Triathlon - bad dogs: how to deal with them?
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11-23-07, 05:09 PM
Has anyone had to deal with bad dogs on the loose while you're out on a training run?
If so, how have you dealt with it? What is the best way to react?
I was out on a short run today and went by a number of houses that had dogs in the
yard. Most were fairly well behaved and stayed put - either that or they were behind
fences and couldn't get out. One place had a dog that was loose and actually chased
after me. I could hear it barking as it came after me. I stopped and turned around to
see what it was. Fortunately it was a small weiner dog (dachshund) so I don't think it
presented too much of a problem as long as it didn't try to lunge and bite me. I stopped
and spread my arms out (to look bigger) and screamed at it. The thing barked once or
twice and ran off.
This got me to wondering what is the best approach if this happens. What do you do
if it's a large dog?
11-23-07, 05:57 PM
You might want to try carrying some Halt! with you.
Also, if someone says "He don't bite", he probably do. One dog that was following me stopped when I dismounted. When I got back on, he latched his jaws on my pant leg and tried to pull me down. :eek:
Dogs are a danger to all cyclists. If bitten by one, it hurts. If even a small ankle-biter runs under your tires, you can go down hard. Thus, they must be taken seriously. I ride in rural Oklahoma and there are some pretty nasty dogs in some places.
On the other hand, I'm Choctaw. When dogs chase me, know matter what their size or disposition, I let them know my ancestors ate them for dinner and that if I get my hands on them, so will I.
Something about that attitude is apparent to even the most obtuse dog and I rarely have to do more than talk to them gruffly.
However, it cannot be an empty threat. If they make a serious run at me. I unclip well before the interception takes place. Hop of my bike on side away from the dog and then prepare for mortal combat. My bike is the weapon of choice and it will be thrown on top of the dog with force. Then, trapping the dog under the frame and wheels, I will beat it to death, stomp it to death or choke it to death, depending on how the dog is lodged under the bike.
Then, throw the carcus in a ditch and continue the ride.
Works for me. Try it.
11-24-07, 12:37 AM
I've always been crazy, to quote Waylon Jennings. I actually bopped a couple small ones on the head while on my bike (not fond of it) and they took off wondering what happened. It used to be the spring of my old Schwinn that bugged them.
I just make a loud --- of myself and crowd them out. Sorta works for stupid teenagers too.
Before you freak, the last dog was the subject of a hearing as it bother kids I found out later on. It shouldn't have been allowed out front with no fence and no leash. You need your wits about you even if you look insane.
11-24-07, 01:12 AM
^^^hehe. I tried a similar thing with a couple of teenage punk and scared the !@#$ out of them. I haven't done it since though because you never know what they are jacked up on!!!
What do you do if you're out running though and don't have a bike to use as a getaway vehicle or as a barrier between you and the dog? Is stuff like "Halt" legal in most states?
I think "Halt" products are legal in most states. Certainly they are in Oklahoma. But I hate carrying extra stuff with me when I run.
When running, I am aware that I am "unarmed" except for my attidue. I normally have some situational awarness about possible dog ambush spots. As I come to those, I will pick out a rock for each hand. I don't like very big ones. As the dog or dogs make their run up I launch the first rock outside any reasonable distance for accuracy. But, I make sure it lands in front of the lead dog and skips a few times up to him. That often stops the whole thing. At least they figure out that I am not so easy a mark. The second rock needs to be saved in the event the dog/s come on and ideally and the ground quickly searched for more rocks. This time the throw needs to sharp and true. I wait until the last moment to ensure a strike. In any event, it needs to be followed up with a commitment to chase, holler and make funny noises at the dog/s.
All this is a lot easier if you are on a gravel road like we have around here. When I run on asphalt roads with no ammo, I carry my rocks a lot farther for protection. Sometimes a stick is all that is available, though, and I will carry that.
