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How to 100% stop strange dog attacks while on a walk with my dogs?


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I've carried hornet spray in a can. It shoots 20 feet or more in a thick stream, not a mist, so it's doesn't blow back on you like normal pepper spray can. I guess if the wind was quite strong but I haven't had that issue. It smells bad and stings so I just aim at the dog that is running at me and spray. I've never had one continue running at me but I'm not sure if the dogs that have charged me were absolutely intent on killing my dogs or were more half-hearted. I know that they are charging at us and there were no owners present to call the dogs off.

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This is turning in quite the blood thirsty thread.... ;)

I assume everybody on this forum has dogs, how many were actually attacked by strange dogs in a way that made described weapons necessary?

Even the attack the topic starter described, though scary, was averted by some screaming and waving of hands.

Certainly in an urban environment I would have more worries about the two legged rather than the four legged creatures...

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Well, I've never been attacked. BUT... my reactive dog tries to drive off strange, off-leash dogs charging us, and since he's on a leash and I'm stuck with him, it puts me in a dangerous position. (Spent an evening in the ER once, gettings stitches because a "friendly" pit bull mix took Buddy's warning growls as a sign to dive at him. I just happened to be there, too.)

 

The dogs might not be intent on causing me bodily harm, but I don't get to opt out of what might be a potentially mild dog-scuffle, and teeth and claws are not something I like to be near. Plus, once a dog (neighbor's dog who has bitten humans) came out to drive us off, and Buddy actually got hog-tied in his own leash while the other dog continued to go at him. Poor guy was lying whimpering and unable to protect himself in the street.

 

I'd say most approaching dogs have no malicious intent, and they're just a pain in the neck. But if there were a way to assuredly stop them in their tracks without harming them, I'd be very happy to have it.

 

Mary

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This is turning in quite the blood thirsty thread.... ;)

I assume everybody on this forum has dogs, how many were actually attacked by strange dogs in a way that made described weapons necessary?

Even the attack the topic starter described, though scary, was averted by some screaming and waving of hands.

Certainly in an urban environment I would have more worries about the two legged rather than the four legged creatures...

 

No, I haven't been attacked. I consider myself more dog savvy than most as I have worked with them (in not so nice situations) for more than 20 years. So I think I would react more appropriately than the OP but you never know until it happens. Up until last year (when I moved to the country-YAY! :D ) I did not walk my dogs around my neighborhood. JQP is what I like to call AI (Arrogantly Ignorant) about dogs. There are lots of free roaming or fence/chain frustrated dogs & one never knows what they might encounter.

 

My mother- the polar opposite of dog savvy- has 2 yorkies & lives in a condo in the North East. She reacted to a charging "pitbull", dragging the leash behind BTW, much the way the OP did only she didn't get away. One of her dogs was savaged by the pitbull & barely survived. I have told her over & over again to carry something with her- pepper spray, a stick, something to use against an attacker...I really doubt any of that would help because her attitude is flight & that immediately puts you in the position of victim when it comes to dogs.

 

While I don't advocate spraying dogs with poison like hornet spray, I think that it does help to be prepared & have a plan. I agree that our attitude is the most important factor in whether we will be attacked. I think in Europe people are much more dog savvy & so I guess you probably have much less of an issue than we do here.

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One of my dogs was attacked on a sidewalk by a brainless twit of a Labradummy, who fortunately only inflicted a puncture wound on my dog's ass. Actually, I had both dogs with me and Cujo came at us so quickly, there wasn't a damn thing that I could have done. So, I found myself standing on a public sidewalk with 2 dogs that were chewing on each other necks and a third dog that was standing on the periphery air snapping. My dogs, both in the 40-45 lb range, weren't budging and I was becoming entangled in the leashes. Pepper spray would have been useless in this situation (the dog was just there), as was my foot, because the Labradummy was so out of its mind that it would have redirected onto my leg. Incident, ended when dummy owner collected dummy dog, how she didn't get bitten, I'll never know--or maybe she and Cujo were bitten and she chose to treat it herself because she is an MD.

