Of course I know as well as the next person that “Don’t bite the hand that feeds you” means don’t harm someone who treats you well. Reading this, however, as today’s topic took me back into the mists of time and I remembered an incident that illustrated today’s expression quite literally.
Some thirty years ago, I had a dog called Napoleon. He was one of those small white ones called a Pomeranian. He was quite attached to me and I too was very fond of him.
One day, I was pouring his meal into his bowl which was on the floor. Now Napoleon happened to be exceptionally hungry that day and began on his lunch before I had finished dishing it out.
Since I was pouring his mixture of bread, mince and broth from above I was afraid of dropping it on his little head. So I pushed his dish away with my foot.
Poor Napoleon misinterpreted this thinking probably that I was going to snatch his meal. Fond though he was of me, he probably felt threatened. He opened his mouth and bit me on my big toe.This was such a shock for me that I almost fainted.
My parents took me to our family physician who insisted on a course of fourteen anti- rabies shots. Thankfully intra muscular anti rabies shots had appeared on the market by then. Before that, they used to be intra abdominal (in the tummy). I was in school then and a shot every day for two weeks seemed quite an ordeal.
I was too upset at the time to notice but my family said that the dog remained upset too for quite some time. He should have been, having bitten the toe that fed it.
Written for Fandango’s February Expressions