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Post Info TOPIC: In the aftermath of a loose dog assault... introspection


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In the aftermath of a loose dog assault... introspection


Let me start by saying this is not an indictment of pitbulls or other breeds that are recognized as prone to agressive behavior... to me that is part and parcel of irresponsible inbreeding, poor treatment and inferior training of both dog and owner to handle what can easily turn into a disastrous encounter. In fact we have a new pitbull puppy next door and innocent as any baby could be.  Time will tell if the owners are responsible enought to properly take care of it. To be honest, it does concern me that it was removed from its mother less than a month from birth as I think all dogs need that time to socialize and learn that other dogs are not threats to them. As a pack animal, dogs will naturally follow the lead of their Alpha, in domestic dogs that is generally the owner. If a dog is mistreated or trained to do certain things or is trained inappropriately there will be negative consequences.

Having said that, while walking Josie on her leash in a community playground/park with many children also present, all of which know us and Josie well, we were suddenly assaulted by a loose pitbull that charged from an unfenced yard next to the park.  The second I saw the dog I had Cindi choke up the leash to it's shortest position but it only took 3 seconds for the charging dog to cover the 100 feet and it was on us faster than we could initially react. It savagely attacked our "baby" and in the ensuing battle I managed to subdue it and it released Josie but then as Cindi attemped to corral our Josie, the pitbull lunged and bit down on Cindi's hand several times and then myself on the leg before I could regain control of it in what I can only describe as a death grip. I was in such a rage I was hellbent to kill it with my bare hands, it went limp and then the owner who had stood passively nearby until this point finally stepped up to take the dog away. Josie, having escaped jaws of the pitbull ran off. During the attack the children wanted to help get Josie away but we warned them to stay back and get to safety. As Josie ran off they formed a posse to track her down and they found her hiding in some bushes. She came when called by name. An injured dog will not do this unless it has absolute trust in the caller and I can only be grateful that we took the time to introduce Josie carefully to every local child we came into contact in the preceding months since we have had her. After verifying the extent of the injuries I called the police and EMT's. To repeat the episode here, causes tears to well up. Sorry, but I need a release. Cindi has some serious puncture wounds and some infection but should be okay in time we'll know more tomorrow after a visit with a specialist, fingers crossed. My wound was, luckily, not so severe but I strained my thumb choking the dog.

Now, days later and restless nights in between, I am coping with some measure of PTSD. Cindi is having her own issues but I think she is handling it better than me. Josie... Josie is a trooper.  Her wound is a horrible gash in her abdomen, but she has no organ damage and the vet says she is a model patient and is recovering very well. When we went to see her the day after she was pathetic and glassy eyed from the drugs to sedate her but she started to wag her tail the second she saw us, and through the tears we joked out loud that she won't being going fo any walks anytime soon... Josie perked up and with those irresistible eyes look at me with a "did you say Walk... lets go" look that again caused us to completely lose it again. Even now, I'm a mess recalling it.

In recent days, on other threads regarding dogs some flippant and insensitive comments were made which have since been deleted about dogs on leashes will not come to harm. I know the context was referring to something somewhat different but the attitude expressed was mean in my book.  Those individuals should re-evaluate whether they should have a dog if they already do. No dog is above biting unless it is it muzzled... am I for that? NO.  Should all dogs be leashed at all times when in public? I believe the answer is yes.  As much as you know your dog, you also do not know your dog.  You cannot know it's trigger points.  I cannot say what exactly caused the pitbull to attack us. We were not near it. Josie was not doing anything aggressive, just her usual sniffing the ground and watching the children.  I can only surmise from anecdotal evidence that the dog has been poorly trained and cared for even worse. I have witness that dog being screamed at and struck by other members of that household during a less agressive encounter. That is why I knew to choke up on Josie's leash. This time I did not have time to retreat in the other direction. 

Dog ownership is a huge responsiblity and if you aren't up to it, don't start. For those that are, I recommend carrying pepper spray or bear mace along with some other non-lethal means of self defence not only for yourselves but for the potential attackers. I certainly will be. I say this because I have looked inward at myself and seen an ugly monster that could kill in the most primal way if pushed that far. That beast needs soothing. I have been told it is a natural protective urge to defend your family in such a manner.  Cindi calls me her hero, had I not been there the story could have been much worse. I know she is right but that does not make the ugliness of that anger and rage seem much better. 

Please do not turn this into a freeforall self defense thread. Nor am I seeking sympathy.  I need to release gut wrenching anguish. I PMed a respected fellow Dreamer and she urged me to share this traumatic event with you. In the hopes that it will arm you with an understanding that self protection is necessary I offer up my testimony. Each will decide in their own way only that which is right for them but before deciding that, each of us needs to look deep inside at their ugliest fears and know thyself.  

Sometimes it's not pretty.... The aftermath of such an event never is. Consider that first before you act later. You may be able to avoid a catastrophe or worse.

Sorry for the long post.

With that, I open the floor to thoughtful considered opinion....

Brian



-- Edited by biggaRView on Thursday 18th of September 2014 07:46:05 AM

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Brian - so sorry for your incident, happy to hear healing is occurring but I truly believe this never should have happened to begin with.