 

I have never felt so stinking helpless in my life.

 

These days, I NEVER walk both dogs together in the 'hood and I seldom walk them together outside the hood. Too bad for us. After the incident, I spoke with the director of animal services, who sang the praises of pepper spray to the high heavens, but he did tell me that I had to "practice". One animal control officer recommends wasp spray. I now carry a large stick. Which I've had to smack on the ground on 2 occasions to scare off approaching dogs--the very persistant bull dog came very close to getting clobbered

 

 

The Labradummy is now gone and it appears that the neighbors acquired a new Labrasomething which stands outside in the front yard behind a too low fence and reactively barks at my dogs from 2 houses away (a few hundred feet) while we are loading/ unloading from the car. Doesn't bode well--it's only a matter of time before that dog goes over the fence.

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I agree that it is much easier to manage these situations if you are only walking one dog. I was able to simply drag Zeph behind me and intimidate the other dog into backing off. However, once I got Seelie, it became physically impossible to get both of them behind me, out of harm's way, and present a suitably intimidating front for the attacking dog. I hate that feeling of trying to keep my other dog out of it and being helpless to break up an attack one my dogs. Like the above poster mentioned, I often choose to just walk with one of them because of that.

 

Honestly, though, in that situation, I can't realistically see myself effectively using a stun gun or spray. My hands are full with my dogs. I think I will continue to just try to be aware of the environment and not walk more dogs than I can handle in a fight at once.

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One of my dogs was attacked on a sidewalk by a brainless twit of a Labradummy, who fortunately only inflicted a puncture wound on my dog's ass. Actually, I had both dogs with me and Cujo came at us so quickly, there wasn't a damn thing that I could have done. So, I found myself standing on a public sidewalk with 2 dogs that were chewing on each other necks and a third dog that was standing on the periphery air snapping. My dogs, both in the 40-45 lb range, weren't budging and I was becoming entangled in the leashes. Pepper spray would have been useless in this situation (the dog was just there), as was my foot, because the Labradummy was so out of its mind that it would have redirected onto my leg. Incident, ended when dummy owner collected dummy dog, how she didn't get bitten, I'll never know--or maybe she and Cujo were bitten and she chose to treat it herself because she is an MD.

 

I have never felt so stinking helpless in my life.

 

These days, I NEVER walk both dogs together in the 'hood and I seldom walk them together outside the hood. Too bad for us. After the incident, I spoke with the director of animal services, who sang the praises of pepper spray to the high heavens, but he did tell me that I had to "practice". One animal control officer recommends wasp spray. I now carry a large stick. Which I've had to smack on the ground on 2 occasions to scare off approaching dogs--the very persistant bull dog came very close to getting clobbered

 

 

The Labradummy is now gone and it appears that the neighbors acquired a new Labrasomething which stands outside in the front yard behind a too low fence and reactively barks at my dogs from 2 houses away (a few hundred feet) while we are loading/ unloading from the car. Doesn't bode well--it's only a matter of time before that dog goes over the fence.

 

Yes, my mom doesn't walk the 2 yorkies together much anymore (especially since she's sent one down to me in FL for boot camp over the fall). I think the loud crack of the stun baton may be enough to startle dogs out of attack mode. At least that's what I'll bank on & if it doesn't work & the dog gets up close & personal I think I'll have no problem seeing how the actual touch of the baton works to deter them.

 

The only reason my mom's little dog was not dismembered before her eyes (she was helpless to stop it) was because the PB's owner was running after it trying to catch it (the 8yr old walking it accidentally dropped the leash). So while a deterrent is great. Having something to end an attack is just as important to me. In my years I have seen the outcome of uninterrupted dog attacks & it is not pretty. One tragedy-2 GSD's vs a lovely Greyhound-still haunts me to this day- RIP Arrow. If the owner had something to stop the offenders her dog would not have suffered as he did & she wouldn't have to live with the images of what was done to him.

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Hmmm. All very disturbing.

