Mad Dog Terrorizes Small Beach Community

My wife and I were combing the beach yesterday afternoon, as we often do, looking for photographic opportunities, unusual shells, and absorbing our daily dose of vitamin D.  There are rarely many people on the beach at mid-day.  The tourists have mostly retreated to their hotel rooms, restaurants, or beach bars where they can cuddle up to air conditioners.  The beach vendors can be found in the shade of palm trees, discussing the current crop of cheapskates who aren’t buying their bird whistles or Chinese-produced Costa Rican handicrafts.

It’s hot here in the afternoon…hot enough to drive just about anyone or anything to fits of unusual behavior.

march 28 2013 2090So, we’re walking down the beach and we see a black beach dog out in the waves pawing at something floating in the water.  My wife thought this interesting behavior, and took a photograph.  The dog noticed us, and rushed out of the surf, dropping a coconut shell at our feet.  Yelping and growling, the creature batted the coconut about with his paws, knocking the nut into submission.

My past experience with mad dogs made me think I should back away from the scene unfolding before me.  My wife – such a brave soul – started clicking away, hoping to record the carnage for mass distribution and edification. The vicious animal began ripping away at the helpless fruit, pawing at it and pinning it to the ground.  In the rush of the moment my wife didn’t notice her shadow in the frame.


march 28 2013 2091

march 28 2013 2092

I tried taking on one of these tough nuts on Playa Negra once, smashing the coconut against the edge of a concrete bench.  The bench suffered some, chipped pieces of concrete flying in all directions,  but the husk of the coconut suffered little more than a dent.  I gave up.

But this dog was not to be deterred.  He growled, and barked, and pawed, and tore at his defenseless victim.  I felt helpless as the shredded pieces of the body were strewn about the beach before us.

march 28 2013 2094


As quickly as the vicious attack had begun, it ended.  The black beach dog sniffed at the dismembered coconut, looked up at us to gauge our response to his show of power.  Then, he turned and calmly walked away, head swaying from side to side, snake-hipping his way down the beach to confront and vanquish any other insolent nuts that looked as though they needed a reminder who was truly the King of Playa Tamarindo.  The torn flesh of the beach nut before us was the only evidence that anything out of the ordinary had happened, so we made our way up the beach.  Calling the police into the situation would only have complicated our day.


march 28 2013 2095

26 thoughts on “Mad Dog Terrorizes Small Beach Community

  1. mrs fringe says:

    Impeccable timing, as always. I’m glad the mad dog won. My oldest waged battle with a coconut last week. He believes he won, produced a cake. I’m not so sure, as I wait for the bill from the ER 😀

  2. jannatwrites says:

    Another innocent coconut battered and left for dead. Sigh. You’re right, though. Calling the police would’ve complicated things!

    Such an odd thing to witness. I think I would’ve been too scared to take pictures.

  3. "HE WHO" says:

    Hard to believe the dog actually broke the coconut apart. Harder still to believe that someone actually has a beach to walk on. We got snow today, and so far it’s still there!

  4. I am so glad you survived your encounter with the King of Playa Tamarindo! It would be a shame to read about you two in the paper, “bits of coconut and locals found scattered about,” “nothing but shells were left,” police claim. not the sort of news one wants to hear.

  5. Of mad dogs and coconuts…give me two pina coladas, one for each hand…

    • coyotero2112 says:

      “Only Mad Dogs and Coconuts go out in the mid-day Sun…” – Joe Cocker
      I was thinking of that the whole time I was watching this display of ferocity, then while I was writing it. If the Red Man gets bored there’s always a few shells emptied for the “pipa” drinkers. They make for good toys, or cathartic objects of retribution.

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