A safe way to protect myself from dogs while cycling?
I live on a rural road and I have some great piney woods that I bike through. Unfortunately there are several homes on my routes that have unpinned dogs. I've already been bitten once while riding. Anyone ever dealt with this and have a solution that keeps them off their legs while riding? I've considered pepper spray but I don't want to harm the dogs...I just don't want bite marks on my calves. These routes are outside of city limits so as far as I know there are no dog enclosure laws.
The last thing you want is to remind the dog that you hurt it with pepper spray, or soaked it with water. Giving it treats as you ride by will bring positive attitude between you and the dog and he will like you and no longer harm you cause you his buddy...lol
I keep a water bottle handy. A squirt of water to the face usually startles them enough to get away. The other solution is to speed it up. I have not found a dog yet that can sustain 40kph for more that a few seconds.
Also, a telescoping frame pump. just whip that sucker out and it's, "GAME OVER!"
H2O bottle works good but some dogs just keep comming, that's what I used to use.
most dogs are just bored and want to play, and the way dogs play is by chasing and biting each other... usually a waved arm and a loud "no" will at least pause 'em long enough to sneak past.
the scary ones are the pit bull-types, who are at least as fast as you and they are not playing. if one comes after me, I get in the drops for stability, speed up, and when he comes close I unclip and give him a swift kick in the jaw. usually that buys time to get away. remember - go fast, keep moving.
I gave up on pepper spray, pumps etc because it's so chaotic sometimes, you don't have time to go diggin and grabbin.
now, if you have some gravel roads, you could stop ahead of time and pick up some rocks to be prepared with.
or, you could buy them treats, and reward them for chasing you. up to you.
Seriously, if the dogs are harming you, you should take action.
Legal can be one, but that's a lot of paperwork. On the other hand, I like the quicker alternative.
The nose of a dog is a very sensitive spot. If you can hit the nose with a pump or some water, you'll be safe. Jusk keep the hand away from the dog's mouth.
If you can't stand hurting those obnoxious and aggressive dogs, here's a hint:
USE THE FRAME AS A SHIELD.
It might not work that well if there are two dogs, or if the dog get a steady hold on the bike, like the tire.
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