Still, however, I think the most important thing to have with you is an "attitude." "Here, little doggie. Come here a little closer, so I can smash you with my shoe, kick you in the gut and stomp on your head." Somehow, they figure out that I'm not kidding and that if given the opportunity I will truly grab them by their neck and carry them bodily barking and kicking and scratching and snapping over to a t-post fence post and impale them on it like a gutted catfish. They leave me alone for the most part.
All this interrupts an otherwise peaceful run, and doesn't make me proud when I go to Sunday School, but it has served me well while training.
11-26-07, 04:21 PM
What I have done in the past;
Either, stand up and go. I will garentee that any dog that you will have come at you, will not be able to maintain more then 15-20mi/hr for very long. That is something that you can do on a bike pretty friken easy. Or i have just uncliped one foot, when the dog came up, and nice swift kick. The first option, the dog always comes out. The later, the dogs I have done that too, have never come out of their yard when I ride by.
Running I have always done the same thing. I run at the dog screaming as loud as I can, any dog that keeps comming at you, you were going to get bit anyways. I have never had a dog not turn tail and head for the hills.
11-28-07, 02:35 PM
Never had a problem with a bad dog but once on a hot day I had one run beside me for a couple of miles, I finaly had to stop and give im some water...silly thing LOl
11-29-07, 07:47 AM
Never had a dog come after me, but I did have a peacock freak out when I suddenly came around the corner on a ride... And pheasants behave amusingly like large awkward squirrels when you're quickly approaching on a road. :)
11-29-07, 09:17 AM
Rides are easy, you just sprint.
Runs, a suitably imperious "Get DOWN!" should do it and stop 'em in their tracks. Dogs are territorial, they're usually trying to scare you off their patch or away from their special friends, so you won't get chased over hill and dale by 'em.
Dwyane1 - you must be his special friend!
02-20-08, 03:10 PM
This is what frame pumps were made for. DOG POLO! lol
02-20-08, 06:31 PM
When I was about ten years old my dad told me something he'd seen. I don't know where it was, but my dad installed phones for the telephone company, and ran into a lot of dogs. Now, he didn't do this, but saw someone who did. A Doberman came sprinting after someone. This is what my dad told me (he was a good story teller, but never just made stuff up, all though this sounds so amazing, that one might think it was).
The guy turned his body about 45 degrees to the Doberman, with feet separated enough to squat a little. He had one armed cocked back, with a karate-style fist, ready to strike at the dog. As the dog lunged toward him he threw his fist down the dog's throat. With his other hand he grabbed one of the dog's back legs.
At this point the dog knew the guy "owned" him. He held the dog just long enough to make sure the fight was gone out of the dog, then released him.
In 35 or so years, that's a mental image thats never left my mind. I don't know if I could pull it off, but worst case scenario is that I strike first, and strike hard.
I was running on a trail one time and a german shepherd leapt up on me, without warning. I used to normally trust dogs. The dog was with two boys, and I think had a natural protective instinct, and may have even been just (way) overly playful. I reacted without even time to think, throwing a forearm close to his mouth, where he gladly latched on. The dog didn't draw any blood, and I shook him off. I was so livid I chased the dog, and he ran off.
I guess the moral of that story is that when you see a dog, especially a big one, always be prepared for a fight. Even a good natured dog can look at a runner and see a moving target. I'f I'd been prepared, I would have responded much differently, rather than than just react.
02-25-08, 10:38 PM
bring a water bottle with some kind of chili, pepper concoction and spray the dog in the face. might not work.
02-26-08, 04:13 AM
last time i sprayed a dog with water he hot PI**ED. I thought I was dead.
02-26-08, 11:54 PM
I have to agree with Tyson B. While a little daschund can usually be scared off by putting up your hands and yelling, some of the bigger breeds will not be impressed. If a bigger dog decides to push the matter, I consider it fair game. I am going to do whatever I need to do to defend myself. Some dogs though think its a game and will keep running with you. But as soon as one of them tries to bite, its tantamount to throwing the first punch. Its on. And in case you are wondering, I also take the same tack with cars too. Put a nice dent with my shoe just this morning into the rear quarter panel of a truck that cut me off by turning right after speeding up and passing me forcing me to emergency brake and evasion into the curb. Driver was so into his cellphone conversation he didnt even realize I put a huge dent in his brand new pickup truck and kept going.
