close calls w/animals

Discussion in 'The Bike Cafe' started by Ed Roy, Sep 22, 2003.

  1. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    Go back and read carefully what Memphman said, all questions and answers wrt this incident. I see no indication he got any pleasure from this act. Sure he says the ride was more pleasurable, but that's because he no longer had a dog trying to attack anymore, not because he derived pleasure out of fighting it off with the bleach. I am a detached observer here. I think you're reading something into this that isn't there. I don't like killing animals either, but you are jumping to conclusions that are not warranted.

    Consider that people have the right to ride peacefully down a public street and to protect themselves against vicious dogs that are not penned up. Sure, he could have called animal control and reported a dog problem, but he probably would have still had to make sure that the catchers really followed through with it and cured the problem. This takes time and effort. It's more the responsibility of the neighbors to report such a public nuisance, not a rider riding by who doesn't even have time to look at the address before he calls in the complaint. He would still need to be prepared to deal with it the next day, just in case the dog was still there.

    I had a similar problem last summer with two dogs (a german shepard mix and rottweiler mix) that two girls would walk with leashes in their hands but not clipped to the dogs at about the same time as I went to work. I would go through this area which was a school ground bordered by a large field. There they would be as I turned the corner.

    I have had much experience with dogs because I used to deliver circulars with the Newspaper bag front and back hanging from the shoulder setup. I used to do this on foot, about a 6 mile walk. I know how to deal with an attacking animal, and I can put terror into them like even I find hard to believe. I think they sense that I must be a little bit crazy, and they back off. I surprise myself with my ferocity, but it's usually a bluff on my part. One thing I could do (but haven't because they believe my bluff), and have heard will work if you are a good punter and your life is being threatened, is to time it perfectly on foot, and kick the dog's head right under the chin. Even a pit bull, if you're a good kicker, will die instantly with a broken neck.

    But in this particular instance above, the dogs charged me from the field, and I stood my ground, feet on each side of the bike. They don't like to see you stand and face them, especially if you give them a good snarl. Believe me, the adrenalin pump will make you very convincing, and the psychology is that you are on the attack, that you are not afraid of them and that they are falling into your trap, not the other way around. In this case, the dogs ran away, but I noticed they were watching for me to turn my back. I got on my bike and kept looking at them. I wanted them to realize that I wasn't going to let them just eat me up. They were going to have to take whatever I could dish out to them. I didn't have any weopons. If it got right down to it and they attacked me. I'd try the head maneuver. Also a strong kick in the gut right by the back legs if you can't get the other angle on the head.

    After that close call, I began to carry my bear spray (cayenne pepper base: range 40 ft). I tired of carrying that after about a month, however. Then they bothered me again when I quit carrying it: Murphy's law. The last time, I told the girls I would call the police, that they were supposed to be leashing the dogs at all times in public.

    But this was an empty bluff too because the police would want to know where the dog owners live, and I couldn't really hang around to find out which house they go to. Otherwise the police would do a drive through the neighborhood, see no dogs, and then drive on.

    Sure it sounds like it would be easy to respond in the way you describe, but the devil is in the details. What you're suggesting amounts to bending over backwards to save the owner's property (the dogs) when they refuse to follow the law. You may feel that dogs are man's best friend, and that they deserve to be accorded human rights under the law, but the law doesn't work that way. They are treated like articles of property. I'm speaking about America. I doubt that it differs much in other countries either. So when you say that Memphman is being sick to protect himself in that manner, I don't see that he has broken any laws. I wonder how you would feel if a little 4 year old kid happened to be running by and got killed by that same dog. Maybe it would have. I have heard so many accounts of dogs attacking little kids, disfiguring them for life or sometimes killing them. I don't feel any irrational remorse for such creatures that are clearly a public risk. The owner is at fault, for sure. Don't blame the rider.
     


