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Hello everyone. So I was out on the trail today after a 3 month break due to a busy school schedule. Ive been riding these trails off an on for about a year so i am somewhat familiar with them. The local trails by my house are utilized by cyclists and non cyclists. Towards the end of my ride, the trail head was about 2min away, I came across a turn and there was a guy with a small child and two very large German Shepards. One of them lunged for me and I almost went off the side of the trail into a pretty steep ditch. I was almost certain that the dog was going to take a chuck out of my leg. Luckily, I was able to keep from going into the ditch without shedding any skin and the Shepard returned to its owner. I was so full of adrenaline and remounted and shouted "get your dog on a leash". I just wanted to get out of there as soon as i could. I thought about calling animal control and reporting him but instead, just went home. Should I have reported him or not, or is this just what comes with the territory of mtb'ing?
any advice would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks
Mondo
 

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What's the leash laws in your area? Around here, a dog can be off the leash only on your property. We have agility competitions here every now and again, so obviously, lots of dogs off the leash. But as soon as the dog is off your property, and not under control, it can be considered a stray. That includes the popular walking trails. If this is going to be an issue, get some dog repellent. Don't use pepper spray meant for humans, it will permanently blind the dog.........and it's not their fault they weren't trained properly, no need to hurt them.

I don't mind the dogs so much, but the piles of fresh poop in the middle of the trail are really irritating.
 

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heff® said:
What's the leash laws in your area? Around here, a dog can be off the leash only on your property. We have agility competitions here every now and again, so obviously, lots of dogs off the leash. But as soon as the dog is off your property, and not under control, it can be considered a stray. That includes the popular walking trails. If this is going to be an issue, get some dog repellent. Don't use pepper spray meant for humans, it will permanently blind the dog.........and it's not their fault they weren't trained properly, no need to hurt them.

I don't mind the dogs so much, but the piles of fresh poop in the middle of the trail are really irritating.
The dog was about to bite the flesh off his thigh and you're telling him not to hurt the dog?

Regardless if the dog is trained or not, it's the riders right to protect himself. The priority is safety first then worry about dealing with the owner.

Pepper spray will not permanently blind the dog. What makes you think their eyes are any more sensitive than ours?
 

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That's not what I said. I said get a spray designed for dogs (same one as used for bears). Dogs don't have tear ducts like humans, so they can't flush the capcazin out like a human can. It just sits in there and burns their eyes until they're blinded. Regular human pepper spray, because of the strength, causes a lot of pain, and in cases of extremely agressive dogs, can actually make the dog react more violently. The dog doesn't know any better, he's just doing what he does naturally. They need to be trained not to attack. My last dog was a sweetheart, very well behaved, trained, would stop on a dime you told her to. But she hated skateboards, and it was difficult walking her downtown, those idiots would buzz up behind you and pass so close they'd bump your arm on the way by. She almost got a couple of them. My current border collie is fine with bikes, skateboards, anything resembling a human, but not other dogs. Sometimes he'll just ignore them, others he'll eventually be friends with after time, but some, he air snaps at immediately and tries to walk away. Not much I can do, except warn oncoming dogs and try to stay back far enough. However, if I clearly say "control your dog, mine gets aggressive around other dogs" and they still let their dog loose to say hi, I take no responsibility. I told you not to do that, you did it anyway.

Anyway, yes, do get dog repellent. It works. Aside from the chemical that won't permanently injure the dog (which you could get a hefty fine for, even if it was defense) it sprays differently. Pepper spray for humans is a direct target spray. You have to aim fairly well. Mace for dogs sprays in a wide mist, you don't have to be dead on with it..Also a shorter range, so there's less possibility of the owner getting caught by a badly aimed spray (and thus landing you an assault charge).
 

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I'm with Dictatorsaurus on this one--I frequently ride with my son and I would not be thinking about the dog's safety if something were to happen. I carry a knife whenever I'm in the woods...
 

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You're both missing the point...

GtrGuy said:
I'm with Dictatorsaurus on this one--I frequently ride with my son and I would not be thinking about the dog's safety if something were to happen. I carry a knife whenever I'm in the woods...
Heff isn't suggesting that you should be concerned about the dog's safety on the trail while it's out of control (above your own safety). He's suggesting that with just a wee bit of forethought, you can protect yourself and help protect an innocent dog from an ignorant dog owner by using bear spray instead of human spray.

Dogs on trail: I've ridden with lots of dogs on trail. Some of them are trained and riding with them is awesome. Most of them suck. They may be great dogs but they're untrained and don't ride well with the group.
 