I am one of those who think that all pets should be on leashes unless it's a designated off leash area and even there we have seen problems.

Many of you know we travel with a cat, who is leash trained, loves to go out doors but is not happy when an off leash dog invades her space while she's outside. Right now we're having an issue with an RV neighbor who dog is on a very long lead, long enough to come halfway under our RV. Despite asking nicely several times, they won't shorten the lead and Tazzy is now paranoid to walk down the steps to go on her walk. IMO, another pet should not have the ability to intimidate a pet who has owners who are following rules and being responsible.

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Unfortunately, these types of incidents happen. Not often and one may not think about them much - UNTIL it happens to you. I can say that because a similar incident happened to me. Fortunately I was able to keep the pitbull away from my dog with pepper spray and using other means. This is why I almost always carry pepperspray. Believe me - it works quite well if you have the right kind. I also suggest a striking weapon. I won't go into firearms because this is not a good reason for a firearm and the decision to carry one should be based on more than this scenario. And the responsibility is far, far greater.

I hope you heal fast. Your dog will likely do better than you will.....I do hope the authorities are involved in this.

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Wow Brian! What a scary experience! I understand, having been attacked several years ago and chased down by a dog! I didn't even have my dog with me.
So I agree it is good advice to carry pepper spray or something to be able to ward off such an aggressive animal.
It will go on my must pack list for the rv....or for that matter any camping trip!
Thank you for openly sharing your story with us and I'm so glad it wasn't a worse outcome for you, Cindi and Josie.

Bonnie

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We have had the 2 pit bulls come after us so we are as prepared as we can be. In our case, the dogs did not bite me and were just dog aggressive, luckily young inexperienced bitters. There is no time to think when you see a dog(s) charging you. I am starting to think that this is happening much more often than people believe. I, too, am so sorry that this happened. After the dogs came after mine, I was afraid to go outside and afraid to walk them so we upped our protection. Sadly, someone has moved in a couple of blocks away with two pit bulls they tie in the front yard that show aggression. I believe we may have dog fighting in the area. A block away is a St. Bernard that is aggressive with owners that don't have a clue and can't even restrain it on the leash. There were 22 dog bites here in May and that is the standard per the newspaper police reports and that is lot for a town with 25,000 people. I don't have the answer but all of these irresponsible people make it much harder for the majority who are responsible dog owners. I hope you and yours are able to heal both mentally and physically from this horrible mishap.

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I have been bitten several times by my own dogs (I had several chihuahuas) and bitten and scratched by a lot of cats but never had a strange dog attack me. I will get some pepper spray now that I've read your warnings. As to the "reaction of the beast" that you mentioned Brian, that is a primeval survival reaction that we all have within us. I'm a small woman, only 5'2", and yet I once chased a peeping tom down the street and I also chased a mugger that had grabbed my purse, and, got my purse back even though he was trying to cut me with a knife. When you or a loved one are in danger adrenalin surges and the rational brain lets your body do its job. It would have been much worse if you had not reacted. You are still the nice, humane and compassionate person you have always seemed to be. There's nothing ugly in you, you're just a human being.

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So sorry to hear about this, I could barely finish reading the details....Dogs are good, owners are irresponsible *************, these people who handle their pets like this should be locked up for animal abuse and be charged criminally for the damage they cause......The pets are helpless victims of stupid owners....Sorry Again....

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Jack Mayer wrote:

This is why I almost always carry pepperspray. Believe me - it works quite well if you have the right kind.


 Care to share what is the right kind. I would sure be interested to carry some at different times. I even got bit by my neighbors little wiener dog. Bit me in the leg, pierced holes through my jeans and to the bone. Hurt like hell for a long time after. Good thing wasn't wearing short pants.



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That story is so sad. Sorry to hear of your troubles. Glad everyone is on the mend. You are indeed fortunate as it could have been far worse. One must always consider personal protection of some type when out and about. I am always armed, (mainly for 2 legged animals) but this is not the right choice for many folk. Pepper spray is a better solution to this type of problem and is why I carry UDAP bear spray when in bear country (also a larger firearm, just in case.)

Perhaps a stun cane might be useful when walking a dog as a non lethal deterrent. www.youtube.com/watch It's a flashlight too.

Here's what DW and I always take with us when walking - mainly for stability but they could be used as a weapon if needed. Remember a stick in the hand is better than a shotgun locked up at home.

Chip



-- Edited by Sushidog on Wednesday 17th of September 2014 03:09:50 PM

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Thank you for sharing your experience. How terribly frightening! I hope you all heal very quickly, both physically and emotionally.

For someone like me, who has never been in that situation and is very new to this lifestyle, I appreciate all the words of warning. I'm only in my 2nd campground right now, but will certainly heed the warnings and purchase pepper spray right away. Where does one buy that?

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This brought a knot to my stomach while reading it. It must have been a terrifying ordeal.

Unfortunately I was on the other end of this type of attack. We had two Keeshonds which normally won't attack other dogs but are more of "Hey I want to go over and say hi to that other dog". They pull on the leash straining to get over to the dog. We always kept our dogs on leash.