  2. lumpy

    lumpy New Member

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    Jakob, I'm not directing my posts at you. It's mempman that has my fur up - if you'll pardon the pun.
    He went back another day with a his H20 bottle full of bleach (sounds pretty premeditated to me) and got the dog with bleach in the face. He didn't have to go there. He knew the dog would be there. Yet he chose to deal with the dog on his own. Read again what he wrote. "Years ago when I was training on this one route. Near the top of this climb, was a farmhouse, with a dog that would always chase. sure made you climb the last little bit faster. This never really bothered me. Until my friend got bit and the damn owner never did anything about. So on my next ride, I allowed the mutt to get close and emptied my entire waterbottle on his face. This sure made him stop as my bottle was filled with bleach. Never saw this dog again".
    In his subsequent post he said "So what! The dog got what he deserved. Made our ride much more enjoyable'. Sure sounds to me like he enjoyed it.
    Now don't get me wrong, I have absolutely no problem with someone defending themself. memphman didn't do that however. He sought out the dog another day and slowed down - "allowed the mutt to get close" so he could spray bleach in it's eyes. Use your imagination to think how that dog suffered.
    He didn't have to go after the dog but he did. That's what I have a problem with. And I think it's a sick way to do it. I would have called animal control - in case there was a little kid in the area that could be hurt.

    gntlmn, I believe in giving the law a chance before I take it into my own hands - and risk getting sued for killing someones pet.

    FYI, I am sober.

    Tim
     
  3. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    I still say you are being a bit irrational in insisting that Memphman go out of his way to avoid a hazard which should not be there. If anyone is going to get sued here, it would be the owner of that dog. In fact, I bet Memphman could have collected a few bucks out of that guy after the local government got done fining the hell out of him for not restraining his dog. Don't forget, we have the right to use the public roads that we pay taxes on.

    It may be more honorable to call the animal control, but avoiding the area and doing nothing is least honorable because then you encourage the dog owner to lay claim to public domain (ie, the public roads). Memphman did the public a service by ridding this area of a public menace.
     
  4. lumpy

    lumpy New Member

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    The dog wasn't a hazard to memphman. He could outrun it like he said he's done in the past. He didn't go out of his way to avoid the dog. He didn't call animal control or the cops. He went looking for the dog. When was the last time you lugged a H20 bottle full of bleach around on your ride? He slowed down so the dog could get close enough to him so he could blast him with the bleach and impart his cruel vengance.
    You're absolutely right about having the right to use the public roads. You're also right about suing the owner who's responsible for a dangerous animal. However memphman opens himself up to a lawsuit himself and criminal prosecution for animal cruelty by taking the law into his own hands.
    I think memphman should have exercised his legal responsibility by calling animal control and the cops to report a dangerous animal.
    It's his slower buddy who had the problem with the dog - why didn't he call the cops. Afterall, he's the one who got bit? Why did memphman get involved anyway?
    What memphman did and you're approving of is vigilanteism. Your arguement is the same as carrying a gun with you on a ride and shooting motorists who endanger you and your right to use the public roads.
    Again, I have no problem with defending yourself. He wasn't doing that. He was after revenge for his friend.

    Tim
     
  5. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    Wow! You have a way of twisting the argument around to include a barrage of irrelevant assertions.

    Fact 1: Dog was attacking.
    Fact 2: Rider protected himself.
    Fact 3: Dog was not in its yard or on private property.
    Fact 4: Dog was on public use road.
    Fact 5: Owner did not restrain the animal.
    Fact 6: Animal control could not have stopped the animal while it was attacking. Attack happens in split seconds.
    Fact 7: Riders had no legal obligation to call animal control.

    You are beginning to sound like an animal rights extremist. The problem is that the media has humanized animals so much beginning with the animations of Disney followed by many other companies. Perhaps this has influenced you and has led you to be irrational in this matter. You are placing the rights of animals above the rights of humans. You are saying that people have no right to defend themselves on attack from an animal. You are sorely mistaken.

    It's a big stretch to say that carrying bleach or another weapon to fend off a direct attack by an animal is the same as vigilantism. Vigilantism is after the fact. The incident described above is fending off a direct attack. Sure an attack happened the day before, but the riders did not chase down the animal; it came after them. If the dog didn't come out and attack again, it would not have been harmed.

    Get the facts straight!

    Carrying a gun and shooting motorists? You're really jumping to conclusions here. You're saying repelling a dog upon direct attack is the same as carrying a gun and shooting motorists? I suppose if you are the dog owner in question, you have just talked yourself into some time in prison for going out and shooting motorists. You better just make sure you pen up your dog next time.
     
  6. ccdriver

    ccdriver New Member

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    I was going back to Livermore on Mines Rd. and I was going down hill I came around a turn and there was a mountain lion in the middle of the road it took off running . Sure scared me that thing was big.
     
  7. lumpy

    lumpy New Member

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    gntlmn,
    WOW, you have a way of twisting things around to make it look like memphman was only defending himself.

