Dogs – is it me or are there more aggressive / poorly controlled ones

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  • Dogs – is it me or are there more aggressive / poorly controlled ones
  • Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    Rubbish, it’s a massive step from snarling to biting. A snarl/growl is a warning, if the warning doesn’t work then depending on the dog it will either run or fight.

    and TBH there’s the problem in a nut shell.

    The person best able to make that assessment is the owner, and not some random member of the public who doesn’t have a clue what the dog will do, and it winds me up no end when irresponsible dog owners abdicate that responsibility to others because they can’t be arsed to train their dogs well enough.

    bigyinn
    Member

    I do enjoy a good dog thread on here.
    You get the sane normal people who dont like being run at / chased / bitten and the evangelical dog owners who somehow try and put the blame on you for not recognising their specific niche breed and its character traits.
    Im pretty meh about dogs really. But each to their own.

    I blame the owners. Every time.

    Premier Icon pnik
    Subscriber

    Absolutely how am i to determine the normal behaviour of a dog on frst encounter. Based on my recent experience i now assume fight/bite, previously i assumed flight. Twice bitten 3rd time shy.

    Dont worry they’re just noisy i was told seconds before removing my leg from the dog’s mouth.

    richc
    Member

    The person best able to make that assessment is the owner, and not some random member of the public who doesn’t have a clue what the dog will do, and it winds me up no end when irresponsible dog owners abdicate that responsibility to others because they can’t be arsed to train their dogs well enough.

    Responsibility is normally always with the owner, there are exceptions for when people are aggressive to the dog first IMHO; if you kick a dog just because and it bites you then you get what you deserve.

    However, I don’t consider a dog running towards someone threatening, I don’t consider dogs barking at each other threatening, I do consider a dog snarling at *anyone* unacceptable, I do consider a dog biting someone a huge deal even though it happens.

    One of mine has bitten someone who entered my house without permission after checking if the door was locked and let themselves in on a quiet Sunday morning (house has a footpath running past it), but they have never been aggressive to anyone off my property, even when provoked (ie: cyclists being rude/aggressive to 7 month pregnant GF to get off the footpath, as they were racing on it, not sure if they shouted Strava first though)

    BikePawl
    Member

    richc, would you consider a dog chasing after and running along side of a cyclist on a canal tow path covered with frozen puddles threatening?

    Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    However, I don’t consider a dog running towards someone threatening

    Others do though, as has been pointed out, people shouldn’t have to try and work out what the dog is going to do. Pretty much every eventuality is resolved by keeping a dog on a lead IMO. I know other’s disagree, and I can understand that dog owners love to see their dogs running free and having a great time, and TBH “most” dogs and owners are great. It’s just trying to guess which ones are going to cause problems that’s the issue!

    richc
    Member

    richc, would you consider a dog chasing after and running along side of a cyclist on a canal tow path covered with frozen puddles threatening?

    No, why would a dog running along a shared path be threatening? I think I would worry about that as much as I would worry about an oncoming cyclist tbh.

    I’m fairly certain mine have done this at some point, as they were trying to get somewhere as the cyclist was too slow, so briefly they would have shared the path until either they overtook the cyclist, they got to their destination or the cyclist overtook them.

    Others do though, as has been pointed out

    Most people don’t base their decisions on others prejudices though; personally I know my dogs, so I would be more worried about what you are going to do than them.

    To put a different spin on this, using your logic a lot of people don’t think cyclist should be on the road, would than mean that you wouldn’t ride on them?

    BikePawl
    Member

    It would be threatening because one wrong move from the dog could put the rider on the ground or in the canal. The key point is it was very icy, riding in a straight line was possible but any braking or turning would be dangerous. The owner was behind and had tried once to call the dog back but with no success.

    richc
    Member

    It would be threatening because one wrong move from the dog could put the rider on the ground or in the canal

    And did it? As that sounds more like you were worried (understandably) rather than threatened by the dog.

    Also out of interest why do you have more rights to use this path than the dog walker? A dog running along is not threatening.

