get bit once, it never really crossed my mind that dogs could be very vicious.


Many prayers are being sent your way! Dieu vous bénisse!


I am so glad that Smokey is doing well, thank goodness he and his mum are together to get throught this time. I recently witnessed a dog attack, so I know how traumatic and terrible the results can be. My thoughts are with you all.

Christine Jackson

Oh no! Thank you for sharing the outcome first! I also loved the fact that you used a lot of French phrases in this article(as I am still a beginning French learner, I am often wondering what the French equivalents are when you write English exclamations)!

So very happy to hear that Smokey is okay now (well relatively). Maybe Braise is afraid of the vet smell on Smokey's mouth?

Speedy recovery to all of you!



Kristin, I know too well what you've been going through, and I'm so happy to know dear Smokey is doing well. Four years ago, I adopted a sweet little two-year-old Coton named (rightly) "Angel." She was just getting used to walking in the neighborhood with me and beginning to enjoy it when she was/we were attacked by two stray pit bulls scarcely three blocks from our house. I'll edit out the horrible details in favor of the good news: she recovered from her injuries and got over the incident much quicker and more thoroughly than I did. These remarkable creatures are gifts to all of us and have much to teach us.

Angel is a heavy-duty kisser, so I know if she were there with you, she'd be bestowing mille baisers on both of you. Please let Smokey know.

Fred Caswell

Chere Kristi, more than any words that could possibly be added to the above, if you could see the tears that ran down my cheeks,and remain there, you would know how my heart reacted in sympathy for all -- especially for you.

I actually ache, wanting so much to talk with you. So much to share and fearing much will not be.

Just back late last night. Hope you get to read this. Comme toujours --- Fred

From what I've been told, my talk in church was a coup aussi!

Must add: is the star with "hope" on it what I hope it is? Do you remember writing back when I commented on your intimate stories were my favorites and said that, by extension, perhaps others would like that style also? Another coup for Fred?

Catherine, Seattle, WA

I am completely in tears for little Smokey. I have been following their birth and first months. Smokey is one strong little guy and he will make a complete recovery. I am sure.

My thoughts and prayers are with you Smokey.

Jill Brackstone

Oh, thank God Smokey is alright.
I've followed this story from the time Blaise and her boyfriend went galavanting around Marseilles, when you and your husband were desperately trying to find them both and fearing the worst.
The "happy event" and the six wonderful pups - and now this.
Puppy prayers on their way:-)
Jill (friend of Kirk and Anne Woodyard)

Sheila Bosworth Lemann

I won't forget the image you described, of the wounded Smokey's brown eyes focused trustingly on the faces of his rescuers. Saint Francois d' Assise, priez pour le brave chien, and pour sa famille.
Meilleurs voeux.

-Sheila Bosworth lemann

Leisa Smith

Bless you all! Gentle, soft hugs to Smokey, and support to the entire family. Please keep us posted, as I know you will with your heartfelt writings of such clarity. With love from Australia.


You've had a traumatic experience, and are lucky to have survived. I'm sure that Braise will get over it, but she might feel that she did not do enough to protect you. Give her time.
Kristi and family,
You might become gun shy and not let Smokey out unattended, but as he gets older, he will be able to care for himself much better and with Braise and Smokey together, they should be able to care for each other.
Glad that all has turned out OK and give Smokey a hug and kiss from me.

nadine goodban

i am reminded - avec bien des larmes - the loss of my darling Poupouche.
But do think ahead, Kristin. Après la pluie, le beau temps... You need to lift your own spirit and know that this awful and so very painful period will pass. Do trust the Almighty.
bises, nadine


Must join the deluge of empathetic love and relief, not least because a dear friend lost her beloved 3 yr old doggirl in a river just days ago. Smokey will pull through, and with the adoring support of his family, will become a strong and brave-as-possible big boy. My little Pixel was roughed up as a puppy; she remains afraid of large darkhaired dogs, yet has developed excellent radar for which dogs are good natured and which are best to avoid. Smokey will mature wisely too! As for Braise, of course he smells all vet-y too, as well as being barely recognizable to her in his wounded state. She is also a very young mommy! Pixel wants me to add her total understanding and warmest licks, so here they are! Hugs and cuddles to all and sundry -- may the shock, horror and pain fade fast and relief, wonder and gratitude rule instead!

