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Got Chased By A Dog Twice This Weekend - One Almost Made Contact!

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Got Chased By A Dog Twice This Weekend - One Almost Made Contact!

Old 08-09-10, 09:45 AM
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Palomar01
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Got Chased By A Dog Twice This Weekend - One Almost Made Contact!

Just need to vent.

This passed weekend, I had two dog incidents, which was really unusual but not surprising. The first one occurred while I was riding through a residential neighborhood. It was kind of funny because it was a small Jack Russell dog that probably weighed no more than 20 lbs. and it was short. I was cruising about 12 mph and the sucker came out of some bush and started chasing. Because he was short, he couldn’t really reach to my leg. I sped up to see how fast that little sucker could go (not that fast) and he quickly gave up when I pulled away from him. I could hear his owners calling out to him. Aggressive little sucker.

The following day was more scary. I was a block from my house riding by a Jr High school and on my way home, so I was doing about 8 mph and cooling down. I was on the road and to my right was the school garden area with bushes lining up the edge of the grass. I could hear a man and woman playing with their dog but I didn’t think much of it nor did I look. This area has a park next to it and lots of people walk their dogs (90% of the time on a leash). As I cruised by the school I heard this growling and barking, then from the periphery of my vision I saw this big, puffy, white dog running and gaining on me. I looked over and I saw a big-ass Chow-Chow looking mix running towards me. This guy was big and fast. My heart began to race and for a split second I pondered my options. About 50 yards ahead was a busy intersection. Should I stop and defend myself? Or should I sprint? I could hear the dog’s owners yelling with desperation. “Rex! Stop! Rex! Stop!” The big bastards simply accelerated at me and the only thing that kept him from getting close enough at that moment were the bushes that lined the edge of the grass and separated that area from the road. I decided to sprint. That damn dog was fast though and I had to go fast. I made it to the intersection and made a quick right turn and kept on going. Luckily, there were no cars coming, and the big Chow-Chow gave up the chase when he got to the edge of the grass. He was able to get close though since the bushes ended after 25 yards and I was sure that if I had stopped or the dog didn’t growl and let me know he was after me, I would have gotten bit. I thought about going back to let the owners know how I really felt but changed my mind. I wasn’t sure if the dog would be secure then and I would be riding towards it….not good options.

Now I’m thinking about calling up the city and see if they can be stricter about the dog leash rules in that area, although I have low expectations about what they are willing to do. I do shudder to think what if I was a parent walking his little kids? Or what if I was just a kid on a little BMX-style bicycle? My wife suggested I carry Mace with me but I’m not sure how well that will work—I mean, I have to pull it out, aim it, while riding/dismounting……I would have to practice that. If people would just keep their dogs on a leash then this wouldn’t be an issue.

However, last month my co-worker was bit by a Pit Bull while running for fitness in her neighborhood. The Pit Bull was on its leash too but it surprised its owner and got loose. She had two puncture wounds under her knees and the Pit Bull was taken from its owner only because it had no official paperwork and was an unauthorized ownership. WTF?
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Old 08-09-10, 09:51 AM
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If it gets bad, or makes you feel better you may want to invest in some mace. I've also heard of people carrying bleach and water in a spray bottle. This could be classified as cruel though. That sucks though, I've ran into many dogs that like to chase, but I've never had anything really bad.
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Old 08-09-10, 09:53 AM
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I tend to stand my ground and tell them they don't want to bite me. It's worked well so far. Most dogs, in my experience, talk a good game but don't follow through if you don't run or back down.

The ones I really detest are the ones in the back seats of cars with their heads out the window. They wait until they're right next to your head and then start snarling. Harmless but scary, especially if, like me, you tend to space out when you ride.
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Old 08-09-10, 10:02 AM
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Most of the time the dogs are just playful. Dogs like to chase things and in some cases even be chased. Even if they seem to be growling it is usually a playful growl like when I'd play ball or tug of war with my puppy. I'd hate to really hurt a playful dog with bleach or ammonia.

If they make a deeper growl and are baring their fangs that is cause for alarm. I'd say look it in the eyes while riding and yell no or sit down. A squirt with your water bottle is also normally effective.

If you think the dog is vicious and is roaming unrestrained then call animal control. I'd be nice also to have a way to report them to their homeowners insurance company. I really hate people who have unrestrained vicious dogs. They need to be charged with assault and get thrown in jail in my opinion.

