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Old 02-15-2009, 07:50 PM
 
1,117 posts, read 1,801,952 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasHorseLady View Post
If you moved from the big city to a rural small town, chances are there are no leash laws And if the dogs bark but remain on their own property (even if they rush at you), then there would likely be no violation even in places where there are leash laws. You can carry pepper spray with you, or you can carry a spray bottle that contains dog repellent in it (same basic thing), and the dogs will learn to keep their distance.

However, it seems to me that a large part of your issue is that you're not getting apologies for the dog's behavior, and that perhaps the owners WANT the dogs to appear menacing to people who they don't know (it may not be people in the neighborhood that they are concerned about, but people coming in from outside the neighborhood that might not be so nice) and that, I can't help you with.

I do wonder at the fact that 90% of the dogs that you pass charge you. That seems excessive and I'm wondering what it is that's inspiring this reaction. Not to say that you're inviting it or that you are to blame in any way, but wondering what it is that's causing such a huge percentage of dogs to react to you in this fashion.
I'd like to know that too. I'm 5'6", 138 pounds. I wear a white t-shirt and grey sweatpants. I listen to an iPOD when I walk, so I'm usually absorbed in that and not even paying attention to much around me.

My guess is that dog's are very territorial and protective. When i walk past their property, they go into "protection mode". They bark ferociously to warn me off, and some of them will actually come running toward me (to further intimidate me). They see me as a threat, and they instinctively want to let me know that they will protect their owners and their territory.

Well fine. But let's face it, it's overkill and it's inappropriate. And I get so angry that owners will not train their dogs appropriately.
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Old 02-15-2009, 08:18 PM
 
1,662 posts, read 4,045,375 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FormerCaliforniaGirl View Post
I'd like to know that too. I'm 5'6", 138 pounds. I wear a white t-shirt and grey sweatpants. I listen to an iPOD when I walk, so I'm usually absorbed in that and not even paying attention to much around me.

My guess is that dog's are very territorial and protective. When i walk past their property, they go into "protection mode". They bark ferociously to warn me off, and some of them will actually come running toward me (to further intimidate me). They see me as a threat, and they instinctively want to let me know that they will protect their owners and their territory.

Well fine. But let's face it, it's overkill and it's inappropriate. And I get so angry that owners will not train their dogs appropriately.
Well, but ...

My little dog will do that. She will run up to the edge of my property and bark to let you know that it's her yard. That's just being a dog. But she would not "attack" you. And truth be told, if you glared at her, she'd probably turn tail and run.

If she stays in her yard and you stay on the sidewalk and it's just her barking at you that bothers you, you won't get an apology from me as an owner. She's a dog.

I would bet that most of the dogs you are encountering have no intention of hurting you, they are just announcing to their owners that someone is near their yard. That's just what they do. If one actually threatens you, I'd speak directly to the owner about it and contact animal control if need be. But for just barking at you when you walk by, naaaa, welcome to the neighborhood!

If you want to get on friendlier terms with the dogs, carry some dog treats in your pocket. Ask the owner if it's okay to give one to the dog when you walk by. You will be the most popular walker in the neighborhood!! The dogs will see you and come wagging their tails! Toss them the treat before they get too close for comfort and they will soon learn to love you and probably stop barking at you.
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Old 02-15-2009, 08:20 PM
 
Location: Central Texas
20,490 posts, read 38,410,774 times
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Yeah, some dogs do that. I think most of us have experienced that - some dogs are just that way. But I'd have to say that my experience is just the opposite of yours - when I go walking in a neighborhood that has dogs, maybe 10% of them bark, and most of those don't charge me, they just bark a lot (which can be annoying, but not terrifying). (In fact, I think I've actually been charged by a dog maybe one or twice in my life.) The vast majority may be alert, but they don't cause a ruckus like you describe. That holds for city or small town (country, like where I live, is a different thing - most of the dogs don't bark at you unless you're actually approaching the house down the drive, though there is the "doggie net" by which dogs communicate with each other over long distances via barking - fascinating to listen to them passing messages one dog to the next to the next).

So, it's got to be either something about you, or something about the neighborhood that you walk in, if this is the first time in your life that you've had this experience.

Since we can't change the dogs, or their owners, perhaps we can figure out another variable to modify to make sure you don't have this experience in future!
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Old 02-15-2009, 08:33 PM
 
1,117 posts, read 1,801,952 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Samantha S View Post
Well, but ...

My little dog will do that. She will run up to the edge of my property and bark to let you know that it's her yard. That's just being a dog. But she would not "attack" you. And truth be told, if you glared at her, she'd probably turn tail and run.