A couple of thoughts about aggressive dogs:

 

I walk with a cane. I'm pretty good with it as I used to practice with a bo in a dojo. A crack upside the head will deter most dogs. Unfortunately, not all. A pit, a Rottie or a Labrador will likely not even notice it if they're out for blood. It takes a bullet to stop one of those.

 

However, there isn't the pit or Lab born that can catch a Border Collie in a footrace. In the case of a dog attack where you have nothing to defend your dog or yourself with, if you aren't on a busy street and your dog has a recall, drop the lead and let him run away. Most will keep you in sight and circle back around to you. But the heavier dogs will get winded and loose interest.

 

Oddly enough, many dogs will flee as from a raging lion if you pop an umbrella open at them. If you get a sturdy one it can double as a walking stick. The pointy thing that sticks out of the top can deal a wicked jab, too.

 

If you are familiar with the dog and know that it is just a jerk and not a killer, you can make yourself look as big as possible, stamp your feet, lower your voice to a basso-profundo and bellow "SIT!" They probably won't sit, but you will convey the impression that you and your dog are not easy meat. It's worked for countless repair/ delivery persons, and once for me when beset by a pair of loose GSD males - they turned tail and skedaddled.

 

I used to carry pepper spray, but my neighborhood has got fairly tame, and there are drawbacks as described above as well.

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"bo in a dojo"? Wild, wild stuff GB. Unfortunately, my BC is old and chunky, so he wouldn't be getting away from anyone anytime soon. Worse than that, he is an alpha male and would eagerly take on any attacker not realizing he is way past his salad years, so to speak.

 

What the heck does GSD stand for? German Shepherd Dog?

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"bo in a dojo"? Wild, wild stuff GB. Unfortunately, my BC is old and chunky, so he wouldn't be getting away from anyone anytime soon. Worse than that, he is an alpha male and would eagerly take on any attacker not realizing he is way past his salad years, so to speak.

 

What the heck does GSD stand for? German Shepherd Dog?

Yup.

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OK, this goes out to all the most dog-savvy people on the forum.

 

Assume I'm walking my one, somewhat reactive dog who would rather the other dog left him alone, will growl and stiffen and do all manner of body language to get the other dog to leave, but who occasionally finds himself on a leash while a large, threatening dog takes him on. My dog would rather just walk away, but he will not run awayif the other dog takes him on.

 

Here comes a large, strange dog whose owner let him slip his leash, or whose owner is just an idiot. The dog may be goofy and friendly, oblivious and obnoxious, or that rare dog who will respond to warning growls with actual intent to fight.

 

I can't carry a stick (I'm already carrying a leash in one hand and a full bag of poop in the other). I won't try pepper spray or wasp poison or a stun gun because honestly, they're more likely to hurt me than the other dog. I'm just not coordinated enough to pull the juggling thing off, either.

 

WHAT DO I DO?

 

Seriously, I want to hear advice from the experts, so that if I end up in this situation again, my behavior better helps prevent me from ending up in the ER.

 

Should I face the oncoming dog rather than moving away?

Should I give Buddy slack on the leash, and risk his getting tangled up in it?

Should I tighten the leash and put myself closer to Buddy and the potential fight?

Should I speak in a big, booming, man-like voice, saying, "SIT!" or "NO!?"

Should I speak calmly and soothingly?

Should I drop Buddy's leash and run at the dog in a weird, crazy-lady mode?

Should I unhook Buddy's leash so the fight is fair?

 

Give me your very best advice. I may just be able to use it someday!

 

Mary

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WHAT DO I DO?

 

I've been in this situation more times than I care to think about with my reactive dog. If I can't escape by doing a quick 180 or whatever, I make the leash go totally slack, tell my dog, "say hi", and pray. The situation has never progressed past growling and posturing (but obviously can) because my dog really really doesn't want to fight.

 

Tightening up a leash will make a dog react.

 

And I do manage to hold a leash, a large stick, and a bag of crap. You can always drop the bag. Or throw it at the approaching dog. Been there, done that.

