Author Topic: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?  (Read 2918 times)

RogerA

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Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« on: 16:05:37, 08/01/18 »
I've had a look through the forum and can see threads about how to respond to sheep, cows and horses. I can see threads about whether to dogs with you on a walk.

I dont see one about how to deal with dogs that you come across.

The reason I was looking is that over the Christmas break I was out walking in Derbyshire, in an area I dont know very well but was keeping to well marked public footpaths staying on marked routes between yellow waymarkers.
On one stretch of footpath over a field I could hear a lot of dogs barking, I was for a minute worried that I'd come across a hunt pack but it wasnt enough for that so carried on over the field. When I was about 1/3 of the way over I looked up and saw 4 unaccompanied dogs clambering over the wall at the other end and starting to run toward me barking as they came (so maybe 200-300m away). One was large and brown (I want to say Rottweiler - but I've honestly no idea) two middle sized and the other poodleish.

Now I've never previously been worried about nor by dogs, I'm not nervous around them but this put the willies right up me.

What I've asked myself over and over since is what I should have done next?

What I actually did was, heart racing, turn on my heel and walk very swiftly back the way I came then when I was out of the field, over a wall and round the back of the wall run for it until I couldnt hear the barking any more.

Has anyone had similar experience? What should I have done?
I know I'm now never going to walk that route again but should I now report to someone in case it happens to someone else?

sussamb

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #1 on: 16:20:51, 08/01/18 »
Difficult to say without having been in that position.  I know I can, and have experience of, dealing with dogs with all sorts of aggressive levels, so even if I was in your position would probably have reacted differently.  However given what you say I suspect you took a sensible and safe course of action  O0
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ninthace

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #2 on: 16:23:59, 08/01/18 »
I usually bend down and make friends with the dog(s) - avoid sustained direct eye contact though- that is a threat and if they feel scared they may bite in panic.  Most of them are all bark and no bite; the barking is often territorial and if you keep moving they will eventually give up thinking they have done a good job.  Sometimes you have to be quite firm with them though.
I did have one that actually adopted me and accompanied me on the rest of my walk.
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pauldawes

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #3 on: 16:24:28, 08/01/18 »
I’ve had a couple of similar experiences.


On first one, a massive dog of a breed I’ve never seen before jumped over a large wall as I was on a public footpath near a house. It was patently going to “have a go at me”...so I scouted area for an “equaliser” and fortunately found a stone about size and weight of a brick. The dog sensing trouble, promptly turned back, and jumped back into its own garden.


On second one a Rottweiler chained up in a farmyard snapped its restraining chain, came at me at a rate of knots, head butted my thigh (not a bite but distinctly unpleasant), then retreated about three foot, and appeared keen to have another go. Again on a public footpath. Loud shout  got farmer to come over...who was in total denial about what his dog had done.


Both times I reported to local ROI officer concerned.One paid a visit to dog owner, second dead batted it completely, telling me to report incident to police. I didn’t, but maybe should have done.

jimbob

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #4 on: 16:41:42, 08/01/18 »
In Spain the locals told me to pick up a stone if a dog came charging at you and to use it if necessary. They said the dogs were so used to getting a stone thrown at them that the act of bending down was enough to stop them in their tracks. In Britain I have used a similar bluff as most dogs are taught to chase something thrown so throwing a branch or large rock MAY distract them enough to turn their apparent aggression into a game they understand. However when it is a pack they obey a different  set of rules and you could quickly become their prey. I think in the circumstances  you did the correct thing since thinking logically, time was not on your side. It is in a way quite alarming how quickly the friendly pooch can revert to the pack predator in the wrong circumstances. A lot of careless owners are not aware of just how dangerous their cuddly pet can be.
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barewirewalker

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #5 on: 16:56:08, 08/01/18 »
I wrote something of an experience mine a few years ago, don't suppose there are many around today, who might remember this topic. Before it terrifies anyone it was written more out of humour than outrage.


Go back a few years and a few more quite colourful encounters with dogs have been recorded.


My natural instinct would say 'shoot them', having started my working life in agriculture, however as I gave up all my gun licences, not having touched any of my guns in more than 20 years, I can no longer carry out this threat, which I would be more likely to be tempted to shoot a landowner. Nasty inbred breed, with a more cowardly method of trying to preserve their territorial notions that canines.



BWW
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gunwharfman

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #6 on: 17:49:15, 08/01/18 »
As a long term off road jogger I've tried to appeal to their better nature, tried commands of "sit", kneed one or two in the chest, even punched one on the nose last year, but like us, everyones an individual. I have my likes (setters and dogs like them) and my dislikes (alsations and other butch dogs, plus Jack Russels) but mostly its the owners that wind me up, especially when they shout "its alright, he/she wont hurt you", but I know full well that they are not in control of events at all.

pauldawes

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #7 on: 18:23:32, 08/01/18 »
As a long term off road jogger I've tried to appeal to their better nature, tried commands of "sit", kneed one or two in the chest, even punched one on the nose last year, but like us, everyones an individual. I have my likes (setters and dogs like them) and my dislikes (alsations and other butch dogs, plus Jack Russels) but mostly its the owners that wind me up, especially when they shout "its alright, he/she wont hurt you", but I know full well that they are not in control of events at all.


Has general standard of dog training gone down?