    I think you should go back and reread what memphman wrote. He went back looking for the dog - don't you see that? He said he was never bothered by the dog 'till his friend got bit. That's when he took action. He was looking for vengence.

    fact 1: obviously
    fact 2: memphman had to slow down to "protect himself"
    fact 3: true
    fact 4: true
    fact 5: true
    fact 6: he didn't ever call animal control - why? His friend was bit - wouldn't you? What about rabies? I sure would have if I or a friend got bit. Why didn't they?
    fact 7: true, but there is a moral obligation to protect others isn't there? Like little kids that could come cycling by?

    The media has anthropomorphized animals in our culture to be sure but that has nothing to do with what he did. As a hunter, I guess I'm kind of far from an animal rights extremist but perhaps not in your mind. Perhaps as a hunter, I have a better understanding of animals and death than you do.

    Wasn't it vigilanteism to go out the next day with a bottle full of bleach and "allow the mutt to get close and emptied my entire waterbottle on his face"?

    Tim
     
  8. Memphmann

    Memphmann New Member

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    What makes a dog any more stupidier then us? They are in my opinion smarter. Do not see them causing wars, destroying the environment and making huge bombs. I think you are stupidier then my dog for that statement.

    I have a 103lbs dog that would never chase a bike, cat, rabbit, ect.. Why, because I am a smart owner and have trained him not to. Remember a dog is only as smart as its owner. They are like children, have to be taught how to act. Then again, there are alot of stupid parents/owners out there.

    That dog got what he deserved, and hopefully so did the neglecting owner......

    Memph

    Need a licence to drive. 18 to vote, 19 (21 US) to drink. Need nothing to breed or own a pet. This is shameful.....
     
  9. larry barr

    larry barr New Member

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    Cant' condone what was done to the dog. He was a product of his environment. Perhaps he had bitten others and should have been put down. If that is so than it should have been done humanely. Lets put this issue to rest now.
     
  10. Memphmann

    Memphmann New Member

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    Sure missed alot while at work. Now it is my turn to speak, so listen.

    As I have always been a strong rider, the dg never bothered me. Heck a cheetah would have a hard time catching me. But what if I had an off day, mechanical problem, etc... The dog would catch me. We were never sure what the dog would do if it catch someone. Well we found out, the painful way. Yes, the local SPCA was called. They were going to look into it!!

    It was not like I had to change my route to find the dog. Or call it out of yard. Just went on my merry way and followed our same training route. Except this time I carried protection. We now knew what the dog WOULD do. So he chased and I protected myself. Had a tear in my eye as I heard the dog yipping in pure pain. I knew what I had done. Did I enjoy it, no. Am I sorry, no. Would I do it again, yes.

    So before you read between the lines. Ask someone that was there. Were you there?

    Memph

    eye for an eye.......
     
  11. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    If you customarily have a dog try to attack you in a particular area, sure you are "looking for" the dog, but that doesn't mean you are hunting the dog. The dog was getting close because it was on the attack. A bicyclist can go any speed he wants on a public road. Otherwise you would see signs that said something like, "Caution: Do Not Ride Bicycle Less Than 35 MPH, Dangerous Dog Loose Nearby". It's perfectly legal to ride at a pace that slower riders would go.

    Vengeance and vigilantism are two different things, but you equate them. They are not the same. You can get vengeance in a number of ways. One is by calling animal control. That is a form of vengeance. Carrying protection to fend off an attacking dog is legal and moral. The dog was attacking. Yes, he probably was looking for vengeance, but he was not hunting down the dog. That's quite a different thing. If Memphman would have scaled the fence and gone into the owner's private property to destroy the animal, the owner would have had the right to protect his property. He did no such thing. This act was an act of self defense. You may not like it because you have feelings for this vicious animal, but that's what it was, plain and simple.

    When you say that people "have to" call animal control, you are basically making a statement about slavery. You are saying that Memphman has to waste his time to call animal control and file all the reports. This is not a legal obligation. If you say it is a moral "obligation", then that is slavery: working for no wages. It might be an act of morality to call animal control, but it is not a moral "obligation". What they did about the dog bite is not mentioned. Most bites don't break the skin. Maybe this was worse. I doubt you'd get the whole story at this point.

    I didn't say that the anthropomorphizing of animals had anything to do with Memphman's behavior. I said it had to do with your reaction. You are putting this dog in the same category as an innocent human being. The law doesn't treat dogs like humans.

