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Old 08-02-2013, 12:24 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Dealing with aggressive dogs when running

Where I run is fairly remote - mostly farm houses and the like. That being said almost all of them have dogs and they are allowed to roam pretty freely. Normally this is not a concern at all. They will come out and jog with you until you are past the property line and then trail off. I have simply ignored them in the past.

There is one particular beagle that has been a bit more aggressive then most. He will growl and bare teeth. I have avoided eye contact and simply moved on.

Yesterday he came out at mach 2 on an intercept course. I saw him coming and noted it was a little odd and paid attention. He jumped hard and had I not moved my arm into him he may have actually bit at my upper arm or shoulder though it was pretty quick and I do not know. Once he hit the ground I turned towards him and offered a hand nicely - I figured I would pet him and make friends and solve this. The dog had no interest in beig friends and continued to growl. His owner was there and came running out and attempted corrective action and to make sure I was not bit but even as I moved down the road the dog attempted to get in front of me and challenge. His owner did manage to snag him and control him but it was by brute force.

Its a smaller dog (I would guess 40lbs or so) and his owner and I had friendly coversation for the few moments I was there. My question is how do you deal with aggressive dogs? I really do not want to shoot the animal and would risk myself getting bit but by next year I will have my daughter in a jogging stroller and am not willing to pose the same risk to her.
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Old 08-02-2013, 12:35 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The three rules to Running near strange dogs.

One... do not run near strange dogs... walk.

Two.... do not run near strange dogs... walk.

Three .... do not talk about fight club

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Old 08-02-2013, 12:37 PM   #3 (permalink)
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In all seriousness. If you see a dog while you are running, even if it is with it's "owner" (and especially if it's owner is a woman). Stop running and WALK!!!

If the dog is alone definitely walk past the dog.

In the first situation Running could be perceived as threatening. In the second you could be perceived as prey.

Also NEVER TRY TO PET A STRANGE DOG!!!!!! Ever!

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Old 08-02-2013, 12:38 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Get a can of pepper spray or bear spray. No one has to die, cops don't need to be involved and that will distract most smaller animals enough to stop being a safety issue. HOWEVER.....pay attention to wind, if you are down wind you might get a bit or worse your daughter gets a whiff but if you spray while running you should be ok.

Someone might recommend something like pepperballs/reballs but that opens up a whole different can of worms. Around here I am more protected by the law while carrying a firearm than a pocket knife or paintball marker. If used in self defense I am more protected by using a firearm than anything other than my bare hands unless I am in my own home.
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Old 08-02-2013, 12:43 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Get a can of pepper spray or bear spray. No one has to die, cops don't need to be involved and that will distract most smaller animals enough to stop being a safety issue. HOWEVER.....pay attention to wind, if you are down wind you might get a bit or worse your daughter gets a whiff but if you spray while running you should be ok.

Someone might recommend something like pepperballs/reballs but that opens up a whole different can of worms. Around here I am more protected by the law while carrying a firearm than a pocket knife or paintball marker. If used in self defense I am more protected by using a firearm than anything other than my bare hands unless I am in my own home.
Here the magic words, when involving dogs, is I was in fear for my safety or the safety of others. If the dog poses a threat that a reasonable person would agree is a threat I am in full legal rights to shoot it.

That being said I would much rather it not come to that. I carry a pistol while running as it is but am rather unwilling to use it to prevent myself from being bitten (the first time)

Schmitti you are of course right that stopping and trying to make friends with the dog was an error. It was a spur of the moment "I'm going to solve this" decision that was not a good one. I will have to try walking by it next time.
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"Use peaceful means where they are appropriate; but where they are not appropriate, do not hesitate to resort to more forceful - Thupten Gyatso (the Dalai Lama, 1932)

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Old 08-02-2013, 12:56 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I learned a long time ago that the only time you "make friends" with a dog is if you are walking and the only thing you are doing is talking nicely to a dog that is standing it's ground and not advancing. All you want to do with a dag is NOT be perceived as a threat. Yelling at a dog, running at it/by it/away from it, throwing stuff at it... all threatening and can set off different dogs.

If you can walk by on the other side of the street this is often best. Many dogs perceive the edge of road as a boundary (maybe not so much in the country)

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Old 08-02-2013, 01:09 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Small water pistol with an Ammonia/Water mix. One squirt in the face and he'll not get anywhere near you again. Does not stop them from barking, running to the road and making a fool of himself but he'll no longer get close enough to do any harm. I used to ride bicycle near a home where their dog would charge me and nip at my heels. A runner friend of mine gave me the advice.
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Old 08-02-2013, 01:20 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Bring some jerky. When you get to this dogs "territory", slow down to a walking pace and toss it a little treat. A few days of that and you will become the "food guy" not the fastmoving threat. Do not pepperspray or shoot the dog; unless you have serious injuries you will be bringing a world of trouble down on yourself.
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Old 08-02-2013, 01:42 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Frizzle Fry View Post
Bring some jerky. When you get to this dogs "territory", slow down to a walking pace and toss it a little treat. A few days of that and you will become the "food guy" not the fastmoving threat. Do not pepperspray or shoot the dog; unless you have serious injuries you will be bringing a world of trouble down on yourself.
You know that is a great idea. While I feel I am ok taking more forceful action these people are my neighbors and I have no desire to shoot a dog for being a dog. Thank You

Give you an idea about how things go in this county. I once called animal control because my ex-wife was at home and there was a large dog growling at the door. She could handle NOTHING for herself and called me to call animal control. Animal control's first question was if I owned a gun. Then they simply suggested I shoot it. The dog wandered off.
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"Do not overcome by the evil, but overcome, in the good, the evil" - Romans 12:21 - Young's Literal Translation

"Use peaceful means where they are appropriate; but where they are not appropriate, do not hesitate to resort to more forceful - Thupten Gyatso (the Dalai Lama, 1932)

"It is not the will to win that matters - everyone has that. It's the will to prepare to win that matters" Coach Paul 'Bear' Bryant.

"The ink of scholars is more precious than the blood of martyrs" - Muhammed
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Old 08-02-2013, 01:57 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Call county animal control and complain about an aggressive dog on the loose at that address? Maybe no changes are made, but at least you followed the proper channels first before engaging in mortal combat with the dog.

Also, you are either very short or that beagle was a heck of a jumper to get at your upper arm/shoulder. We had a beagle when I was a kid and while he could run pretty quick, he wasn't much in the vertical leap department.
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