    The Pilot
    Member

    However, I don’t consider a dog running towards someone threatening,

    And I don’t consider someone asking me to tell them the time threatening but I’m also aware that this sometimes means (as I believe in did when I was on my own in a quiet street in Brighton one evening), I’m an addict who is desperate for money and I’m wondering if this request might mean I can snatch your mobile phone out of your hand and sell it for my next fix (no judgement, addiction can happen to the best of us).
    What I’m trying to say is context is everything.
    A dog ran up to me the other day at Afan. I try not to interact with them when I’m on my bike as I don’t want to encourage them to think of people on bikes as things they can interact with. But this one was unstoppable, and I was taking a breather anyway, and he/she was so lovely and excitable I gave him/her some attention.
    But that dog’s approach was entirely different to the f”%^er with the useless owner who approached me a few weeks earlier exhibiting highly aggressive behaviour. In hindsight, I imagine it was a way off from actually biting me but I really don’t see why I should put up with this (this was also at Afan so I wasn’t anywhere I shouldn’t be or even vaguely non/bikey).
    What I’m saying is I think you can trust most people on here (many of us who are dog people) to know the difference between aggression (totally unacceptable in my view) and playfulness which, unless you’re stopped, like I was (which means it’s great), is a nuisance and unsettling (you don’t quite know what they are going to do) but something which you can put up with.

    To add to the animals and bikes debate, I once scared a horse who was being lunged in a paddock. I could see he was getting a bit nervy but I really didn’t think it could be anything to do with me as I was quite a way off. When it became clear it was indeed me who was causing the horse to become nervous, I slowed to super slow (I wasn’t going fast anyway) and asked the owner if it was me the horse was scared of and if so I was sorry. I didn’t get a reply so I asked her if she had thought about whether she had considered if it was actually her actions that had caused the horse to become nervous. When a horse gets scared, its reaction is to run. It was her that had deprived the horse of its natural reaction to fear and perhaps that was the real problem. Didn’t get a reply to that neither but then I wasn’t really expecting to.

    lalazar
    Member

    I was recently watching a football match seven a side type when a dog just peed through the wired fencing all over the players gear that included their drinking bottles. I challenged the owner who just seemed bemused and mumbled an apology but made no effort to stop his dog in the act. Didn’t end nicely.

    scrumfled
    Member

    i dont know if its any more frequent, but the rise of the dog walkers ‘controlling’ 6+ dogs certainly seems to add to it. i like dogs, but had some silly bint in stanmer screaming at me because one of her dogs went for me and I promptly hoofed the little sod.

    [Quote]you people need to stop smearing goose fat on your ankles.[/quote]

    Indeed. I ride bikes, walk my dog in places with lots of dogs and have never been attacked. Maybe I’m just lucky. My son is 5 he comes with me a lot he’s never been attacked or knocked over either. Had a few run ins with dogs attacking mine but nothing serious.

    Dog ownership has became a fashion epidemic in the UK, which has brought with it all the anti-social nobs that cause trouble where ever they go.

    Apparently dog owners are doing us all favour taking their dogs for a shit on our streets, not where they live of course! hanging bags from trees in spite and keeping their aggressive dogs under control and claiming all public space for their exclusive use. Same old same old problems you get with inconsiderate selfish people who think they own everything to the exclusion of anyone else not like them.

    Premier Icon mattbee
    Subscriber

    But why is no-one thinking of the poor children?!!!!

    BikePawl
    Member

    richc here’s a dictionary definition for you to think about.
    Threatened: to cause someone to feel insecure or anxious
    On your other point I have the same rights to use the path as the dog walker as long as I behave responsibly.
    A dog chasing and then running in close quarter to me on an extremely icy path is threatening, see the definition above.
    Was the dog walker behaving responsibly?

    Premier Icon aracer
    Member

    richc wrote:

    Depends on your definition of attacked and injured, I know TJ used to consider a dog off the lead within a 100 meters of him an emotional attack that would injure his psyche requiring thousands of hours of counseling to get over; whereas my opinion on that form of attack was he was mentally ill.

