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Strixowl 02-20-05 07:44 PM

Hello All, I posted here because I ride a "bent" and at times we're closer to tooth level :D

I love dogs, but like most of you who ride a bicycle of any configuration you've probably been chased, & scared S---less or even munched on by one. I realize there's something about bicycles that infatuates the canine species almost, or at times more than :D the female of the human species infatuates the male of the same :D . But in most cases we don't hunt them down, knock them off their bikes and eat them clothes and all.

Most of the time I can get a dog to leave me alone with a sharp, loud NO!! (and fast peddling). Other times it goes for blocks or even a good mile one time. This morning I had an experience where the only thing that save me was a sharp "crack" across the nose of a beautiful German Shepherd, which sent him off yelping..... I have a friend who carries Pepper Spray (which I understand doesn't always work) & I've heard a few other ideas.

I would like any suggestion/ideas/solutions anyone has come up with. I really love dogs & I really love my body intact.

I would also like to apologize for the analogy I used in the first para if anyone was offended. I also really love & respect the females of our species :)

Bud Bent 02-20-05 10:24 PM

Besides the biting, hitting a dog can be bad news, too (see my post in this thread: I carry a can of Halt attached to my bike where I can grab it very quickly. It's not as strong as pepper spray, but seems to be the most often recommended repellent.

sch 02-21-05 07:05 AM

That was one of my concerns when I first got a bent but for some reasons dogs in this state seem
to be a little bashful or circumspect around bents and it has never been a problem despite my seat
height of 15". Only problem I ever had was a very friendly dog that was obviously a deer or coon
dog as it ran with the group for over 4mi at speeds of 15-18mph. Dog just wanted some attention
and would run along side me for several hundred yards putting his muzzle across my arm "pet me,
pet me". Kept pushing him away but to no avail. Ended up with dog slobber all over my sleeve.

Best dog deterent I ever used was a old car radio antenna, had it in a clip on the DF and when
chased it was easy to unclip, extend to full length and at 42"long, the dog, when close enough, never
saw it coming but sure reacted to the hit. Broke a $20 Silca pump on one dog... didn't phase it.
Spray and clubs are more of a hazard to the rider IMO than to the animal, because bike riders have a
very small balance window and it is even smaller on a bent than a DF so it is easy to knock yourself down trying to spray an animal and if the wind is right it could blow back on you, and it is effective on bare skin but especially on the face. Other riders don't appreciate being sprayed either. Steve

Strixowl 02-21-05 11:03 AM

Any and all ideas welcom as we move more into biking season in my area.

Bud Bent, thanks for the interesting thread. It's the smaller yapyaps (with sharp teeth) I've had trouble with and by the way what is Halt? If it's not a form of pepper spray what is it & where can it be found?

SkyMax 02-22-05 05:24 PM

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I had problems with a particularily mean and agressive dog that would literally stand his ground on the bike path and growl forcing all bikers to take evasive avoiding action. He was always in the same spot.
One day i lost my temper and charged directly at him screaming a war cry as loud as I could and waving one arm above my head. I was so p---ed at this dog by now that I was going to ram him if I could.
Obviously the dog had never been counter-attacked before and his eyes widened and he leapt out of my way confused and rattled by my kamikaze tactic.
After i had done this a couple of times he would get off the path when he saw me coming.

Clear Skies, Mark.

Bud Bent 02-22-05 09:07 PM

Halt is a spray. It's red which makes it easy to aim, and sprays a small stream, which makes it not get blown where it's not intended. Any bike shop will have it. Nashbar does too:

arboc! 02-22-05 09:15 PM

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could you mace this dog?.... shes so cute

Strixowl 02-24-05 12:38 AM

Sorry dirtjumpP.1, but I could if his/her teeth were in my body or mouth was open and very close to chomping into my meat. Please understand I have a very beautiful, loving Golden Retriever whom I love dearly. Cute can also be deadly (had a few girlfriends like that :D )

Thanks for the link Bud :)

So far the Sky Max method has worked the best, but there have been those other times :mad:

arboc! 02-24-05 12:51 AM

well you live in spokane, so you might have a run in with her....

Strixowl 02-24-05 06:32 PM

dirtjumpP.1 Thanks for the heads up!! Those eyes are scary!!!! :eek:

Sylvan 02-25-05 03:09 PM

Our local bike club - TCBA - Tri County Bike Association in Lansing MI just had our monthly meeting. At that meeting Hector Hernandez, a dog trainer for local police departments and protection training for Post office delivery personnel, gave us a presentation tailiored to bikers. WONDERFUL!