Last edited by BikingGrad80; 08-09-10 at 10:20 AM.
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Old 08-09-10, 10:06 AM
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Frame pumps work well. Typically you just grab it and shake it like a weapon and the dog backs off, if not one good rap on the snout ought to do the trick.
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Old 08-09-10, 10:14 AM
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It happened to me a couple weeks ago. This shepherd got close to my leg, and started barking. It was my fault, I was listening to my iPod. Anyway, he didn't actually bite. I stopped, and made him back down. I always make dogs back down, except ones that want to trot with me. Facing down two or three is harder than a single dog. Identify the alpha and make it back away, then the others will back away too. One time in Kauai there were these three Dobies. The owner was letting them run free. Dealing with them was a hassle. The only time I was bitten was by this little maltese at night protecting its dog-walking owner. I ignored it, and it attacked. It was just an ankle bite on my shoe.
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Old 08-09-10, 10:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Daytrip View Post
I tend to stand my ground and tell them they don't want to bite me. It's worked well so far. Most dogs, in my experience, talk a good game but don't follow through if you don't run or back down.
This + Mace. I carry mace, and I've been chased twice. The first time I was chased, the dog wanted to bite my leg off (growling + teeth). I got off my bike, and put it between me and the dog. The dog kept barking for a bit, but then lost interest. A loud shout typically helps. The second time, was with a rather large dog. Once again, I stopped, stood ground, and the dog stopped. The dog seemed pretty friendly; just wanted to chase me for exercise.

But, yes, I still carry mace. You never know what you're going to run into.
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Old 08-09-10, 10:16 AM
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If I can't outrun them (going up hill, for example) I stop, scream bloody murder and shake my bike above my head at them like I'm wielding a mace. That always works.
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Old 08-09-10, 10:20 AM
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Time to start packing heat on your rides, sorry. If you're not already, bring an MP3 player and load it up with nothing but Westside Connection for that extra motivation.
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Old 08-09-10, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by BikingGrad80 View Post
If you think the dog is vicious and is roaming unrestrained then call animal control.
+1

If you experience frequent dog problems, you might also want to evaluate how you can handle the situations better. Many dogs will put on an impressive show, but very few will bite you if you keep your head. If you immediately go into battle mode or act like a spаz, the odds of you getting bitten go through the roof.

Lots of racket and teeth really close by (maybe inches) does not imply a bite risk worth worrying about. Think of it like a baseball player disputing an ump's call -- everyone gets in each others' faces and the encounter might not be friendly, but it's very rare than anything happens.
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Old 08-09-10, 10:42 AM
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banerjek,

so right. most of the time, bites just don't happen. Lots of barking though.
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Old 08-09-10, 10:53 AM
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Htfu
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Old 08-09-10, 10:53 AM
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I've had a few dogs come chase after me, but all but one I've seen before hand and just did a quick sprint and they typically stop chasing one they reach the end of their property.

The one time, I didn't see the dog, I was just cruising along and the last seconds, I hear quick foot steps. I turn to my right and I see a doberman's mouth inches from my calf! I made some weird startled sound and pure adrenaline made me sprint so fast out of harms way. I don't think I've ever jumped that fast in my life lol.

Other local cyclists have been chased by that dog. The next couple weeks, I kept an eye out when I crossed, but haven't seen the dog since...
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Old 08-09-10, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Eclectus View Post
banerjek,

so right. most of the time, bites just don't happen. Lots of barking though.
It's especially fun when you're on a trike dealing with poorly socialized rural animals because the teeth come in at eyeball level. I drop my cadence or even coast near dogs. On rare occasion, I have to stop. The trick is to keep yourself emotionally neutral.

The best way to deal with dogs is the same as the best way to deal with bees buzzing around your head or landing on you. You'll be fine if you just stay cool and move slowly but deliberately. Escalating the situation by getting amped up and thrashing about almost never leads to anything good.
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Old 08-09-10, 11:11 AM
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I have a dog that gets after me from time to time. It's a chow mix and it comes out into the road with teeth bared and some barking. It has gotten within a few inches of me, which made me stop, exit the bike on the opposite side and yell at the dog to get back. It seemed to work out that time. I've since changed my path to exclude this house.

Its very dangerous to have these dogs run out, more for accidents than bites though. If I see a dog ahead, I'll typically let it move on before I try to pass. If it doesn't, I simply roll through at a speed that I can control and dismount if needed. I haven't run into a pit bull yet and hope I never do. Those scare me and are very tough dogs. If I see one ahead, you can bet I'll turn around and go back the way I came; I'm not messing with a pit.
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Old 08-09-10, 04:08 PM
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Stop and give em a hug ... or ... buy some sabre pepper spray.
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Old 08-09-10, 04:21 PM
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here in pa its legal to shoot a nuisance dog, although i dont really carry while riding, if a pit bull was coming after me i dont think i would hesitate, a golden retriever or terrier id probably laugh.
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Old 08-09-10, 04:27 PM
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You can do pit bulls. My son was bitten by one, jogging. It's not going to happen to me. If you do a lot of riding around aggressive dogs, you have to learn how to talk to them, or carry bear spray or a gun, or ammonia or bleach, or something like that. I don't carry weapons, I go into vocalizations. One time I was riding with a guy, but a hundred feet behind him. Dogs chased him, he ran away. But now they gave up chasing him and were in front of me. I had to deal with them. They were farm dogs. Very territorial.