    I reckon all that means is that you didn’t read what he wrote (or like in many other places on this thread you’re exaggerating for effect) and that it says more about you than it does about him.

    richc wrote:

    personally I know my dogs

    Fine – but nobody else does, and knows that they’re not going to be the aggressive ones.

    To put a different spin on this, using your logic a lot of people don’t think cyclist should be on the road, would than mean that you wouldn’t ride on them?

    Wonderful analogy. How many of those people who think cyclists shouldn’t be on the road have been injured by one?

    richc wrote:

    It would be threatening because one wrong move from the dog could put the rider on the ground or in the canal

    And did it? As that sounds more like you were worried (understandably) rather than threatened by the dog.
    Also out of interest why do you have more rights to use this path than the dog walker? A dog running along is not threatening.
    [/quote]

    Ah, so that particular dog didn’t – does that make it an irrational fear despite the fact that there’s a reasonable chance of it happening?

    He has more rights simply because a dog is required to be under control in a public place, and yes dogs running towards you very much are threatening given (as you yourself have pointed out) you get very little warning before they bite. Every time I’ve been bitten has been a dog just running along a path I was riding or running along just before – not only does it take but an instant to go from a dog not under control to a dog dangerously out of control, but there doesn’t appear to be any way of knowing in advance.

    Premier Icon cookeaa
    Subscriber

    I love these threads.

    not really a dog fan myself, or perhaps it’s more some of the owners I have encountered over the years…

    Is a dog running towards you threatening? Well that’s a bit of an open ended question and I’m not sure yet.
    I will tell you once it gets to me and either has a curious sniff about or or clamps it’s jaws round a limb…

    The fact is that if I see a dog bounding about off the lead I’ll judge that it’s not under control, until I see it responding to it’s owner’s commands, how often do they actually follow commands? Pretty seldom IME…

    Basically I assume the worst about all dogs/owners until they demonstrate otherwise, sadly they tend to prove out my assumptions for the most part…

    An animal under control shouldn’t make strangers nervous or force them to alter their course/speed whether on foot, bicycle or horseback…
    Frankly I don’t give a crap what it takes for the owner to achieve that, they bought the bastard thing and have a duty to control it in public…

    leth
    Member

    I always hold the owners completely responsible for the behaviour of their animals. Just because you like dogs doesn’t mean I have to. A dog running at me always raises my guard as I don’t know it or the owner.
    Unfortunately dog owners don’t see things this way. Most dogs however are generally curious & playful. Doesn’t mean I like it. The unfortunate thing for responsible owners is that there is a rise in so called status dogs, which puts people’s guard up even more as the distrust of the dog gets bigger.

    rob8624
    Member

    “I used to have a dog who would chase anyone on a bike

    In the end I had to take the bike off him.”

    That made me laugh Welshfarmer. 😀

    I used to be scared of dogs after being chased by one on a bike when I was younger. I then manned up. The worse that most uncontrolled dogs (some farms dogs for example) can do is chase and nip, which is usually resolved with a quick kick. Bigger breads, can obviously do more damage, but the chances of them doing serious damage are very low I imagine.

    An animal under control shouldn’t make strangers nervous or force them to alter their course/speed whether on foot, bicycle or horseback…

    A considerate biker on a bridleway would slow down for a dog. You sound like a real passive agressive charmer

    has more rights simply because a dog is required to be under control in a public place,

    I’m pretty sure dogs have to be under control in certain places like roads around livestock etc, but it can be out of control in public as long as it is not dangerously so. Its can be dangerous when people have reasonable cause to feel threatened. So a dog running at you not barking or growling or whatever might not be reasonable I dont know. Poor manners on the part of the owner though with younger dogs it may well happen. I always think smaller dogs are most often the poorest trained as people with bigger dogs are more aware of it being intimidating.

    Premier Icon muddydwarf
    Subscriber

    Once passed a chap walking two dogs on the local canal towpath. I shouted ahead, he gathered the dogs and I thanked him and passed slowly and with a wide berth – all well and good. However, once I was past and speeding up he released the dogs. One, a young chocolate lab ran after me. I realised it only wanted to run, and was looking at me with a big grin on its face. By this time I was a couple of hundred yards from the owner and realised he may lose his dog, so I stopped. Dog jumped up for a cuddle (didn’t bother me as I was filthy anyway). Owner came running up red faced and angry looking, yelling “Noooooo!”