One day while straining to get to a dog, the leash broke and our oldest dog headed straight for a champion Akita. The RV Park was near a location where a regional dog show was being held so it was full of show dogs. Luckily the show dogs owner was able to kick at my dog, and she returned to me.

Moral of this Story: be sure to examine your pet leashes every so often. Both leashes had a part which was weakened by rust during the several years we used them. The second one was just about ready to let loose.



-- Edited by The Bear II on Wednesday 17th of September 2014 04:14:09 PM

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Our hearts ache for you all! I was trying to think if I ever experienced anything as terrifying in my life and the answer is no. You're our hero, too, Brian as we believe you saved both Cindi and Josie. Your posts on here have always been thoughtful, encouraging and informative. Too read of your suffering is rending.

I feel furious & teared up just reading your story. I wouldn't consider myself a violent person but too bad you released that dog!

I'm going to find my pepper spray, I took it off my purse as we were going into government facilities and I'll clip it on Sadie's leash. We've met several RVers who also carry a golf club, primarily in coyote prone areas but you've reminded us all again to ALWAYS be prepared.

Hope you get sweet Josie home soon and praying for smooth healing.

Big hugs to you all,
Sherry & Jesse

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Brian: all I will say is; Sorry this happended as I don't want to start any contrversey!

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Thanks everyone for the kind thoughts and helpful advice on safety options to consider. Cindi and her family used walking sticks when out hiking  when she was younger. We'll add that to our RV safety equipment list. We also like the idea of regularly checking the leashes or harnesses for wear. In addition to pepper spray, the EMTs suggested to us the use of an airhorn to startle any animal that threatens, allowing you to escape. 

Dale & Ruth, seems like it might be time to escalate your particular situation to the camp host, ranger etc  since your attempt  at a neighborly resolution has apparently fallen on deaf ears.

Jack, ditto Trailerking's request on the "right" kind of pepper spray, apparently many of us need to know.

Bernie, Cindi knows exactly what you mean by "hurts like hell" she has 11 puncture wounds on her hand to prove it.

Sherry, the neighbors might wonder which hole Cindi the golfer was playing next. but she thinks it would be a good idea when we are out in the trails were coyotes roam. 

Again, thanks everyone for sharing. We'll keep you posted on our progress.

 

 

 



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I am so sorry this happened to you! How scary!

I realize a lot of these type stories are about pitbulls, but we have had it happen with other breeds, smaller dogs actually. Bill was walking Cocoa just last week and a chihuahua came running out of a Class A, nipping and biting at her. She is much bigger at about 48lbs (she is a black lab/Austrailian Cattle Dog mix), but is an old girl (almost 14 years old) and just wanted to get away. Bill had to pick her up to prevent her from being bitten. After a couple of minutes the owner came running out apologizing. Just today a small collie came running up while I walked her, the owner was right there and I said to him "She doesn't play well with others" while his dog circled around her. I tried to push it away with my foot and he came over angry saying "don't kick my dog". I said "I didn't kick your dog I was pushing it away, my dog is old and doesn't play well with others" He says that his dog is fine with other dogs and I didn't need to kick it. I DID NOT KICK the guys dog! I told him that MY dog, the one ON ITS LEASH doesn't play well with others and that he needs to control HIS dog. I just kept walking b/c he was an idiot and there was no reasoning with him. If I see it without a leash again I will report him to the CG owners. The dog seemed friendly enough, but my dog doesn't like unknown dogs invading her space. I was concerned my dog would snap at his dog b/c she is old and doesn't tolerate unknown dogs like she did in her younger years.

I do understand about the primal thing also, but as someone already said, you aren't bad, there is nothing wrong with you, you were just protecting your own.

Please consider getting yourself help for this if you continue to struggle.

Hope everyone continues to recover with no additional issues.

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Wow Brian how terrifying. Let me say good for you for having the courage to grab that dog and protect Cindi and Josie. Many people would have ran to safety and that took real guts. I totally agree being a pet owner is a responsibility especially with dealing with a breed that can cause serious damage to others. I am not singling out pit bulls here although personally I wouldn't own one both my husband and mother were attacked by a German shepherd in their childhoods and those events can cause long lasting scars. Again thank you for sharing your story...it goes beyond a cautionary tale and speaks to the heart of the seriousness of of dog ownership.

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Jack Mayer wrote:

Unfortunately, these types of incidents happen. Not often and one may not think about them much - UNTIL it happens to you. I can say that because a similar incident happened to me. Fortunately I was able to keep the pitbull away from my dog with pepper spray and using other means. This is why I almost always carry pepperspray. Believe me - it works quite well if you have the right kind. I also suggest a striking weapon. I won't go into firearms because this is not a good reason for a firearm and the decision to carry one should be based on more than this scenario. And the responsibility is far, far greater.

I hope you heal fast. Your dog will likely do better than you will.....I do hope the authorities are involved in this.


 Jack, as always, a considered and thoughtful response. I believe you are right that Josie will mend faster than me. I can see it in her face when we visit her at the vet. Last night was first night since the attack that I slept without interuption, so the sharing and the support are an immeasureable part of healing. 