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I used to live in a bad ares where large and unpredictable dogs ran free, often rushing us and attempting to attack me and my dogs. My solution was a tactical baton (note: this is different from a stun baton).

 

This is something military and police carry. It is a telescoping steel baton that slides into itself and is only about a foot long to carry. With a (practiced) flip of the wrist you snap it out to full length of 26" or so. They come in different lengths. It makes a serious *snap* sound when it snaps into place. I have never, ever had to hit a dog with it. The sound and sudden appearance of it is more than enough to send dogs running. It even worked when two large pit bulls attacked my dog outside their yard. They had him down in seconds, but when I snapped out the baton and swung it over my head they were gone before I could bring it down. I got mine at a swap meet for $20. Very good investment.

Good Luck

--D'Elle

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My solution was a tactical baton (

 

I can't believe I forgot about those. The AWOs at work carry them, since they are the ones out impounding dogs at large. Dogs are always scared of them, except my dogs ("throw it! throw it! throw it!").

 

RDM

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Mary, I am no expert, but this is why I never walk the dogs by myself. DH and I both always make sure there are two people present. (Sometimes it is the two of us or someone else) When random unleahsed dogs approach (which happens here in Phoenix) one person holds the leads while the other walks towards the dog coming at the person with the dogs on leash. Making noise and telling the approaching dog to "git/get" while waving your arms has worked well for us.

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Well, I was intrigued by the telescoping steel baton. So I googled it and came up with this - complete with demo video.

 

http://www.tbotech.com/telescopicbaton.htm

 

I am almost embarrassed to post this as people are gonna start to think I walk my dogs in full body armor (one for me & one for them! B))

 

But while stun baton shopping I ran across THIS. I don't necessarily agree with pepper spray for the reasons mentioned but the baton story is interesting.

 

FWIW, you can get longer stun batons that retract & some have sirens too. I just feel like the cracking sound is the best deterrent. A regular steel baton is gonna be heavy & require strength & space to swing. Someone like my mom (she's 61) may not be able to wield it effectively. The Stun model just has to make contact with the offender. On the model posted there isn't a wrist strap like the stun model has so I can see it getting dropped in the scuffle too.

 

We joke at the clinic that the best doggie defense is probably a pair of the orange handled (Millers Forge) nail trimmers. Just the site of them sends all dogs, even Rotties & Pitbulls, running. :lol:

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.............

WHAT DO I DO?

 

Should I face the oncoming dog rather than moving away?

 

Should I speak in a big, booming, man-like voice, saying, "SIT!" or "NO!?"

 

 

*points up*

 

Never try to run away. Make yourself as big and commanding as possible. Do not scream or screech or use an upper-chest panicky voice. Bellow from the gut.

 

As for the leash ... probably depends. Is the oncoming dog a genuine threat, or just an obnoxious goober? Tightening a leash as a rule escalates tension. I'd recommend keeping some slack in the leash but not letting so much go that your dog has the whole 6-foot length to tangle up in. Since your dog doesn't sound like he's going to advance matters himself, I'd think that leaves *you* free to take command of the situation. Do so. This is little different from self-defense class. The main difference is that your antagonist is an animal and you're defending yourself and someone else. (Your dog.)

 

To me, it's all about attitude. Protect yourself, protect your dog. Be prepared, be bold. Your choices are fight or flight: flight is not an option when your opponent has teeth and can run 25-30 miles per hour. Think self defense. Odds are, most dogs you'll meet won't have the stomach to face a commanding human presence.

 

That's my take, anyhow. ;)

Cheers ~

 

Gloria

P.S.

For the record, I've never experienced a dog attack, but I have had bears in camp. ;)

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I have had 2 scary experiences that cause me to consider carry protection.

 

Once, when out walking my then elderly Siberian and my then new Papillon we had a Rotti come charging at us at full speed. His owners were standing and talking and he saw us and moved so fast his lead slipped from their hands. I saw him coming at full speed and had a few seconds to realize I had no way to protect both dogs...I grabbed the Pap and tucked him under my arm and stood in front of the elderly big dog and turned to face him, heart pounding, ready to kick or whatever. It turns out he was super friendly and was running full speed to come visit! What a relief. But I realized at that moment that if his feet landed on me with malice as opposed to excessive friendliness that he would have just grabbed the small dog and I couldn't have stopped him. It made me think.