    Turns out he’d spent weeks teaching the dog not to leap up at people – oops!

    Premier Icon tomd
    Subscriber

    I think dog ownership had become more fashionable, so there do seem to be more folk out and about with dogs who aren’t really dog people and probably resent having to crap the thing once the novelty has worn off.

    What is threatening? A boisterous dog trying jump into my daughters pram will be treated like a slavering hell hound and swiftly booted. If I was on my own I’d probably pat it. Point is, the owner isn’t really the best person to judge what’s threatening.

    A dog jumping up at a pram would be reasonably judged to having the potential to cause harm so a boot in the chops would be a reasonable response.

    bigyinn
    Member

    To understand the mindset of someone who doesn’t like dogs or is uncomfortable around them would be a cyclist on the road. Do they assume that all other motorists are going to give them the space and priority they should get, or do they assume that all motorists are likely to do something completely random at some point putting the cyclist in danger?
    You cant look at a Ford Focus or a Daimler Sovereign and predict how they are going to be driven, why would a dog be any different?

    Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    anagallis_arvensis said Its can be dangerous when people have reasonable cause to feel threatened.

    no, you’re wrong.

    Your dog is considered dangerously out of control if it:

    injures someone
    makes someone worried that it might injure them.

    From the http://www.gov.uk site

    It doesn’t have to be “reasonable” for the reasons posters keep pointing out. The people best positioned to judge how their dog will react are the owners, not people who’ve never encountered the dog before.

    Premier Icon fionap
    Subscriber

    I tend to think that people who have a blanket hatred of dogs aren’t worth knowing.

    What is really sad, and something I have never experienced elsewhere, is the number of parents up here in London who are visibly terrified of dogs and are training their kids to be the same. I can be walking along the pavement with the dog (a soppy-looking spaniel, not exactly a ferocious beast) on a lead, walking nicely to heel, and there are parents who will gasp and virtually throw themselves in front of their children to shield them. Children who will scream, throw their arms around and dart out into the road when they see a dog coming, and the parents do nothing to reassure them.

    Children need lessons in how to deal with dogs – ideally from their parents, but if not, maybe at school (and I know of a rural school where they get a local farmer to take the occasional litter of puppies in to meet the young children). If there’s a young dog in the park, screaming and waving your arms around when it comes within 50m is going to make the dog think it’s a game and that children are fun. Simply ignoring the dog means most of the time it will ignore you back. A lot of these bad interactions that set the tone for a child’s impression of dogs for life could be avoided with training on both sides.

    Premier Icon cookeaa
    Subscriber

    A considerate biker on a bridleway would slow down for a dog.

    Agreed, a polite, sociable person enjoying being outside probably would slow and make space just because it is good manners, but that doesn’t change what I wrote, other ROW users shouldn’t be intimidated or forced to take unexpected action because of your inability to control your animal… Either train it or get rid of it.

    You sound like a real passive agressive charmer

    Me to a tee, have we met? 😉

    oldbloke
    Member

    I tend to think that people who have a blanket hatred of dogs aren’t worth knowing.

    That’s great stereotyping, in the same class as “all dog owners are irresponsible”.

    So, say I was attacked and bitten as a 6 year old by an Alsatian. And say I’ve since been bitten by a Jack Russell whilst minding my own business in a public car park, had my heels nipped by a Collie whilst on my bike and seen my son flattened and bitten by an out of control dog. Do you think I might have a reason to dislike dogs in general?

    Premier Icon fionap
    Subscriber

    That’s great stereotyping, in the same class as “all dog owners are irresponsible”.
    So, say I was attacked and bitten as a 6 year old by an Alsatian. And say I’ve since been bitten by a Jack Russell whilst minding my own business in a public car park, had my heels nipped by a Collie whilst on my bike and seen my son flattened and bitten by an out of control dog. Do you think I might have a reason to dislike dogs in general?