And, yes, the authorities are involved, we are petitioning them to have the dog designated as a dangerous animal, in no small part because of our injuries but the for the children that use that park next door to the house that the dog lives at. The owner was cited for ordinance violations for the incident. In Illinois, there is a "one bite" law (or more correctly one incident) the offending animal is submitted into quarantine for examination, held for ten days, then re-examined if the owner is known or humanely dealt with if no owner can be determined. Upon release, no person under 18 may walk or otherwise supervise the dog and it must be muzzled at all times while in public. It must be leashed at all times even in fenced areas. If a designation of dangerous animal is conferred on the dog and my gut feeling says that they will, any further incidents will considered a Felony and the owner arrested. Under Illinois law, the owner of an attacking dog is fully responsible for any and all medical and related expenses of the victim irregardless of whether it was leashed or not if the victim was within their rights to be where they were and were acting in a peaceful manner. 

Kelly, Lee & Trace your support is also appreciated and is helping with the healing.



-- Edited by biggaRView on Thursday 18th of September 2014 07:49:09 AM

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Just a thought. If you are sueing.. You may not want to posting on here..

Sorry for your problems, and your injuries. And not trying to start a argument. But I hear , and have seen, and heard these senario's over and over again.

Your thread has motivated me to try a less lethal method of security. Mainly because I am not sure the wife would pull her pistol and use it, if the need arises, even though she is within her legal rights to do so.( not looking for a argument )I ordered a taser cane, and await someone to post what brand pepper spray works. I will try and get the wife to carry it with her. In some areas, I expect I will need to walk the dog.

I think most folks would go after the dog with your bare hands, given the senario. Not much of a choice, sounds like. You do what you have to do to survive. But that would be very dangerous for the wife,( for anyone ) who walks the dog 95% of the time. And I refuse to have a funeral because some owner can't control his dog.

Good luck and get well.



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Steve, you're right and I have been careful not make any claim that cannot be backed up sworn statements or that is in any way malicious toward the owner of the dog. There were plenty of witnesses and the LEOs that responded all concurred with our account and said I/we acted appropriately and with in the law.  Nonetheless, your warning is being heeded.

Brian



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Wow! "don't kick my dog" really? I WILL kick a dog if it comes at me in an aggressive manner. Unless I happen to have something else in my hands. Then if the owner complains, well, I may kick him also.
Seriously though I've been bitten before and had other dogs attack my previous dogs. Don't have a dog now but see dogs walking people all the time. Please learn to control your dogs. I often see people being pulled by their dogs, please take an obedience class and learn what heel means.

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TRAILERKING wrote:
Jack Mayer wrote:

This is why I almost always carry pepperspray. Believe me - it works quite well if you have the right kind.


 Care to share what is the right kind. I would sure be interested to carry some at different times. I even got bit by my neighbors little wiener dog. Bit me in the leg, pierced holes through my jeans and to the bone. Hurt like hell for a long time after. Good thing wasn't wearing short pants.


 Take a look at this website. I Like the fog type since it is dispensed in a more uniform pattern with better coverage. The stream type puts down a more effective barrier but you have to HIT the offender with it. Fog is a better chance at getting it on target.

In all cases if you have it in a purse or pocket and fumble to get it out then it is useless. Like any other defensive tool you have to PRACTICE deployment. When I have mine on me it is carried on my belt near my right hand, and can be deployed fast. BUT you have to practice getting it out and aiming it so it becomes muscle memory. Otherwise you are just fooling yourself that it will be helpful to you. You also have to position it in the case so that your finger can slide under the cover without turning the cannister around. Without practicing, most people never notice this "deployment flaw".

I realize that kicking is a natural instinct in response to a charging dog, but many dogs that are charging are just exhibiting territorial behaviour and will not actually attack. Kicking it will cause it to basically defend itself....so you have to use good judgement in doing that. A hard thing to do in a high adrenaline situation.

And for those of you that do carry firearms I do hope you also carry a less lethal defense mechanism. Use of force continuum will apply to you as a civilian. You have a grave responsibility if you choose to carry and deploy your weapon. MOST people that have a concealed carry permit do not train enough or consider alternatives enough.....(OK, sorry for the deviation.....).

On edit....One thing I forgot - make sure you carry a decontamination product with your pepper spray. If you deploy it it is possible that you will get some of it too....hopefully not, but possible. You won't get a major hit, but bystanders and yourself will be thankful for the decon products. They come in small packets that are easy to carry.



-- Edited by Jack Mayer on Thursday 18th of September 2014 10:48:09 AM

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Sensible advice, thanks Jack. I hope that I'll never need to deploy it, one attack is one too many... never again.



-- Edited by biggaRView on Thursday 18th of September 2014 11:10:02 AM

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At one time, I carried a heavy walking stick. I would hold the stick up and shout "No!" and I am loud and it worked with many dogs but the day a Siberian Husky came after Rinnie, I realized that trying to handle Rinnie and the stick and a dog determined to harm mine, the stick was of no use against so much activity. Shouting "No!" loudly and meaning it can go a long way in discouraging some dogs. If anyone has seen "The Dog Whisperer", what he calls "red zone" dogs cannot be reasoned with and they are out there. I had a protective dog years ago and I took the necessary precautions yet two people insisted on pushing it with her since dogs never bite them, well, they couldn't say that after their voluntary and stupid attempt to prove that with her. They just could not leave her alone and she did not like to be touched by strangers and, frankly, neither do I so I thought she should have the same option. She just nipped them but after that, they left her alone. So, you will encounter people that insist they should pet your dog or that their dogs want to be friends with theirs. I have also noticed that my dogs pick up my emotions and if I am not comfortable, neither are they.

