Well Becca just had a run in with another aggressive dog in the neighborhood. A friend has a golden retriever who has anxiety issues. It is a neighborhood joke that he is brain damaged from a house fire when he was a puppy.
Anyway Becca and I were next door to his house talking to his owner, a friend of mine. He got out the door past one of the kids and ran down the street. (When he gets loose he runs full out) Then he doubled back, ran up to Becca and bit her. I kicked him off and felt bad, but what else do you do? He took off on another tear so I grabbed Becca and ran into another friends house. She came running and helped me check Becca over. Slobber, but it didn't break the skin.
His owner came and apologized. It's the first time he has gone after another dog. It scared both Becca and I, but I understand that he isn't entirely stable.
I guess I need advice in how to deal with these encounters when they happen. How do I best protect Becca while not getting bitten myself?
It's hard to say, because when another dog attacks us, I fly into a panic and all I think to do it yell, which doesn't help. WE've been attacked four times, so I finally ordered a stun baton. It's like a stungun but it's 11 inches long so I don't have to get my hand TOO close to an attacking dog. I have not had to use it yet, and hope I never will. They say the noise it makes alone is enough to scare off most attacking dogs. At the very least it has given me peace of mind and confidence.
I am curious about this stun baton. Is it legal to carry? Where did you get it?
In the past month or two the amount of stray animals in our area has at least doubled. I have had to run off two dogs (I think they were just curious and wanted to say hi but I don't care) that approached Clutch and I on a walk. Also, last week I watched a guy leave his fenced in yard with his off leash shepherd to play fetch in the part of his yard that was not fenced just as I approached the block with Clutch.
stunguns, as in a weapon that's not a projectile, like a people-cattleprod, are legal in most states.
According to BestStunGun.com they're illegal in the following;
Ha! I'm in Chicago. Wouldn't you know.
I pick up the corgi and head in the opposite direction. Of course I am also dragging a doberman that is determined to meet the challenge! So far I have been quick enough to avoid any real danger. I just don't go near unleashed dogs even if they seem friendly.
Becca does not like being restrained. I don't think I would be able to pick her up and carry her. The dog that attacked her a few weeks ago wears a bell on her collar. Becca hears it way before I even see the dog. Her body language changes and she will turn and ask to go in the opposite direction. I usually figure out what the safest route is to continue our walk.
I also am a little leery of picking her up due to another incident. See my response to Melissa.
I agree with Bev in that I don't go near off leash dogs. If I see a dog get loose or running I will pick Franklin up or walk the other way or do what I can to avoid contact. I have tried picking him up when he was being mauled by two great dane mixes one time and it just resulted in me getting jumped all over by the dogs trying to get to the poor corgi dangling above my head. I carry pepper spray (the stun baton thing is an interesting idea!) attached to Franklin's leash. I know that I can inadvertently spray Franklin if I ever use it, but quite honestly I'd rather have something I know will stop a grizzly bear in its tracks. I don't want to mess around with vinegar or the other "safer" options because you basically have one chance to see if it works. If a dog is attacking Franklin I want to know I can stop it with pepper spray in the face, Franklin will be going to the vet immediately after anyway so we will deal with any accidental spray he gets at the vet, at least he will be alive. Working at a vet has damaged me a bit because we see daily the damage an attacking dog can cause. I can even begin to tell you the horror I have seen from loose dogs attacking, I'm not taking any chances.
I rescued my last dog, Kramer, from a pit bull attack. He lived on the grounds of the same school I taught at on the Navajo Reservation. He wasn't my dog at this point but after the pit bull was beat off of him the first time, I picked Kramer up. The pit then got away from the owner and came after me. His focus changed. He jumped up past Kramer, snapped at my face and grabbed my arm. It tore the sleeve off my shirt and raked and bruised my arm. I dropped Kramer, focus went back to him. It scared me witless. Eventually we were able to rescue Kramer and took him to the vet, then I kept him. It changed me more than him.
I don't think Becca would let me pick her up either.
yeah thats why I tend to not like the idea of picking up an attacking dog. The only time I pick Franklin up is to avoid having the dog see him in the first place, if the dog has alreaady set his sites on Franklin me picking him up will just 1) put me in greater danger and 2) make it harder for me to get the other dog off of him.
I think, in all honesty, very few people have seen a dog who is actually out for blood/to kill. I have seen this a few times and I actually sort of doubt if even pepper spray would work. We had 3 pitbull mix sisters at my school last year that were great buddies. One day one of them turned on her sister with no warning and the fight was on. The other sister thought this was an awesome game so we had a 2 on one fight with 3 65 pound pitbull mixes. Nothing would stop the original attacker and she was hellbent on killing her sister. We were able to get the other dog off and squeeze the sister through a gap in the fence.while one person wrapped a leash around the hind end of the other sister and drug her off. I've also seen 3 people with hoses and finally a 2x4 try to get an attacking pitbull off of a small poodle. The pitbull jumped out of a car window to attack the small dog and until the 2x4 was brought to essentially beat the dog senseless 3 grown men couldn't get him off of the poor poodle. That's why I opt for pepper spray, mostly for a major stun before the dog ever actually bites down on Franklin.
Here's a link on how to break up a fight if it actually does occur:
one of the main things is keep your cool, as hard as it is. If you just keep reading and re-reading this info so it is hammered deep in your head, if the time comes that you need to use it it will come right to you. This is what happened with the fight at school. One person got bit on the hand and ankle bc she didn't know what to do an reached into the mix. Pulling the attacker off by the hind legs was all that worked.
Sorry to hear about your incident! I hope Becca is emotionally alright as well. It may be a good idea to set Becca up for a play date with a friendly dog that you both know to help give her some extra positive interaction with another dog.
Hopefully you get some good responses on what to do during an attack. I would be interested in hearing some advice as well.
Thanks. We have a play date with two havenese tomorrow. Hopefully she doesn't try to herd them. Today we went over to the same friends house. She didn't have any problems being in the yard. I called ahead, and the dog was shut into a bedroom just in case.
Becca starts an agility class Monday. That should give us some positive interaction as well.
My corgi is dog aggressive and she has charged other dogs after slipping out of collars and various harnesses. The owner's responses are the biggest predictor of whether the situation is just awkward or terrible. By far the best response was when a man laughed. Even though Rubi charged, both dogs backed away. By far the worst behavior from the dogs comes when people pull on the leashes, hit or yell. At first I was just in awe of the people who were so casual and forgiving, because I was MORTIFIED but they were also getting almost magical responses from both their dog and mine with their "oh well - no blood not foul attitudes" so I chose to emulate them. And I have to because since my dog is scared of other dogs she also gets attacked often, which is the downside of pack mentallity.
I have had to consult several trainers over the years and they tell me this...relax the leash and drop the leash if the dog gets close. It feels all wrong at first, but it works. I haven't had to drop the leash yet but I absolutely relax the leash and keep my body language confident and relaxed and it works. Mind you I have been working on this for years so I am not judging any other response. It's scary - I know. Just remember that your reaction communicates a lot to your dog.
Note: I asked a policeman and he said that people inadvertantly spray themselves w the pepper sprays all the time so I put mine away.