Barbara Andolsek Paintings

Dearest Kristi, as Jules says, you grow stonger and stonger every day. YOU are amazing... and loved by many, many mothers all around this wee little world of ours. Our thoughts and prayers remain with you and yours. We will continue to look for news.

Barb Weaver

Dear Smokey,
I hope you are not in too much pain. How do you eat? How horrible.
Heal quickly Smokey!


Ah little Smokey! Greetings from Canada! We're so glad to hear you're doing better. I know very well the fear and heartbreak of your 'humans' since the same terrible thing happened to my beloved chien when I was a little girl. Alas, my little one did not make it are going to be just fine. You are a tough little fellow in spite of your liquid brown eyes and blond coat. :) You hang in there. Hope you've got some good 'meds'. XXOO

Jennifer in OR

Speedy recovery to you all! This was a heart-thumping story, and I'm so glad we got the ending right up front!


Poor sweet baby, poor dear parents..I see how sad he seems even now with some "repairs" Our caniche was attacked by a coyote in our front yard last year..we had taken her out for her night business before turning in..and suddenly she ran to a place in the yard that was out of the light from the porch and began screaming. We thought she was being killed, and then saw the coyote run off down the street! Horrors! I know just how you felt, Kristen and Jean-Marc! We rushed her to the emergency vet and so lucky she was! The coyote had grabbed her by the head, and left a gash in her scalp and a puncture in her jaw skin, but not deep damage, and no blood vessels were broken. Our friendly, trusting puppy was some days in shock and afraid to leave the patio. Now we go out with her on a leash, and with a shovel handle weapon..and there is a motion light to illuminate that dark area. We hope your baby resumes her happy trust and that she is soon well again. I think I am not the only reader to have tears reading about her scary experience. Bless you, Kristen and Jean-Marc, and love and kisses and blessings on little Smokey!

Merrie Dail, Annapolis, MD

Impossible for all of us to not relate and remember our own experiences. I don't know if times like this help hearts to grow, but may everyone's wishes wrap you and your family (of which Smokey and Braise are a part) in love, the best medicine, as all heal. Take care.


Oh Kristin, what a terrible time for Smokey and his mother and you and your family. It sounds as if he's on the mend and dogs are so resilient. re giving him antibiotics. I'd suggest not giving them in his food - as you say, unless he eats every morsel, you don't know he's got them. I give my dogs and the dogs who stay here any medication embedded in one of those tiny cheese cubes you buy in the supermarkets in France - Apericube. Sometimes you find them in the chilled area and sometimes just on a shelf. You perhaps know of it. Try a tiny piece of it first and if he woofs it down, then hide the pill (s) with the rest. From then on, he'll love it! Hope that helps. Your love and care is getting him through.

Jaclyn Wesolowski

Aww! what happened to little Smokey is so horrible, I hope he has a quick, painless recovery!

It has been a while since I studied any French, but I am going to attempt to translate this phrase anyways:

"Le trafic de faux médicaments dans les pays en voie de développement est une plaie béante planétaire."

I believe it translates...

the traffic of false medications in countries show development is a...???(I have no idea what the end means)

That's the best I could do without going online to look it up! How did I do?


"Le trafic de faux médicaments dans les pays en voie de développement est une plaie béante planétaire. This was correctly translated by Ann, above. Other translations were a bit off, sorry.
Traffic in fake (counterfeit) drugs in developing (third world) countries is a gaping wound (a huge problem) on our planet.