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Brian, sorry to hear about your ordeal. Pam's and my prayers go out to you, Cindi and Josie for a continued and fast healing process. I realize this is/was a difficult subject to write about and wish to thank you for using it as a reminder and warning to all the dreamers as we walk on the trails and in the parks.

Jack thanks for your input and ideas on ways to avoid dogs on the trails.

Red.

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SnowGypsy wrote:

...you will encounter people that insist they should pet your dog or that their dogs want to be friends with theirs....


 One must never take it for granted that a new dog or a child or an adult for that matter will be act appropriately but rather, in a manner that triggers an unexpected response. We always shorten Josie's leash when approaching others and are cautious particularly with other dogs and are ready to pull back when introductions are made if they do not go well. It's fairly obvious but not always when a line has been crossed. Children wanting to pet Josie is fairly simple affair from experience (she is irresistibly cute) and our practice is to stop and kneal down close to Josie and softly reassure her it's okay before they kids get close enough. She will general crouch on all four corners with her head on the ground, a submissive posture. A wagging tail is a good sign in this position and signals a safe approach. Occasionally we have had to tell the kids to slow down.  Josie is extremely tolerant of awkward handling by children but we are always on guard against overly anxious kids eager to say hello. Always better to play it safe when you can. We are always wary of any dog no matter how small or even well known to us that is off leash when Josie is on hers in a given situation, because that dog will have an advantage if things go badly. However after the attack on Sunday, even dog parks where they are allowed to run free will make me nervous.



-- Edited by biggaRView on Friday 19th of September 2014 09:51:17 AM

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First off I’m sorry to hear about you’re encounter Brian. I have been bitten a couple times and I was attacked by a dog in my pre-teen years and it has always stayed with me just a little I think. I love dogs but I’m always cautious when bumping into them for the first time.
My hat is off to you for having the ability to let go with the death hold. Not sure I would have knowing the owner appeared to be so non-caring at the start.
I normally carry a knife and figured if a dog was close enough and aggressive enough that I had to use it I would. But after reading you’re story I re-evaluated and realized that my wife does NOT carry any protection and I very often wear a athletic type shorts on evening outings around the campground and usually have nothing in the pockets. And to be honest I probably not as quick as I used to be.
So long story short, thanks for sharing the event with us and making us re-think the way we do things. I for one will be making a purchase of some type of spray. I have friends that will not go anyplace without a sidearm but I choose not to.

We have been traveling with a Golden Retriever rescue and it certainly does not like to meet new dogs, especially small yappers. Great with people and kids but other dogs, not so much. What has made it worse is that people see a Golden coming and right off think it HAS to be the friendliest thing and let there dogs come close.
We always give warning that he does not greet well but as mentioned some just don't get it. I used to really stress out over it and alter my route to avoid any issues but I almost hate to say that if a small dog is off leash and runs at Jack I have started to feel that it is what it is.
Now I'm off to check out the site Jack provided.

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Brian: Maybe you could link up on the internet with some people that have been through what you have and see how they have come along in recovering from the mental/emotional scars. I just cannot imagine. It was bad enough for us to have what was minor compared to what you experienced. It took me probably a month before I took the dogs on a walk again and that was after getting the more powerful stun gun. That was almost 2 years ago and when we walk, I constantly scan in every direction and a tumbling leave gets my immediate attention. Any loose dog I see, I switch and go in the opposite direction as quick as I can. When we walk, there is myself, husband, son with DS and the senior dogs so we are sort of a large target. Your story has made me even more cautious which is a good thing because we were getting a little too comfortable and taking chances walking by houses where if the dog slipped out, it wouldn't be good. I am sure that you telling your story will help to assure that some others won't have to experience what you did. There is only so much we can do to prevent things like this and I refuse to become a prisoner in my own house. Dogs are such a big responsibility and these 2 will be my last, probably. Take care of you and yours and I am hoping for both a physical and mental/emotional recovery for the 3 of you.

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Brian,

Our heartfelt sympathy on this incident! We definitely know the feeling when unleashed dogs charge you. There was an incident in Michigan this summer where a man was out running and two Cane Corsos attacked him and killed him. The owners of the dogs are facing murder charges. Leashing a dog is SO very important. Having control of the other end of the leash is equally as important. Our Jenny, a 50 pound Golden Retriever, is a very happy dog and loves people. Simple physics dictates that a happy 50 pound dog jumping up on a small child, no matter the intent of the dog, can end with the child leaving their feet and hitting their head. Even a dog that doesn't leave all fours, but simply nuzzles into a small child can result in that child being knocked over. As much as we think we all know our dogs, we really can't tell what they are thinking when they encounter another dog or human. The best we can do is to control them with a leash. Unfortunately, that doesn't help in the situation such as yours. You had control of Josie.