You can give them jerkey treats, but if you do that, you make them expect it.
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Old 08-09-10, 04:43 PM
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What's the big deal with pits? Sure, you need to have some respect for them, but they're hardly the most dangerous dogs. For starters, they're not as big or fast as a few other breeds that can do plenty of damage.
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Old 08-09-10, 09:50 PM
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Originally Posted by banerjek View Post
What's the big deal with pits?
https://www.dogbitelaw.com/Dog%20Atta...%20Clifton.pdf

The number of pit bull attacks, particularly on children, is disproportionately large compared to any other breed.
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Old 08-10-10, 05:54 AM
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Originally Posted by KD5NRH View Post
https://www.dogbitelaw.com/Dog%20Atta...%20Clifton.pdf

The number of pit bull attacks, particularly on children, is disproportionately large compared to any other breed.
From what I can tell, this isn't because of a problem with the breed but rather because:
  1. At least in our neck of the woods, pits are one of the most popular breeds so they will naturally be involved in more attacks
  2. Many people use the term "pit bull" to refer to any dog they are afraid of. I can't tell you how many times I've heard a dog referred to as a pit (including two of my own) when they obviously weren't. This leads to overreporting
  3. The reputation of pits draws morons and irresponsible types with compensation issues like a magnet. I'm not saying pit owners are generally like that. Rather that people with these issues are drawn more to pits than to other breeds. But idiots are dangerous regardless of what type of dog they have or whatever they are doing
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Old 08-10-10, 09:58 AM
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has anyone been attacked recently? as in physically tasted by the hound? i'd love to know what happened.
whenever i have eben chased the dog just seems to be in it for sport..
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Old 08-10-10, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by KD5NRH View Post
https://www.dogbitelaw.com/Dog%20Atta...%20Clifton.pdf

The number of pit bull attacks, particularly on children, is disproportionately large compared to any other breed.
EXACTLY. In my opinion American Bull Terriers are a junk breed of dog. Many are bred by breeders who breed them with fighting/aggression in mind. Just search all of the attacks across the country as well as cities banning (for good reason) them.

But like Banerjek said, thankfully they are not fast runners. I have a very large Labradoodle (sp?) in my neighborhood who is larger than my Rottweiler. He is kept in his yard by an invisible fence and always gives me chase across his yard. When I come over into his driveway to pet him,what does he do? He backs away. I think my bike scares him. Dogs mostly like the thrill of the chase. When you stop, the chase is off unless you are dealing with a viscious dog.
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Old 08-10-10, 11:18 AM
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Originally Posted by monporn View Post
has anyone been attacked recently? as in physically tasted by the hound? i'd love to know what happened.
whenever i have eben chased the dog just seems to be in it for sport..
Yes, but it was not cycling related.

This happened in March, but bite did enough damage that there is still pain when my hand is in certain positions. Whole arm got infected and made me sick so it was necessary to seek treatment. They shot me full of antibiotics and I had to take horse pills for a couple weeks, and things are good now.

If you're wondering what to expect, it is likely that you'll be overtreated if you seek any type of medical attention. Expect medical people to ask about dogs and owners regardless of circumstances (i.e. you make it crystal clear it was your own damn fault and that no one or their animals should be involved). If you don't provide as much information as they want, expect the cops to follow up. Most of the categories on the dog bite form are for injuries so minor (down to skin not broken) that no one would even think about them if they were sustained any other way.
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Old 08-10-10, 11:32 AM
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Originally Posted by banerjek View Post
From what I can tell, this isn't because of a problem with the breed but rather because:
  1. Many people use the term "pit bull" to refer to any dog they are afraid of. I can't tell you how many times I've heard a dog referred to as a pit (including two of my own) when they obviously weren't. This leads to overreporting
I've seen this too. Once while out doing astronomy stuff a boxer from a neighbors house came out to see what was going on. He was very gentle and ended up falling asleep beside the tarp we had out and spent the night there. The next day there were reports of the DANGEROUS PIT BULL out on the field.
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