Traci from MN

Our hearts go out to you! Dogs are like our children (sometimes they are my favorite children!) and it must have been heart-wretching to see! We pray for a full, rapid recovery for Smokey! I have to admit when I saw the word, I choked back a tear as a friend of ours was in a horrible car accident and has "une plaie" that cannot yet be closed up, after a full week. Each day is precious! Embrasse Smokey pour nous, les amis de Minnesota!

Eileen deCamp

Hi Kristin,
What a scary thing to happen to Smokey! I hope he will be fine. Our pets become a part of our family and when they are hurt it is like one of our own children. He looks so sweet in the picture.
Take care and all the best to Smokey!

Diana Taylor, Pug At The Beach

Your mother is right. Dogs are animals even though some people treat them as children. We can be overflowing with love for them but in the end they follow their instincts.
I'm glad to see your little fellow made it through and send well wishes for a speedy recovery!
Diana Taylor
Top Dog
Pug At The Beach
Where mindful living meets artful play through the adventures of an island dog philosopher whose name is Pug. He's part Dalai Lama, part Jimmy Buffett, and a whole lotta fun!


I lost my little dog after the wildfires in Southern California. My little dog socks was attacked by a bobcat and I heard the horrible screams. I found my little dog and took him to the vet where they put him to sleep. The injuries were too severe and he would never be the same.
I am so happy for you that Smokey is alive and will recover. It is a traumatic event for the whole family when a pet is attacked or lost.
Bon Courage to all of you.


Hi Kristin and family. I have had Smokey on the brain since reading yesterday's blog. I'm so relieved to hear that he is going to be OK! As I write this, my own sweet 9-year old lab "puppy" sleeps with his head on my lap, without a care or concern in the world and I cringe to think about what your poor sweet puppy endured. One of the great things about dogs, however, is their pure love of life and their ever-trusting souls. I'm sure with a lot of TLC, Smokey is going to be just fine. He is very lucky to have such a wonderful and caring family to nurse him back to health. Please keep us posted on his progress!


Oh dear little puppy...what a heart wrench you have given us all and especially Mama Braise and all your family!! Keep safe and keep close to those who care for you.

This morning the ocean is stretched out before us like a pond and we have been watching a mother whale and her calf frolic in the water. Mother would lift one enormous fin out of the water and...ker-splash! Baby would lift her much tiner fin out and...ker-splash too. Just wonderful! It makes you realise how beautiful and gentle nature can be one moment and how wild and fickle she can be the next. Enjoy your little puppy Smokey...I think he has some wonderful protectors!!

Jennifer Jaffe

I'm in the Apple store viewing this and trying to get my comments to work. Hope Smokey is feeling better.


I found you through a friend's blog - and I was stunned to read your story of Smokey - but so relieved to know he is going to be okay!!! That must have been so traumatic for ALL of you! I love your blog - love having a chance to learn a word or two of if only I can retain them!

Lorena Meunier

Cher Kristin,
I'm so sorry about Smokey's horrific experience, but glad that he's recovering from his injuries. The poor puppy! Your love and care will help him get better and restore his trust in good people. It's too bad this is how he learned that not everyone wishes us well.

Pat Cargill

Dear Sweet Smokey, I am so sorry you had this traumatic experience and very glad to here you are bravely surviving and my heart goes out to you and Kristi and J-M and the children who love you are in all our hearts and prayers. I hold you in my arms and sing sweet songs to you; you are wrapped in the warm wishes of so many who are wishing for your speedy recovery. Dear K, you are so brave - we are thinking of you with all our hearts and hugs "across the miles." Tourjours, Pat


I send my best wishes to Smokey. As I read the story I wondered which of his Moms was in worse distress -- his canine or his human one. I couldn't imagine the horror of finding one of my furry babies in such a state. Prayers from one Mom to another.