Some form of deterrent is going to be considered in our household. Thank you for sharing this with us, and we hope that you are able to work through this incident. Our best to you on your physical and emotional recovery!

Jim (and Diana)



-- Edited by Diana and Jim on Friday 19th of September 2014 03:56:21 AM

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Brian,
Thank you for your willingness to share so openly about this awful experience. I have also had a dog rush and attack one of my dogs when I was walking them on a leash, but it was mild compared to your experience, and no severe injuries for my dog or myself. After reading your story, I too am researching how best to defend myself and my dogs in the event of an attack. We send you, Cindi and Josie our sincere wishes for speedy physical and emotional healing. We're glad to have you on the forum.
Jo (and Ben)

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Jo & Ben and Diana & Jim thanks for your kind words.

Cathy, I struggled mightily with this in the hours and days that followed. It's not the fight itself that bothers me, it's darker parts of the psyche that were touched. I know my reaction to defend my family was right and just, it's afterward that one deals with one's worst fears. The feelings are sobering and that is a grotesque understatement. In sharing, a huge mountain of stress is being released from my shoulders but it will take time and I am grateful for all the kind words and support from everybody. 

Brian

PS: Cindi's doctor is fairly sure that surgery will not be needed. smile  

PPS: Just received word that we can bring Josie home from the Veternary Hospital today... Doctor says she is recovering very well.smilesmile



-- Edited by biggaRView on Friday 19th of September 2014 10:24:28 AM

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Hoping that Cindi's doctor is right and that she won't need surgery. And, what time is the big welcome home party for Josie?

Well, we took a different route on our walk today and encountered a loose boxer. It ran at us from its yard while the owner called it. It is just reaching adulthood and I can see the attitude change. It parked itself, frozen in front of Rinnie and I fired the stun gun as a warning, and it was so focused on Rinnie I don't think it even noticed. The owner than announced "Don't do that, I don't put my hands on your dog so you don't put yours on mine." I told him "Then I suggest you keep your dog in your yard." He said "And, how would I do that?" I told him "I don't know, just get it done." Had he not became mouthy, I would not have called animal control. Animal control said that it did not sound aggressive but I recognized the stance as not good. She feels that the dog has probably not been socialized and I also know that isn't good. She did tell me that I need to call every time I see that the dog is out of the yard so that they have a record of it. I know that a lot of people don't want to complain but it will leave a paper trail that you may need later. Here, we have a lot of pitbulls and she says they are brought in, by a certain population that is out of control here, and the dogs are not treated humanely and are kept as protection resulting in the number of bites from the breed. They don't get shots, including rabies.

The owner of the boxer lives a half block away. They also have an RV. Now, the man has a British accent so maybe he isn't familiar with US laws. Truly SE Kansas is the area where we have had so many dog problems compared to other areas of KS and other states.

What might be useful for everyone is that last night, I googled for dog bites and came up with websites that discussed dog body language and had hints on ways to try to avoid dog bites.

Also, the animal control officer suggested pepper spray, she said not to get the mist which Jack suggested (I would tend to agree with Jack though) but get the other type. I told her the crew I had with me, I could not see being able to handle the pepper spray. I told her I would use or do whatever it took to protect a family member including my dogs and worry about consequences later. I did read quite a bit about the law and dogs which was interesting and it does vary by state.

What it all comes down to anymore with one's safety is that you have to do everything you can do to try to be safe and then you just have to live your life. I keep telling myself that because one is never safe not in S/B or in an RV parked anywhere and certainly not out in the public.








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If anyone is thinking of buying pepper spray for defense against animals, I recommend bear spray, not human pepper spray.

Here's a good article why: www.bearspray.com/

But let's break it down:
1. 30-35 ft range - the sooner you can engage the aggressive animal the more time the product has to take effect and deter the attack.
2. Fog nozzle - think of it like a shotgun instead of a rifle. You have a greater chance of hitting your small, rapidly moving target. The volume of spray is much greater with bear spray than human deterrent too. This is a major factor in stopping an aggressive animal.
3. Large capacity - I want a spray that I can fire for at least 4 seconds before running out. This is like having a gun with more ammo. There is less chance you will run out of "bullets" when you really need it.
4. Not too hot - Some human spray is actually too hot for sensitive canine and ursine noses. You can unnecessarily permanently damage an animal's delicate senses. 2% MC is the legal limit for bear spray strength - more than adequate to do its intended job without causing permanent injury like some human sprays (intended for our much less sensitive noses and eyes). Too hot of a spray (like police Phase IV human spray) will cause severe blisters inside the animal's sinuses and face and can cause the animal to sufficate and die.

BTW be sure and check the legality of carrying it in your state. Just be aware that bear spray may be unintentionally lethal, so exercise good judgement in it's use.

Chip

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Cindi and I continue to heal from the physical injuries with additional doctor followups this coming week. The timing of the attack, has really put a dent in several "thumb and hand" required chores around the house including rebuilding the pad for our rainbarrels that we use for watering our veggie garden. 

Josie is finally home, with the "cone of shame" to protect her stitches, though I prefer to call it her "badge of honor". The drug regimen she's on will last a few more days if all goes well so she's a bit dopey shortly after being dosed and is resting most of the time. But she is alert enough and I took her for a short walk today and she seems relieved to get back to normal routines though some of our more active ones will definitely have to wait. 