If she stays in her yard and you stay on the sidewalk and it's just her barking at you that bothers you, you won't get an apology from me as an owner. She's a dog.
But how is a person to know when the dog just intends to stay on their property and bark, vs. the dog's who intend to attack?

And how would you feel if you were walking little Fido past my house, and I ran out to the edge of my driveway and yelled at your dog and scared her/him to death? Is it okay if I terrify your dog as long as I do it on my property? Or would you feel like you should be able to take your dog for a stroll around the block without your dog being screamed at and terrified. Is that too much to ask?

Well, that's how I feel when your dogs scare me.
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Old 02-15-2009, 08:47 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FormerCaliforniaGirl View Post
But how is a person to know when the dog just intends to stay on their property and bark, vs. the dog's who intend to attack?

And how would you feel if you were walking little Fido past my house, and I ran out to the edge of my driveway and yelled at your dog and scared her/him to death? Is it okay if I terrify your dog as long as I do it on my property? Or would you feel like you should be able to take your dog for a stroll around the block without your dog being screamed at and terrified. Is that too much to ask?

Well, that's how I feel when your dogs scare me.
So then I think we're establishing that you are afraid of dogs in general.

In general, it's normal for people to own dogs. In general, it's normal for dogs to bark when people walk by their yards. In general, it's not normal for dogs to attack people. So - generally speaking - the owners are not concerned that their dogs will attack and they expect them to bark when someone walks by. This does not mean the dogs are not appropriately trained. This is also why they offer no apologies - because the dog has done nothing "wrong".

However, none of this changes the very real fact that you are terrified by this. So what can you do? Yes, you should be able to walk your neighborhood without fear. But to expect no dog to ever bark at you is too tall of an order. It's not a reasonable expectation on your part.

I stand by my suggestion to carry some treats and make friends with the dogs in your neighborhood. Ask the owners to allow you to bring the dogs a treat and allow them to sniff you, pet them and allow them to get to know you. This should minimize their behavior.
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Old 02-15-2009, 08:49 PM
 
Location: Central Texas
20,490 posts, read 38,410,774 times
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That's actually quite a good suggestion about the treats. It allows you to take some control of the situation, thus alleviating some of the fear, and it eventually teaches the dogs that you're not someone to be barked at but someone to anticipate with pleasure.
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Old 02-15-2009, 08:57 PM
 
1,117 posts, read 1,801,952 times
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I guess I just feel that if an owner knows their dog is going to be aggressive and bark in a vicious manner, then the owner should be courteous and keep the dog tied up when it's in the front yard. That's all I ask. If the dog barks at me, and I see it's tied up, then I'm going to feel reasonably secure that the dog isn't going to attack. Maybe the owner knows its dog won't attack, but how am I supposed to know that??

I can tell by the defensive tone of some of the posts here that many dog owners simply don't understand how intimidating and frightening their dogs can be. Maybe the owner is certain their dog won't attack, but an innocent passerby has no way of knowing this.

At any rate, if I were to speak with the owners of the most offensive dogs, I'm sure they would just be defensive and probably slam the door in my face. I see no point. Dog owners seem, to me, to be somewhat unreasonable.

I'll stick with my treadmill.
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Old 02-15-2009, 09:02 PM
 
Location: Northern B.C, canada
13 posts, read 95,464 times
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I live in a small town too and when dogs come charging at me I used to freak out and run. Then my bf said" Don't ever run, watch this" So this dog came charging at us, he turned around and started stomping towards the dog saying GET GET. The dog stopped and just sat there. When it followed us again, my bf turned around and pretended to chase it home. He said to me" Never show fear, show them who's boss" It's weird because when we walk past this dog, he barks but never comes out and chases us anymore. LOL
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Old 02-15-2009, 09:02 PM
 
1,662 posts, read 4,045,375 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FormerCaliforniaGirl View Post
At any rate, if I were to speak with the owners of the most offensive dogs, I'm sure they would just be defensive and probably slam the door in my face. I see no point. Dog owners seem, to me, to be somewhat unreasonable.

I'll stick with my treadmill.
Your choice certainly. We were just trying to offer practical advice.

FWIW, it seems you have trouble discerning "tone of voice" in dogs (and people too - you seem to assume the worst) so perhaps your way is best.
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Old 02-15-2009, 09:11 PM
 
1,117 posts, read 1,801,952 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Samantha S View Post
Your choice certainly. We were just trying to offer practical advice.

FWIW, it seems you have trouble discerning "tone of voice" in dogs (and people too - you seem to assume the worst) so perhaps your way is best.
Yes, but I think the "practical advice" was all about what I need to do to accomodate the dogs' rudeness (for lack of a better term), and not what the dog owners need to do to keep their dogs in line. And I don't think that's right.
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