Cher Smokey, mon cher Toutou and I are so happy you have survived such an attack and send warm healing thoughts and much love to you and your family. Amazing grace how sweet the sound...nous t'embrasse tres forte! Cindy

Jules Greer

Dearest Kristi,

It's Wednesday morning, I am back here checking out all of these wonderful and truly loving comments from all of your special friends - all of their thoughts fill my heart with love and joy, you are so
blessed to have these special friends.

The power of their words and personal stories add the final (sp?) glaze to each story of your life which you so graciously share with us.

I wish all mothers had a daughter like you -
I want your friends to understand FWAD gives me an open door into my daughters life, I always receive each post as a personal letter from you to me.

I love you




Although justified and from personal experience, the following is a bit of a rant, maybe not for Smokey's tender little ears:

My youngest daughter (2 or 3 years old at the time) and I were delivering food for sick friends a few years ago and were approaching the front door when a neighbor's pit mix bounded from somewhere from which he had been previously invisible and headed straight for my tiny girl. Had I not gotten to her first (she was lagging behind me by about 4 or 5 yards), she would have been snapped up in a mouthful and torn to shreds. I understand that these creatures are not responsible for their animal instincts, and my ANIMosity is entirely with the human owners who exhibit neither the higher intelligence one should expect from homo sapiens, nor the common consideration that is due to others-- especially when they and their animals are the ones encroaching upon the property of others. Furthermore, instincts that cannot be mitigated as anything less than evil are being cruelly (for both humans and the animals) bred into these dogs, with irresponsibility and wantonness.
To understate, I have never been a fan of violent breeds, and find the motives in those that feel the need to keep and breed such animals to be triggered by a pathological need for power and cruelty, or by some exaggerated response to victimization. I love dogs for what they were originally created to be: man's best friend, capable of wonderful, unlimited amounts of affection and unconditional love, including protection if need be. Even German shepherds-- such as those my family owned-- can be both effective protectors and great family dogs. How many tragedies with the death, maiming, and permanent disfiguration (countless statistics with small children, in particular) will it take to show the more-than-obvious menace that irresponsible pet ownership poses? Friends of ours had half their son's face torn off by a rottweiler that came into a yard not owned by its owners. This is by no means some random statistic; such occurrences are so constant and quotidian that one must question why they are yet so unregulated. Keeping pit bulls, rottweilers, and large or poisonous snakes at all-- but especially without painstaking care to restriction-- bears precisely the same dangers and attention to public safety (or children living within the household, most often the victims) as does the keeping of any savage or exotic animal. Those who propagate the creation of genetically-engineered monsters, who flaunt complete disdain for the rights and welfare of others, should be penalized in a way that renders a prohibitive effect to their criminally careless behavior.

I am praying that Smokey is completely healed, both physically and emotionally. Dogs *do* make complete recoveries in both aspects. May you have your sweet, trusting puppy back very soon... and may poor Braise be totally recuperated from her traumatization, as well! Love to all of you.


I read a horrific story about a dog who had bitten a couple of times and bit an animal, then attacked a woman unprovoked and nearly took her foot off!

These dogs should be put down. It could have been one of your children! Or you, if you had tried to intervene.

I'm glad he is getting better.

We had a miniature dobie when I was growing up, and he was mauled by a neighbor's great Dane. (We steered clear of that dog, who was chained.) My mother prayed him better with a lot of love after the vet stitched him and said to just take him home and love him while he lasted. He didn't think he'd survive. He lived a long time after. Never underestimate the power of love -- and prayer!


Le pauvre petit Smokey! I was so upset to read the poor lad's terrible experience but am glad to read he is recovering. Mia and Floydie (mes deux chiens) send their best wishes and healing licks.

You don't say if the attack dogs were ever caught?

All the best


ps love reconnecting with my slightly lost French via your word a day and reading about your dogs and their adventures.


What a terrifying and heartbreaking story.... Am so glad he will be okay.


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