We found out that the pitbull may have been involved in other biting incidents so we are following up on that.

Cathy, the boxer owner's response sounds almost comical... If he said that to Blue Collar Comedy member Bill Engvall, the response to "And, how do I keep my dog in my yard?" would be something like... "I guess you could always move to a deserted island...., heeeeeeere's your sign"biggrinnono  That guy is not too bright.



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I had been debating getting pepper spray after reading the previous thread about dogs and then the other day while hiking, a dog, on its own, approaches us, growling and barking. A minute later the owner showed up, telling the dog to "hush" while trying to have a casual conversation with us. I was frozen in place because the dog kept slowly approaching while still growling. Finally I said, "hey, I'm not a dog person, could you call him off? " the owner replied very sarcastically that it was obvious I don't like dogs ( is that a crime?) The dog never stopped growling and barking and my husband came very close to pulling out the knife he always carries.

Had the dog decided to attack there would have been nothing the owner could have done at that point to stop it. He had no control over that dog.
I see pepper spray in my future.
Sue

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soos wrote:

I had been debating getting pepper spray after reading the previous thread about dogs and then the other day while hiking, a dog, on its own, approaches us, growling and barking. A minute later the owner showed up, telling the dog to "hush" while trying to have a casual conversation with us. I was frozen in place because the dog kept slowly approaching while still growling. Finally I said, "hey, I'm not a dog person, could you call him off? " the owner replied very sarcastically that it was obvious I don't like dogs ( is that a crime?) The dog never stopped growling and barking and my husband came very close to pulling out the knife he always carries.

Had the dog decided to attack there would have been nothing the owner could have done at that point to stop it. He had no control over that dog.
I see pepper spray in my future.
Sue


Yeah.............First should give the dog owner a shot of pepper spray and then the dog. 



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For me, the deal breaker is the attitude and the control the person has over their dog. If your dog rushes up to me and if you have a clue, you'll realize that I am not comfortable with the situation it is creating, call your dog or grab it by the collar and say you are sorry. At that point, we don't have a problem. I understand that your dog might get free from you but I don't understand your inability to control it. We often help someone track a loose dog and encourage it to go back to the owner. When I yell "No!" both dogs stop in their tracks although in the past if in the pursuit of a squirrel it takes them a few seconds to really hear me.

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Pit bulls were bred to hunt and attack. They are great for that. Why people insist in making pets out of them is beyond me. Don't get me wrong, I am a dog lover not a hater. Use a Pit Bull for what it is intended for.

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Glenn West wrote:

Pit bulls were bred to hunt and attack. They are great for that. Why people insist in making pets out of them is beyond me. Don't get me wrong, I am a dog lover not a hater. Use a Pit Bull for what it is intended for.


 All Dogs are originally bred for other purposes..Hunting, Droving, Gaurding, Rescue, Etc...Pit Bulls happen to be highly intelligent , Fearless, and very eager to please,,,,,They make great pets in the correct hands. You can easily relate PitBulls and Many other breeds to guns...The Breed is not the Problem...it's the people (idiots) who get them.



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Have seen too many Pit Bulls get aggressive to good owners who never mistreated them and they just couldn't believe their pet attacked them.

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Pit Bull discussions can escalate rather rapidly. I have seen the difference coming from a county where they were banned versus a county where the majority of dogs are pit bulls. Yes, the majority. Having different breeds of dogs "greet" us and our leashed dogs, I have seen the differences in attitude and approach. A person needs to be more intelligent than their dog which is often not the case. Our herding dogs, although never trained and discouraged, still herded whatever was available, usually the kids but one really needed it. The hunting dogs wanted to hunt. Dogs known to not be good with kids generally were not. There are characteristics of breeds that very hard to channel away from the original purpose. I had a list of the 10 most challenging breeds to own and every breed we had a problem with just happened to be on that list. We attended dog shows years ago and breeds known for not getting along with other dogs often tried to go after one another in the ring and these were show dogs.

Any dog can bite or injure another dog or person and the preparation is the same despite the breed. Some of the little dogs are just as mean and ill-tempered as some of the larger breeds.

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Pit bulls are not the only breed that has been known to attack people and other dogs. Some especially dangerous breeds known are the Dogo Argentino, Presa Canario, Cane Corso, Tosa Inu, Fila Brasileiro and Presa Mallorquin. Another breed that is less common, but certainly a dangerous mix is the wolf-dog hybrid that are often mistaken or mislabeled as a Husky or Malamute.  All of these are known to have attacked people for no KNOWN reason.   This is not to say other breeds will not attack, or bite.  Some of the smallest and most easy going breeds have been known to bite for no KNOWN reason.



-- Edited by rv-vagabond on Sunday 21st of September 2014 12:57:50 PM

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Using bear spray is a good alternative to pepper spray. The issue I have with it is that it is much harder to carry so people do not have it on them when needed.

If you look at what I recommended with the fog nozzle it is a pretty good distance that it will go....but not as far as bear spray.