    No. You have a reason to dislike those four dogs. I hope you’ve given your son a chance to meet some nice, under-control dogs and appreciate they’re not going to hurt him so that he doesn’t go through life scared of dogs.

    Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    I tend to think that people who have a blanket hatred of dogs aren’t worth knowing.

    met any? And what did you say? 😆

    For the record, I don’t hate dogs, I’m not scared of them, grew up with dogs all my life. I’m not one for “hating” I’ll treat every case as I come across it. As I’ve said on this thread, it’s just the irresponsible owners that get on my nerves, most are perfectly cool.

    oldbloke
    Member

    No. You have a reason to dislike those four dogs. I hope you’ve given your son a chance to meet some nice, under-control dogs and appreciate they’re not going to hurt him so that he doesn’t go through life scared of dogs.

    As we’re all formed by our experiences, my view of dogs is overwhelmingly negative. I have no intention of seeking out “nice” dogs because I neither want them nor need them in my life.

    Rather than project that onto my son, my efforts to try and persuade him that it was a one off have been undone by so many dogs we’ve met since then not being controlled by their owners. The apologies from the owners need to be replaced by proper control in the first place. I can’t influence that.

    injures someone
    makes someone worried that it might injure them.

    From the http://www.gov.uk site

    That link isnt helpful and I doubt the law says what you say. Although our interpretations sound very similar tbf

    other ROW users shouldn’t be intimidated or forced to take unexpected action because of your inability to control your animal… Either train it or get rid of it.

    My dog is well behaved thanks. To be honest when I said passive aggressive what I meant was you come across as a complete nutter trying to be an internet hardman.

    scrumfled
    Member

    oldbloke wrote:

    The apologies from the owners need to be replaced by proper control in the first place. I can’t influence that.

    Some people feel the same about kids 😉

    Hounds are like kids, some are nice, some are little shits, some are scared, some outgoing etc. You dont have to like them, but its usually best to assume they’re unpredictable since they’re like 4 year olds…If you slow down for dogs and give the owners a chance to exert control, the outcome is usually better.

    The dogs who ‘dont like bicycles’ and get aggressive need to be kept on a bloody lead and get trained. Sadly its the bad owners/dogs that you remember.

    oldbloke
    Member

    Some people feel the same about kids

    Absolutely! If only leads were allowed for them after the toddler stage, life would be so much easier.

    Premier Icon aracer
    Member

    fionap wrote:

    I tend to think that people who have a blanket hatred of dogs aren’t worth knowing.

    For the record I don’t hate dogs – and TBH I reckon that’s actually part of the problem. The times I’ve been bitten I’ve just ignored the dogs involved and expected them to be friendly.

    wrote:

    injures someone
    makes someone worried that it might injure them.
    From the http://www.gov.uk site

    That link isnt helpful and I doubt the law says what you say. Although our interpretations sound very similar tbf
    [/quote]

    Well do your own research!

    It took me all of 30s to find a page on that website which has exactly the wording nickc quoted. What do you reckon the chances are it http://www.gov.uk is incorrect about the law?

    Premier Icon mintimperial
    Subscriber

    Victorian cyclists had an effective method of dealing with nuisance dogs:

    Have to say I’ve not had much bother with them recently. Farm dogs used to be really scary when I was growing up, but presumably enough ramblers got savaged that farmers have stopped letting rabid dobermans run loose round their farmyards. Fat labs and yippy rat-type things barely register, just ride on past. Some dog owners are selfish, entitled dicks, but that’s just the way of the world.

    Premier Icon Rio
    Subscriber

    injures someone
    makes someone worried that it might injure them.

    From the http://www.gov.uk site

    That link isnt helpful and I doubt the law says what you say. Although our interpretations sound very similar tbf

    The law says: “a dog shall be regarded as dangerously out of control on any occasion on which there are grounds for reasonable apprehension that it will injure any person, whether or not it actually does so

    I seem to meet many dangerously out-of-control dogs whilst out cycling and running, although strangely the owners don’t seem to comprehend this.

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