 

A couple of years later my husband and I were walking all 3 of our dogs (2 Paps and a BC) down the road, and when we passed a house with a 6' privacy fence a pair of dogs started going nuts behind it. I had walked down that road many times and never heard a dog. Suddenly, the dogs hit the fence hard enough that the boards started to break they they were coming through...a big shepherd mix and a pitty type and they were behaving very aggressively. I was moving away as quick as we could and my husband was backing us up and they were moving in a scary way towards him when fortunately the owner came out and was able to call them off. Later I found the dogs belonged to an adult child of the owners of the house who was staying with them. We never walked down that street again. I am quite sure if the owner hadn't come out the would have bitten my husband.

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Great thread with lots of useful info.

 

My BC has had some minor scuffles with other dogs that want to play aggressively and I think he can take care of himself in most situations, but what I am most worried about is the pit bulls that are common in my area.

I ran into a lady the other day who recently had a small shelty attacked and had over 20 staples put in his side.

We've had pit types in my yard, before I got my BC(2 years ago), that got loose from their owners. I have small children, so on one occasion I tried to shoo him away with my arms in the air, but he stood his ground growling. I called the cops and they took care of it. After calling the cops at least 3 times, I havnt seen the dog since.

 

Sorry to bash the pit and I may be ignorant of the breed, but I just dont see the point or allure of owning one.

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We joke at the clinic that the best doggie defense is probably a pair of the orange handled (Millers Forge) nail trimmers. Just the site of them sends all dogs, even Rotties & Pitbulls, running. :lol:

 

 

ROTFLMAO!! Maybe carry a bottle of shampoo too! Instead of saying "shoo" or "go away" to an approaching dog I should try "bath". :lol:

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Don't mean to get brutal here so I am apologizing in advance....

 

And I AM NOT discriminating against bully breeds, just being realistic...

 

but if anything with a large jaw manages to actually get its mouth around your dog and latches on..think air supply people and eyes...like a shark..I wish I could tell you that this info was not from experience but it was..think survival, leash(if you have one available) around the other dogs neck...air supply cut off..(i'm talking about a pit here)...or go for the eyes....or try and hurt/distract them in someway on there rear or haunches...

 

I know of two experiences..one was mine and one was a friends..

 

For me..un-identified pit was strolling the neighborhood...seemed freindly...not showing signs of being openly aggressive...was out walking my pup(9 months) and my older dog(4 years)...this dog smelledmy older dog...nothing...smelled my pup and with seconds lunged at it and had my pups head in his mouth...pup was screaming...this pit's head was huge and he was locked onto my pup...I tried everything to pry his jaws off, not even a budge..then out od no where my other dog went after and bit the pit's rear end...I tink this surprised the dog long enough to let go....I straddled the dog with all my migh and it's owner, thank god, was running down the street to collect there dog........my pup had 15 stitches and a torn off ear..I'm so thankful that was it...I have trained alot of dogs and taught many others over the years and I KNOW that dog would not have let go if it wasn't for my older dog shocking him from behind...

 

My friend who had a run in with a loose Rottie was NOT so lucky....she was alone...dog latched onto hers...she finally was able to choke the dog off of hers but her dog had to be put downdue to injuries...

 

I know for everyone who has a dog that this is there worst nightmare...I felt it when I saw it all unfolding in front of my eyes.....you need to think fast and think survival...if it comes to that..

 

For other dog fights I have helped break up squirting water can work wonders,they now sell "citronella" spray cans that are supposed to be useful in breaking up dog fights without harming the animal..but I usually carry a squirt water bottle for myself and for minor affairs I'm surprised how often a squirt in the face with cold water worksto break it up...I also will get right in there and grab a tail...but I wouldn't recomend that to others.... :s

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