Stranger Danger!

Warning… rant ahead.  We’ll wish you a happy Thorsday though.

photo.JPGYesterday, we set out on our walk.  Around the mile mark, we encounter the end of state maintenance on our road, and as fate would have it, the school bus was turning around, so we had to wait.  There was a little pheasant or some other ground bird running around in the field, and of course, my girls went nuts while we waited.  As we headed onward, I noticed a strange-to-me dog lurking at the woodline, and thought little of it.

About a quarter of a mile in, Gretchen stopped trotting out in front with Sissy and dropped into a tight “heel” position, which is her way of telling me she’s frightened.  Our farmer neighbor who lets us use their paths passed about then, and after we finished waving and stepped back in the road, I saw we were being followed by a LARGE Saint Bernard (mix?) and a Blue Heeler.  We kept walking, because I hoped they’d go back “home”, but I soon realized they were steadily gaining on us, and the Saint had that poor bird, dead, in its mouth.

I phoned the Knight and ordered a RAPID pick-up.  We kept walking, and I tried to emit a calm I didn’t feel.  About the time I was pondering our options, the cavalry rode in.  I loaded the girls quickly, and as we pulled off, Gg barked her head off and the strangers headed for the river.

We live in a rural area, and I know most of the dogs, but we’re seeing far too many loose dogs of late.  I honestly don’t know what I would have done if the Knight hadn’t been at home to rush to our rescue, or if he’d delayed even a moment longer.   Maybe they would have been scared off if I fussed, but Pepe – the dog that bit Gretchen – wasn’t.  Dogs pick up on Gg’s stress too, and feed off of it.  My ordinarily sweet Sis goes into protective mother mode, and the other dogs pick that up too…

I do carry doggy mace, but again… we were over a mile from home on a dead-end road. 

Thoughts?  Suggestions?  



13 Responses to “Stranger Danger!”

  1. Big Hairy Meeting Thorsday « Chan Knits Says:

    […] post over on the girls’ blog is rather ranty and serious, so here I want to focus on the thankfuls, […]

  2. Nancy Says:

    I think you handled the situation very well. I doubt I would have thought of calling someone.

    Even though I don’t own a dog, I’ve noticed a LOT of loose dogs on my walks, too. Like Gretchen, it makes me nervous, so I’m eager to see the suggestions that other readers will give you.

  3. AlisonH Says:

    I’m so glad you’re all okay and that he could come!

  4. Kristi Says:

    I wish I had a suggestion. It does sound like you handled the situation well.

  5. Phantom, Thunder, Ciara, and Lightning Says:

    Oh yes, Mom’s worst fear on our walks – loose dogs and stupid humans. Mom usually yells really loud at the other dogs to go back – sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. And of course, once the humans show up, they say something dumb like “oh, they won’t bother you”. So not the point.

    Wish we had some better ideas.

    Woos – Phantom, Thunder, Ciara, and Lightning

  6. Katherine Says:

    We seem to be having a lot of stray dogs in our neighborhood lately and I see more and more of our neighbors walking with big sticks. I don’t know how that would work because if a dog is big enough (as in St. Bernard) a stick is not much defense. I think you and the Knight did just the right thing. Macy would want to stay and fight but Max (and I) believe that a well executed retreat always trumps fighting a battle!!

  7. scrabblequeen Says:

    Scary stuff…but you certainly handled it well! Sasha can barely handle seeing dogs in leads when we walk…loose dogs, BIG loose dogs would freak her (and me) right out!

  8. km Says:

    My brother told me I should carry bear spray. I’ve considered it. He told me I’d have to get too close to use pepper spray/or let the would be attacker get to close. With your situations I would consider it.

  9. Mitch and Molly Says:

    Thank goodness the Knight came to your rescue! This is a scary thing to have happen!

  10. Mom Says:

    I carry a can of “wasp and hornet” spray as it will shoot farthest of all and every dog that I’ve used it on hates it and there is no chalange!

  11. Nichole Says:

    My first thought was the dogs following you may have just wanted attention and to get play… and were not necessarily out to harm. Had they been, I would bet they would have ran faster after you/the girls.
    My second thought is why so many loose, unfamiliar dogs? Could they have been abandoned? Lost from home? We are dealing with FAR too many lost dogs up here in the past few years and it’s an every day occurance to see a new lost pup posted. Perhaps the followers were trying to catch up and ask for help getting them home? I realize your girls aren’t interested in helping others, after what they’ve been through, but just a thought…
    A third thought…. would hate to see any dog hit in the face with wasp/hornet spray as someone mentioned above. That could literally mean the loss of an eye — and not all loose dogs are aggressive or looking for a fight.

    Glad the Knight came to rescue the girls so quickly though!

  12. Mitch and Molly Says:

    We just came from Bocci’s blog and couldn’t help thinking of you.

    Happy Easter, Sissy and Gretchen!

    Love ya lots,
    Mitch and Molly

  13. HoundDogMom Says:

    We are sorry you continue to have the encounters with stray dogs. I think you should carry some sort of mace or spray or maybe just one of those loud air horns would work. I know they scare the crap out of me and sure would to a stray dog I would hope. So glad you had your phone and rescue could arrive in time. Sniffs, The HoundDogs

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