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See dogs all the time, when there properly trained trail dogs then there shouldn't be a issue. You possibly snuck up on them so quickly that the dog was simply protecting his owners.
 

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While I disagree with heff's overly sensitive attitude towards aggressive dogs, I do agree that you should use an animal specific pepper spray, just because it'll more effective. It's fine to keep in mind the dog just hasn't been trained well, and it's the owner's fault, but ultimately it's the dog attacking you, and don't be afraid to hurt, injure, or kill the animal if it means protecting yourself.

I've been attacked by dogs while riding, I've been bitten by dogs while riding, and I've been chased by dogs while riding, and have learned a couple things.

1. Try yelling "NO" to the dog. A lot of dogs will respond to that, and stop doing what they're doing.
2. Dogs can be pretty damn fast. Be aware that out running them often won't work.
3. If you have an aggressive dog ahead of your, or a an aggressive dog which is chasing you which you can't lose and is getting closer, get off your bike, and put the bike between you and the dog. Don't look directly in the dog's eyes, and try backing away.
4. If the dog attacks anyway, try to wrap the dog up in the bike, and get the dog on the ground with you and bike on top of it. Don't try to restrain it, try to kill it. Either choke it or compress the dog's chest to keep it from breathing.
 

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What a coincidence. I was just on the Dogs forum, and this dog just posted that he was out walking some trails with his owners (a guy and a small child) when some mountain biker came bombin' around a corner towards them. The dog was concerned about the safety of the child so he gave the biker a little attitude (dog style), and he said that seemed to work because the mountain biker scurried away. Most of the other dog's agreed that this was the proper way to deal with mountain bikers (who are well known to be easily frightened), but a couple of them were insistent he should of ripped him a new one.
 

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trailville said:
What a coincidence. I was just on the Dogs forum, and this dog just posted that he was out walking some trails with his owners (a guy and a small child) when some mountain biker came bombin' around a corner towards them. The dog was concerned about the safety of the child so he gave the biker a little attitude (dog style), and he said that seemed to work because the mountain biker scurried away. Most of the other dog's agreed that this was the proper way to deal with mountain bikers (who are well known to be easily frightened), but a couple of them were insistent he should of ripped him a new one.
:D ...........
 

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It's a bad situation. You did not have much time to react and I doubt you will be carrying a knife or any pepper spray in one hand while riding. Sure you can carry them in your pocket or bag for the situation when you can at least have a few seconds to bring it out for the additional protection.

I think I would have done what you have done which is shout at the owner to get them on a leash. I have in one case while walking my own dog, another dog started for me but I was prepared and give it a good swift kick in the face while the owner was in full view.

You could consider going to the park/trail office or the city if they manage the park and have them try to post more signs educating owners (I suppose that only applies to people that are considerate and read the signs) and also enforcing the rule.
 

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trailville said:
What a coincidence. I was just on the Dogs forum, and this dog just posted that he was out walking some trails with his owners (a guy and a small child) when some mountain biker came bombin' around a corner towards them. The dog was concerned about the safety of the child so he gave the biker a little attitude (dog style), and he said that seemed to work because the mountain biker scurried away. Most of the other dog's agreed that this was the proper way to deal with mountain bikers (who are well known to be easily frightened), but a couple of them were insistent he should of ripped him a new one.
good one. :D
 

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bad mechanic said it best if you scared the dog it's just reacting, if that dog was aggresive you would probably be nursing stitches and consulting with a lawyer right now. Just be thankful nothing bad came of it, the owner is at fault if your going to walk dogs they should be trained or at least in control with a leash your response was correct I feel ya I too have had dogs chase me almost make me eat dirt. It really pisses you off and I wouldn't blame you if you gave it a swift kick right in the mouth, other than that how was your ride? Look at it this way at least you were outside riding I'm at home with a broken foot and won't be riding any time soon.
 

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Carrying proper dog spray is the right thing to do. But I can't ride around hanging all kinds of canisters and sprays on my camelbak strap. So I have regular pepper spray which you could use on any living creature including humans.

I've seen some really great, well trained dogs on trails that are well behaved and obedient. But I've seen some nasty ones as well. The dog's instinct is to chase and guess what? My instinct is to protect myself and kick the dog's ass.

Worrying about lawsuits and animal rights would be the last thing on my mind while fighting off a vicious dog. Ultimately the dog owner is really the one to blame. But the law prevents me from getting off the bike and beating the owner up for not training his dog well.

I love animals and I'm not advocating hurting animals for no reason. But when safety is a concern, one has to take action.
 

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I just love the friendly dogs that expect everyone to rub it. You know the dog that runs over and stops directly in front of you with those excited little puppy dog eyes.
 
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