Some people do recommend a stream, and if you are well trained it can be more effective. It will deliver more fluid to the appropriate parts of your target....but most people are not proficient in its use. I don't feel I would be even though I sometimes use a practice cannister (does not contain active agents). You have to practice a LOT to be good with the stream....that is the only reason I would not use that.

As to bear spray being more "gentle" on the animal.....that is not a concern to me. I want something that is effective, easy to carry, and something that will not inconvenience me. I can't carry bear spray around as an EDC item on my belt. It is also harder for most people to put into a pocket. If you DO decide to carry bear spray I'd remove it from its (typical) holster and place it in a jacket pocket on your dominant hand side. If it is in the holster and NOT on a belt you will fumble with it.

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As I opened with in my OP, I do not want to turn this into a condemnation of any breed that is known for agressive tendencies. NO dog is immune to biting. The majority of a dog's temperment comes from it's training, how it is handled, it's human "alpha" and how it is/was socialized when very young. Negative tendencies can be greatly mitigated with responsible ownership and thoughtful care and affection of the animal in question. In the end it all boils down to one common denominator... the responsible action of the owner. Negligent or irresponsible owners of dogs can have situations with very dire outcomes and very painful consequences.

Brian.

PS: Jack, I concur with your opinions and recommendations after some very thorough research.



-- Edited by biggaRView on Sunday 21st of September 2014 01:04:23 PM

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I just orderd the pepperspray.. fogging.. a 3oz and 4oz. with the inert 2 oz.. incase I hit the wife with it..lol

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Brain, I'll say no more. I have not posted my real feelings about Pit Bulls because of you.

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Glenn, I respect that you may have negative opinion on the breed, I'll only respond by saying that while breeding plays a role in their agressiveness, that breeding came from human intervention. Those traits were/are deemed desirable for particular reasons that I would question as to need but that would be another subject.  I'll wager that even "biting" breeds can be conditioned/trained/bred to inhibit the bite reflex. I have viewed documentary evidence to confirm this. Again, that is human involvement in selective breeding. Dog's, with what they call a soft pallet, such as labs, beagles some other hunting breeds have been selectively bred to be easier to train to not bite savagely and to return caught prey to the alpha "intact". It seems to me that the human part of the equation is what ends up with the unintended consequences, especially when the humans do not exercise the necessary good judgement and the required personal responsibility to be good stewards of their animals.

Yes, it was a pitbull that attacked us but I bear no ill will toward the breed, even though we are and will continue to be cautious around them... the irresponsible owner? That is a different story for another place and time. 

Brian



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Ok got my fogging super duper special pepper spray for me and the wife, my million volt "zap" cane, wifes 380 and my 45... Damn Chihuahua's don't stand a chance..lol

We won't use this stuff where we are now.. Private. But ready for the stupidity of RV parks..
just see someone walking a large dog on walking path, by the river, with no leash.. How much you want to bet this stuff won't be used on dogs?

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I think I'll be well defended by my half-Manx attack cat, Junkman. My .22 long barrel Magnum will be used only as back-up against dummoxes who try to attack or steal her...

Kidding aside a big angry dog can create a very serious situation. Heck, even chihuahuas, if they attack in a pack can be dangerous. I used to raise them and they're fast and aggressive when provoked.

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manycats wrote:

I think I'll be well defended by my half-Manx attack cat, Junkman. My .22 long barrel Magnum will be used only as back-up against dummoxes who try to attack or steal her...

Kidding aside a big angry dog can create a very serious situation. Heck, even chihuahuas, if they attack in a pack can be dangerous. I used to raise them and they're fast and aggressive when provoked.


 I don't think I'd be worried about a pack of chihauahuas.. Pepper spray them maybe.. but doubtful...lol

I'm more afraid of big dogs, bears, coyotes, or any hungry large wild animals, and stupid , crazy people.

 

A little off track.. but..Yesterday..  Across the way from me, there is a guy living in a van, fulltimer , boondocking..lol.. he is feuding with the neighbors around here cause they stopped him from build a spot for a rv on his property.. As we where walking the dog yesterday, just as we walked by, behind his van, you heard a loud ****ing of a rifle.. We thought this guy is nuts.. I had my hand on my gun waiting to see him come out from around the van.. He didn't..

Just goes to show you how stupid and crazy people are.Some times they are pushed to the point where nothing matters anymore. Maybe this guy is one of them..

We could have been killed .. or if he was just trying to scare us away.. He could have been killed. He had the drop on us. We had no idea about this guy..I have a video cam set up out front now, looping. And will be very ready next I walk by..And I have to , as we are on a dead end..

We live in a wicked world.. with wicked people at every turn.. Watch your backs people !



-- Edited by The Junkman on Saturday 27th of September 2014 07:48:08 AM

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It almost scares me thinking people are walking around campgrounds packin guns. I get the pepper spray for animals but if I ever pull into a campground that I feel I should carry a gun I'm pulling out and moving on. Maybe even if the campground is next to an area that makes me feel unsafe I'll just drive away.
Lets go for a walk honey,, you grab the dog and I'll grab the gun. Unless I'm in the woods that just doesn't seem right to me. To many places I can be and not look over my shoulder in a campground. Just my opinion.

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