He is in process of writing a book, but here are the salient points that I took away from the meeting:
1. Carefully observe the dogs behavior. Tense body posture preceeds an attack. If the dog is still moving it body side to side, you're probably ok for the moment. If the dog is rigid, LOOK OUT!
2. NEVER turn your back side to the dog. Dismount, put your bike between you and the dog and BACK AWAY slowly. Do NOT ROLL away with your butt exposed. Keep the bike between you and the dog.
3. Swing your bike side to side (aka a Klingon Batleth or Quarterstaff) to knock the dog away.
4. Hold still. A dog's attack instinct is heightened by movement. If you're bitten, don't pull away - pulling causes the dog to bite harder and will rip your flesh more. If viciously attacked, ball up on the ground and protect your head with arms and elbows. Hold still. Dogs lose interest if you're down, quiet and still.
5. Distract the dog with a helmet, jersey, pump, or whatever. Let them chomp on something besides you and while they're chomping, you can klonk or karate chop them somewhere sensitive - Throat, Shoulders, spine to disengage/disable them.
6. do NOT yell. Yelling only raises the dog's adrenaline level. (yeah.. right... easy for HIM to say!)
7. If a dog is attacking, they get tunnel vision. You can approach a dog that is attacking a companion or other person from the rear and they will never know you're coming. Hit them in the back HARD or pull the rear legs apart to dislocate the hips. Not a permanent injury, but it WILL disable a dog who is intent on doing bodily harm to a person.
8. Call out common commands "Sit!" "Stay!" "Down" and "Fooey!" (seriously... "fooey" means "Bad Dog" in many dog training circles... tells the dog that they messed up.) to confuse the dog long enough to sprint.

One member of the club said "Shift into the small ring and aim for their neck".... to a lot of laughter...

My personal strategies include
1- water bottle squirting - figure eight motion to spread the water wider and have a better chance of hitting the pooch.
2- Hollering a greeting to any owner in the yard - "Hi! I ride every tuesday and thursday evening! Can you call your dog in?"
3. listening to the owner call the dog so I'll know it's name for the NEXT encounter... "Ceasar! How's it going buddie? Yeah, I know... you're being a great guard dog tonight, now shoo! Off! Sit!"
4. If time permits, and the owner is in the yard, I'll stop, WITH BIKE BETWEEN ME AND THE DOG, chit chat, ask them to introduce me to the dog and tell them "you NEED to control your dog! Our county laws dictate that your dog must be "under control at all times" and when your dog is out on the road chasing me, it is in danger. If you like, I'll call you when I'm about to ride past and you can use my riding by as an opportunity to discipline your dog away from the street. It could save the dog's life you know.
5. So far, I've not encountered any really vicious dogs, but I'm ready when it happens, thanks to Hector.

The link to our local club is Click on "Chainwheel Chatter" down in the bottom navigation bar to get to February's newsletter and the announcement for Mr. Hernandez' talk.

Best of luck in YOUR attempts to avoid being dog chow.

SkyMax 02-25-05 05:54 PM

That's all great advice and worth remembering.
I should point out that my "Charging" tactic is only good in certain circumstances. Such as if the dog stands tensely in your path with ears folded and head lowered or runs straiaght at you from the front.
The dog in my story was the meanest, most aggressive animal I have ever encountered.
Most Dogs will sidle off to the edge of your path while eyeballing you so they can commence a "strafing" run at your rear quarter.

In case you are interested in Australia we have a zero-tolerance "Companion Animals Act".
If your dog is not restrained on a leash when off your propery, or, you have not taken adequate steps to restrict the dog to your property its a $500 fine no excuses.
If your dog bites anybody, in any way, to any degree, it is arrested and shot at dawn. Plus hefty fines, No exceptions, even if the person bitten does not want the dog destroyed. One bite and its a dead dog.

Clear Skies, Max.

steveknight 02-25-05 10:04 PM


Originally Posted by Strixowl
the female of the human species infatuates the male of the same . But in most cases we don't hunt them down, knock them off their bikes and eat them clothes and all.

speak for your self (G) well I dream about it anyway.

steveknight 02-25-05 10:06 PM

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you know your in trouble when this dog chases you (G)
those legs can really move.

Strixowl 02-25-05 10:32 PM

Sylvan : Thanks for the good read, I'm not sure I could agree with "every" point, or remember them at the time, I sure liked gettting the bike between me and poochie's teeth & bashing a few times :fight:

steveknight: I don't think I ruled out dreams in my first post did I ? :D

Sylvan 02-26-05 04:56 PM

You're very welcome!

I'd just had an earful of ideas the previous evening and here you gave me the *perfect* oportunity to trot out all my new found knowledge. :rolleyes:

dfulton 02-28-05 04:16 PM

I've used an zounds air horn successfully against several dogs, it seems to break them out of their trance. Works for some car drivers too.


Strixowl 02-28-05 11:26 PM

dfulton: Is "zounds" a type or a brand?

SkyMax 03-01-05 12:57 AM

Ive seen those Zounds horns but never heard one.
Are they as loud as those "canned air" horns they use for sporting events?
How long will the bottle hold a good "charge" if not used for awhile?
Thanx, max

dfulton 03-01-05 05:16 PM

Yes zounds is the brand, do a google search, using the "froogle" link.

Is is a rechargable air horn using a pop bottle for the container. They can take a remarkable amount of pressure! You can usually find them for around $20. I like it because it fits in a bottle cage and is refillable. AND VERY LOUD! It must be used carefully on trails though, it tends to make people as likely to jump in front of you as away, I usually only use it on the street, on dogs, or for morons.


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