02-27-08, 03:20 PM
Bike, run, whatever: Counter attack. They are generally being territorial or using their prey drive to chase the moving critter. So stop being the prey and be the hunter. Growl, bark, go wild. Bull charge them. They usually back down. If push comes to bite, then go for the throat or upper snout (hand in mouth) with a death grip and try to flip the dog. At that point you'll get bit, but usually not mauled if you hang on. That's my experience. So far I've won and only needed to be stitched up after a Chow-chow decided I was edible (they attack continuously, most dogs bite and retreat). Even then, it was just the hand I used. If the dog outweighs you, have a plan 'B'.
02-29-08, 08:11 AM
I'm reading through here thinking Man, am I glad I only have to deal with the Canada Geese when they have their young with them! They can be vicious and attack, but I'm confident a good swift kick would break their long neck.
Only once was I followed by a large barking dog, in Florida when I was at a conference. It backed off when I growled at it, which gave me some confidence. Good thing, because 1/2 a mile down the road (that I hadn't mapped out before I went on a meandering run in strange territory), I realized I was at a dead end and had to go back the same way. He seemed to appreciate I wouldn't back down, but neither was I going to threaten his territory. He barked and kept to his side of the road, I growled and kept to my side. I was glad there weren't any people around to witness me growling though!
Pepper spray is a good idea for self defense against more than just animals and they make small models that fit on a key chain. If you encounter a dog on the loose, as soon as possible call animal control. Bad pets=bad owners. There is a lot of bravado on the internet and people are always quick to describe how bad and tough they are while living life on the edge clinging to a keyboard. While I have fought for my life against both man and beast in my profession, it is not as easy as it sounds. I own a 110 pound Amercian Bulldog that throws me (6'5, 240) around while just rough playing and I can assure you most of the tough guy techniques here will not work against certain breeds. Like i said, pepper works extremely well. If not, try to get your hands on a stick if you can and keep the bike between you and the dog as best as you can, while being prepared to strike the dog at the time of his lunge. If you try to trap the dog underneath your bike against certain breeds, things are going to change from bad to worse very quickly.
I was in rural Japan, and was chased by a pack of wild dogs. I ignored them while ****ting myself, but they finally gave up.
That same week, some dumb**** neighbor had their dogs loose...we ARE out in the country, so I guess they didn't think any further about people actually jogging around. Anyways one of their dogs got REALLY close to biting me (my ass/legs), and I just stopped, turned around, yelled "No!" while pointing my finger at him. lol he probably doesn't understand English, but I'm sure he understands tones of voices. Seriously, at least if you're biking, you have a frame and perhaps a tube pump to work with. You'll figure out SOMETHING in the time of panic. :)
Pepper spray is a good idea for self defense
+1. Yeah, I'd say if you're running in unknown territory, be prepared with some pepper spray or at least a stout, well-weighted stick or mini club. I've run on some country roads and been chased by (big) dogs. Nothing's has ever happened to me, but what a ***** it is to deal with. Kicking, growling and screaming at a dog that gets too close can work sometimes, but why not just give the thing an awful, convincing lesson with the push of a button?
It's good to project an assertive, alpha attitude for the dog to pick up on--to let the dog know as much as possible that it won't get close without lethal cost-- but it's better to do that with absolutely effective recourse. If you're prepared with something like spray, you can concentrate a little more on the run itself. And if you have to pass the same dog to get back to where you're going, it's a fairly safe bet he'll stay under the porch the second time around.
05-08-08, 11:33 AM
I was recently chased by two nasty dogs... it was a bit uphill so I ended up with a good high-intensity sprint workout. Luckily, the dogs bonked before me :-)
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