We had three dogs (not at same time) as family pets when I was growing up. They all walked on lead without pulling, they all walked in close control without a lead, when allowed to run free, they all came back immediately when called. None of them ran up to strangers, barked outside, or was aggressive.


And that was the norm for where I lived.

BuzyG

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #8 on: 21:30:11, 08/01/18 »
I've had many an unplanned run in with dogs out walking.  There is normally an owner some where in the vicinity but several times not seen. 

Worth a mention.  A pack of wild dogs on the out skirts of Toulon.  They right put the willies up me.  My main thought was rabies, at the time. I walked away from them and they followed me for far too long for comfort. 

At the opposite end of the spectrum. one of the range dogs up on Kitty Tor  appeared from nowhere, jumping up in front of me and barking.  Happily I worked out instantly what was going on, so changed my direction away from the range boundary I was close to.  Several seconds later a, sleepy looking female solider, called the dog back to station and offered a rather unnecessarily apology. We all need our sleep after all.  ;)

fernman

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #9 on: 22:05:12, 08/01/18 »
During my day walks I've encountered quite a few large and boisterous dogs off the lead in woods, but nothing worse than that. I always hope I will be able to use one of my walking poles to good effect if it is necessary.

I was bitten once when I was working, it was by a little terrier that rushed up behind me and nipped me behind the knee before I realised what was happening. It was quite painful and left an enormous grey bruise from the top of my calf to halfway up my thigh.

Lemmy

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #10 on: 07:59:34, 09/01/18 »
Sausages!  ;D

sussamb

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #11 on: 08:12:21, 09/01/18 »
I was bitten once when I was working, it was by a little terrier that rushed up behind me and nipped me behind the knee before I realised what was happening. It was quite painful and left an enormous grey bruise from the top of my calf to halfway up my thigh.


Little dogs are the worst  >:(
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Dyffryn Ardudwy

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #12 on: 10:55:06, 09/01/18 »
I am more a cat person myself, and do not like dogs that much, ,as i  have been bitten four times, so i treat most dogs with extreme caution.
Back as far as 1971, a very large Alsatian ran out of its driveway in Cathay's in Cardiff, and bit my arm causing significant swelling, and requiring hospital treatment.
I still have the scars just above the elbow to remind me of the attack, its something you do not forget.

Friends of ours, in Pentyrch outside Cardiff, owned two Dobermans, one of which went for him in no certain terms, when he went to try and remove his feeding bowl, a thing he had done many times before.

They had owned the Dogs for several years, with no worries, but after that event, it was re homed.


I do not allow dogs to jump up on me, even in friendship, and i show in my body language that their affection is not welcomed.


Once you have been bitten, once or several times, you treat every dog with caution.
« Last Edit: 11:02:08, 09/01/18 by Dyffryn Ardudwy »

RogerA

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #13 on: 11:06:32, 09/01/18 »
thanks for your replies - good to know it wasnt just my unjustified nervousness - a bit worrying that so many have had problems with dogs though.

barewirewalker

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Re: Dogs - how to deal with unaccompanied dogs?
« Reply #14 on: 11:25:00, 09/01/18 »
Apart from my rather flippant previous suggestion on how to deal with unaccompanied dogs, I think it is worthwhile mentioning that irresponsible dog ownership, is perhaps one of the greatest obstructions to walkers be able to get the full access to our countryside.



Has general standard of dog training gone down?


Back in the 1950-60's when the Definitive map was being compiled, walkers were few and countryside dwellers were mostly farm workers and people who made their living from the land.


Then the Landowner's reluctance to allow access to the countryside was manifested in the 'Corruption of the Definitive map'. Nowadays this manifestation comes in many more diverse forms. The lobby group that opposes the fair sharing of the countryside between the required production of food and other raw materials and and the ever expanding Leisure Industry, is the Country Landowner's Association (CLA).  As walkers, we are concentrated into an access network that had been planned for a national population of the 1940's and immediate post war years.


There are more dog owners, rural dwellings are now 'outer suburbia', the percentage of irresponsible dog owners has increased with that population increase and perhaps by another percentage beyond that. The CLA latch onto any excuse to exclude people from the countryside, so the threat that dogs pose to livestock is a favourite, it gives the owners of land the excuse to blame access for this threat, so it is the farmer, who feels the threat.


Unlike the CLA the farmers main lobby group the National Farmer's Union (NFU) does not have a published policy on access, as far as I know, despite the fact that the Access Network is the Best Public Relations Tool the agricultural industry has for its products. Sadly the NFU do not tell their members this, walkers are losing a lot of credibility when being blamed for the actions of irresponsible dog owners.


Where I used to live when I managed a farm is a village at the east end of a hill, open access, at the west end the hill is adjacent to the suburban sprawl of our county town. The few real locals left in my old home village connected with farming call the hill 'Dogcrap Hill'.


The more we as walkers are seen as an inconvenience or even a threat in the countryside, the more true farmers will join the CLA, who claim they protect the interests of property owners on the countryside, what their national policy on access does not say is the growth of the leisure industry increases the rural economy, tons of meat and cereals go into dogfood.


Time for a stroll, perhaps I will go down to the local park and kick a dog or go and irritate the local gamekeeper, by telling him that his predecessors, 50 years ago would have shot or poisoned any 'inappropriate dog' that was in or near his bailiwick.
BWW
Their Land is in Our Country.