They say walking a dog is one of the quickest ways to make friends. Especially when it is a very beautiful black Newfoundland called Tinkerbell. When we lived in a village she was better known than us.
However now she lives in the inner-city and is getting a mixed reaction. Her new home is distinctly multi-cultural and while she still gets lots of people stopping to pat her and say hello, one group of people go out of their way to avoid her - crossing the road to walk on the pavement there rather than pass her.
It was explained to me that in some cultures dogs, particularly black dogs, are seen as 'Devil Dogs' or linked to 'Death.' Tinks is blissfully unaware of this of course and tries to make friends with everyone. She'd have an attack of another sort of 'Black Dog' if she understood! Interesting - how prejudice and culture can close down a chance for communication and friendship even at this simple level.