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Biking and bikers

willhslade
March 1st, 2010, 12:41 PM
Hey,

I'm a dog lover, I've got two of my own. But I ran into a weird situation today.

I was biking to work, and this woman had two dogs off leash. Medium sized labradors. They gave chase and I found out that you can't outrun dogs on a bike. I got off the bike. They were barking loudly and aggressively the whole time. I tried talking calmly, but they wouldn't stop. I was a little bit scared of escalating my voice to frighten them, but in retrospect, would it have worked? I imagine I will run into this again, and I'd like to have something effective, and ideally nonviolent.

Thanks,
Will

Melinda
March 1st, 2010, 12:49 PM
you see a lot of the bikers on the bike path with mini air horns (like at hockey games) strapped to the handle bars, not only do they use it for dogs, but bears, wolves etc

Love4himies
March 1st, 2010, 12:57 PM
Boy, can I relate. I Bike 40km's into work along a hwy and have dogs run after me. Next season I am going to be carrying pepper spray :frustrated:. Not sure if you clip in, but I do and I can't stop and get off my bike very quickly and with the cars whizzing by at 100km/hr, I can't swerve off the paved shoulder.

As for out biking a dog, I can get up to 35km/hr, 50 on a downhill, and I can't out bike them a larger dog. Boy can they run.

Gail P
March 2nd, 2010, 01:15 PM
As for out biking a dog, I can get up to 35km/hr, 50 on a downhill, and I can't out bike them a larger dog. Boy can they run.

They sure can run. A free running dog can hit much higher speeds than one that is harnessed and pulling something, and my GPS has logged my 4-dog team doing a maximum speed of 25.7mph on the sled, which I believe is a little over 40km/hr. My friend who skijors has her GPS set in metric and has hit the high 50's and even over 60km. That's not to say that either her dogs or mine can maintain those high speeds, but when a dog is motivated they sure can move. And nothing seems to motivate dogs like the thrill of the chase. In a lot of cases stopping the bike would help break the dog free of that "chase mode", but if they're agressive then you have that to deal with. I don't know the answer but maybe as others have suggested, an air horn or pepper spray would help. Or a rattle can with pebbles in it to shake at them. If you do have to stop I'd be having a chat with the dogs owners that's for sure. And if they're acting aggressive take note of the dogs and owners description and report them (or better yet, take a picture if you have a camera phone on you). My sister once wrecked a bike and got hurt when she was trying to avoid a dog that ran after her (or into her way, can't remember now as it was a long time ago).

I just had another thought. When it comes to noises deterring some dogs, I wonder if some kind of spinners or flappers on the bike spokes would have any effect. Anyone remember clothes pegging a baseball card to their spokes (oops, did I just admit that? No dear bro, I don't know what happened to your cards!)

Melinda
March 2nd, 2010, 01:27 PM
I remember doing that , but would it deter them? We've been chased on the motorcycle....and believe me, its noisy....

Gail P
March 2nd, 2010, 02:24 PM
I remember doing that , but would it deter them? We've been chased on the motorcycle....and believe me, its noisy....

No idea, it was just a thought. :shrug: Like maybe something "different" sounding about the bike might make dogs think twice.

Longblades
March 3rd, 2010, 11:00 AM
First of all, you should report that woman. You could have been badly hurt if knocked off your bike. Shared trail or not, her dogs should be under her control and chasing you and barking aggressively at you is not acceptable behaviour.

What worked for us was an ultrasonic dog deterrent. http://ezinearticles.com/?How-an-Ultrasonic-Dog-Repeller-Works&id=2484278
We had troubles with a neighbour's two dogs who were always out loose, off leash on their own on our country roads.

As a side benefit, it also worked some years later to alert our cat when she went deaf. We could call her with it.

Dog Dancer
March 4th, 2010, 11:18 AM
I think an airhorn would be a good idea. I wouldn't want to use the pepper spray because I wouldn't want to injure the dogs, unless they were being outright aggressive. Now that said, I would want to use the pepper spray on the owner who let them chase you. I think putting noisy things on your wheels would only attract the dogs further, but I could be wrong.