The Pedalshift Project 139: Dealing with loose dogs on bike tour

What’s the most controversial subject in bike touring? No not bike helmets… no, not earbuds… it’s how to deal with loose dogs on bike tour! On this episode, I give my two cents on how to deal with an angry canine that interrupts your pedaling.

The Pedalshift Project 139: Dealing with loose dogs on bike tour

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Follow Ups

  • Back from a road trip to Oklahoma… not a huge bike place, but there are definitely parts that are getting more infrastructure. Oddly enough a ton of scooter sitings in Norman, home of OU.
  • Heard from George cycling from Budapest through the Greek Islands.
  • Head from John who tackled the C&O and ended up on the road detour (10-12% grades!) around the washout. Despite his having to call the ride early, I’m hearing the trail is slowly starting to dry out.
  • Heard from Randall and he pointed out something about the Katy… St. Louis *does* have train service to Chicago, so either I made life way more difficult for myself or they added service I could have used in May!
  • Speaking of the Katy… the Michigan guys checked in! They did the GAP and had a great time, but ran into the steep incline at Ohiopyle. Like I said before… people like it, but swear they’ll never do that campsite again once they do!
  • Welcome to the Pedalshift Society… Byron Paterson!

The Lab: Tips to Handle Loose Dogs on Bike Tour

  • They are acting on instinct. 
  • The vast majority are all bark, no bite
  • If you are afraid of dogs, my words aren’t going to overcome that! We all have our own experiences with animals, so zero judgment.
  • options
  • Consider stopping. Many, many times dogs are chasing for the sake of chasing. They do nothing once they have caught up.
  • If stopping is not possible or preferred
  • Non-contact deterrent 
    • LOUD YELLING OF NEGATIVE WORD COMMANDS!
    • Ultra high frequency devices like Dazer
  • Non-lethal contact
    • water bottle
    • pepper spray (but, but but…. be mindful this might not be legal everywhere)
  • Please do not
    • Hit or kick dogs unless you are legitimately being attacked
    • Use bee or wasp spray, as recommended by some. It’s poison.
    • Use a firearm or other projectile weapon. Some of you may choose to carry if it’s legal to do so, but follow your safety training and find an alternative to using your weapon whenever possible.

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You’ve been hearing about Jason Kent and his music for many fine episodes. Their latest album may be their best yet. Go get it.

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