    As a hunter, yes, you have probably killed a lot more animals than I have, but it doesn't give you any more understanding of this particular case than I have. I have seen many an instance where people have followed the normal pattern of the law as you suggest: calling animal control, filing complaints, etc. In the meantime, the animal gets loose and hurts someone. I know of instances where a neighbor used to jog with two pit bulls unleashed. They attacked many animals and several little children. I would have wholeheartedly condoned someone giving those animals a good smash of the skull to kill them before they mamed this one little boy for life. Luckily the little boy lived. But while the owner was waiting to go to trial for that occurrence, guess what? He went jogging with his dogs again, and one of them attacked my dog while I was standing right there next to my dog. It took about 5 minutes to get that pit bull off him. One of the neighbors kept pounding a steel pipe to his body. That pit bull was really something else. I don't think they feel pain in the heat of battle.

    With this in mind, perhaps it would have been more humane for Memphman to have used a baseball bat and to make sure the animal doesn't feel any pain when he kills the dog during its attack. But consider that you might carry a weapon for a long time if the animal is not where you expect it to be. Read above my account on this. A baseball bat would be heavy and unwieldy on a bike ride. Anything you carry on a bike is going to be a nuisance. A water bottle fits naturally into it's holder and is easy to reach. My bear spray was in my pocket. I doubt I could have pulled it out on time. I'd say using the water bottle was much more effective.

    So I conclude that morality can be met in different ways. I don't see where Memphman broke any laws. I don't dispute his morality. I agree that he satisfied his need for vengeance, but that in itself is not immoral. It was in an act of self defense.
     
  12. mfbarnes

    mfbarnes New Member

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    My son and I were riding at dusk on a country road that we frequently ride during the day. On the way down the road I saw what appeared to be a dead snake (not an unusual site in south Florida). Just as I approached, the snake coilled (spelling?) and my son said that it struck at my foot as I went safely by. He veared around it and said that it was a rattle snake. On our way back it was pitch black and we had our lights on. A truck passed us going the other way. A few second later I saw in my light another snake coiled, with its head up and appearing ready to strike. I veared to the right and missed this one by several yards. So much for a relaxing ride!

    Mike
     
  13. Memphmann

    Memphmann New Member

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    You are something else. You must type faster then I can read.

    I also had a cause when a rottie attacked my dog. I was kicking the crap out of this rottie and it's female owner was yelling at me? Go figure.

    If I rode into this dogs yard or called it. Then my solution would have been unjust. But I just rode the same route. The dog did the same as always. I just protected myself......

    Memph
     
  14. lumpy

    lumpy New Member

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    OK gntlmn, can we call a truce and respectfully agree that we disagree?

    Tim
     
  15. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    Probably about time now. On to new things.
     
  16. Jakub

    Jakub New Member

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    Hmm... that's a real philosophical breakthrough! Let me see if I can follow this line of thought. Dogs don't make things that make people die and that makes the smart. OK, then how about say sand on the beach? The sand must be even smarter than dogs. Not only it exhibits all the dog's smart behaviors but goes even further: does not consume any energy, is completely neutral to the environment, and people take their shoes off to walk on it! Thats' smart!

    That's true, but all of them are convinced that their dogs are the smartest creatures on the planet. Both my son and I have been bitten by dogs several times and guess what did the owners say when confronted by the victim. Every time is the same line: "I don't understand how this could happen, my dog never bit anyone before!" I am now immune to stories about smart dogs and your puppy will get pepper sprayed at the first sign of aggressive behavior, regardless of its IQ.
     
  17. Memphmann

    Memphmann New Member

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    I have to agree. If my dog ever ran toward another dog, person, bike, etc, without cause. I would be the 1st one to snap his neck. If a dog can not obey, then it is useless. Like I told everyone when my son was born. If dog ever snapped at baby, that was his only change. Now that my son is older, the roles have changed.

    My statement was intended to say that as humans, we are bad, stupid, wasteful species. Take it how you like .......

    Memph
     
  18. cfsmtb

    cfsmtb New Member

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    mmmmeeeeoooow, an enjoyable little cat fight via a cycling usergroup. FYI, unleashed dawgs also attack other dawgs on leads. I've had to contend with vicious animals attacking me on the bike, also, killing one of my cats, attacking my blind 16yo dog and my reaction wasn't all girly, nice and politically correct. animals rights vs. self defence vs. vigilantism vs. animal control vs. anthropomorphing cute & cuddly animals. A slippery slope indeed. Time for another topic/thread, please....
     
  19. gntlmn

    gntlmn New Member

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    The "low earth orbit": I like that. I'll remember that one.
     
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