How To Protect Yourself From Off-Leash Dangerous Dogs That Chase Cyclists

, How To Protect Yourself From Off-Leash Dangerous Dogs That Chase Cyclists

Dogs like to chase bikes, even “good dogs.” A dog bite is not the only danger; being shoved into oncoming traffic, being knocked off your bike, or flying over your handlebars are all bad scenarios. We bought a Dazer from Amazon and it works. There. You don’t have to read any further. It works.

Cyclists fear dogs – that’s why headlines like “Dog runs out in front Giro d’Italia peloton” strike fear in our bike-loving brains. “But with just under 40km left of the stage to race, disaster almost struck the peloton as a dog wandered out in the road, forcing riders to take evasive action to avoid a fall.” And, “There have been plenty of cases of dogs interrupting bike races, sometimes with catastrophic results.”

, How To Protect Yourself From Off-Leash Dangerous Dogs That Chase Cyclists

We Use It. It Works. Get One! Two!

This device stops the dog. You don’t have to read any further if you don’t want; it works. If you want one, then buy one, and you’ll have it. Just remember to take it with you.

A friend of mine recommended the Dog Dazer II Ultrasonic Dog Deterrent; she walks her beagle and collie regularly, and prefers to avoid altercations with other dogs while out exercising. It works for her.

We’ve been using them for nearly three years now. I waited to write about it until we had tried it on several big mean nasty dogs, and it works. You point it at them, then click the button a second or two, and they back down, stop, and even turn and go home.

, How To Protect Yourself From Off-Leash Dangerous Dogs That Chase Cyclists

How It Works

You point it at the barking / charging dog, and press the button a few times.

It does not “zap” the dog or send them an electrical impulse – it’s simply a high-pitched noise that breaks their concentration, and they don’t like it.

The device breaks their “OODA Loop.” That’s the “observe, orient, decide, act” decision-making sequence.

Even a dog uses this four-step approach to decision-making. First, they focus on filtering available information – noise! motion! Next they put it in context – bike! fun! Then they quickly make the most appropriate decision that was bred into their species – chase!

, How To Protect Yourself From Off-Leash Dangerous Dogs That Chase Cyclists

Scary Dogs Chase Our Bikes

When we’re cycling, there have been plenty of times that really scary big heavy-breathing, fast-running dogs have chased us. My instinct is to dismount, put the bike between me and the dog, and wait for the owner to get them under control.

Hey dog; you are welcome to bite my bike! Eat carbon, you snarling beast! Just don’t bite me.

My riding partner prefers to simply squirt water at them or wear them out; out-run the dogs. Unfortunately, I’m not confident in my ability to do that. I have these visions of the dog grabbing my foot, dragging me off the bike, and biting me. I had read “How to Deal With Aggressive Dogs on Your Ride,” and was worried I’d be mauled.

In actuality, what happens when they chase me is I try to get away from them, which has resulted in me veering directly into oncoming traffic; potentially an even worse situation than fending off an angry dog.

If you’re not going to get one, then go ahead and read this: “You Are Riding Your Bike and Chased/Injured by a Dog – What to Do?” from the Legal Examiner. Or, just go ahead and order a Dazer Or two.

, How To Protect Yourself From Off-Leash Dangerous Dogs That Chase Cyclists

Why We Tried It

We like to cycle, and we like to walk our dogs. I’m not great at outrunning much of anything, and I would probably accidentally spray myself with pepper spray every time I put my bike away. I read in Bicycling Magazine how tricky it actually is to dispense the spray. We needed a dependable dog deterrent.

My riding partner ordered one of these Dazer II devices, and we started using it while walking our own dogs, then on cycling rides. We’ve been using it almost three years now, and have our neighbors’ dogs trained not only to cease and desist chasing us, but also to stop barking at us!

I love this item SO much that it inspired me to email the company to thank the owner, and he and I had some good conversations about cycling and dogs. When we are cycling, and a really bad dog is chasing me – I’m really scared. I think you should have one of these, or two.

, How To Protect Yourself From Off-Leash Dangerous Dogs That Chase Cyclists

Scary Dogs Chase Us On Dog Walks

Our county animal control is under-staffed and over-worked, so even calling repeatedly about nuisance animals takes time. It might take a week or two to see any results from a call, and we have more rides to finish before they might be able to contact the owners. We needed help now.

Comments on Amazon

The great thing about ordering items from Amazon is you get to read all those comments and reviews. We never even did that – we just ordered it! My friend said it worked, so we got one.

Apparently, it’s really intended for discouraging barking, and there are plenty of “stopping barking dogs” success stories on the Amazon customer reviews.

Reading the reviews now on Amazon, I see that it works on small dogs, large dogs, dogs barking through fences, and even baboons!  It looks like most of the buyers simply wanted a way to quiet their neighbors’ yappers.

, How To Protect Yourself From Off-Leash Dangerous Dogs That Chase Cyclists

It’s So Good, We Bought Two!

We started with one Dazer II, which we kept by the dog leashes so we would not forget it. It worked so well on dog walks with aggressive dogs approaching our dogs, that we started taking it with us on bike rides.

Due to the leashes being in one room, and the bikes in another, we forgot the Dazer one ride, and happened to be chased by three separate dogs and a pair of dogs. Once home, I promptly ordered a second Dazzer so one could be kept with the leashes, and one with the bikes.

Your Responsibility to Report

We still call Animal Control about vicious dogs – we are not the only people on the road cycling or walking or running, so we don’t want anyone else getting hurt by a vicious dog.

If we failed to report a dangerous dog, and then it attacked someone else, we would feel awful.

, How To Protect Yourself From Off-Leash Dangerous Dogs That Chase Cyclists

Sneaky Way to Eliminate Bad Dogs

On a side note about vicious dogs – we live in a small town, and I know several of the ladies who work at the local insurance companies.

Whenever we have a really bad incident; we look up the homeowner’s name, since home insurance is listed by name, not address, and we get the address for Animal Control. After making the call to AC, I then rip off a fast email to all the “insurance ladies.”

Most homeowner’s insurance will not tolerate a vicious dog on the property, and we’ve found that many of those dogs belong to renters, so a landlord is even more motivated to deal with the situation promptly.

, How To Protect Yourself From Off-Leash Dangerous Dogs That Chase Cyclists

Tell Your Friends! It Works!

Get a Dazzer. Read the directions. Try it out. It works. And, I get the satisfaction that you can ride, run, walk with more confidence that you are not going to be eaten alive by a big scary snarling dog.

About Those Leashes

Just in case you’re wondering about the leashes in the photos above; those were about the fifth type of leash we have tried. They are retractable neon leashes by Flexi, and they come in different widths for different dogs.

We tried several brands that had a bit of line before the tape, and the lines kept breaking and getting tangled. Then we tried several types of tape leashes, and they kinked and would not retract after a couple months.

We’ve had these for nearly a year now, and are really loving them. When cars approach, we turn the body of the leash sideways, and it makes a huge reflective spot.

Another consideration was the mechanism – we have had some give out rather quickly, and one variety was nearly impossible to catch, then smoothly release. After several years of trials, we are just so pleased with these leashes by Flexi.

They come in yellow and in blue, and there’s even a Flexi Black Multi Box that opens from either side to hold treats or bags – one roll included.

And you can even add a Flexi LED Lighting System for white light in front and a rear red light, and can be attached with velcro for right- or left-handed use, and daytime removal.

, How To Protect Yourself From Off-Leash Dangerous Dogs That Chase Cyclists
Adjusting the Dazer Ultrasonic Dog Deterrent that hangs on my handlebars.

We Don’t Go Anywhere Without:

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  • RoadId for $5 off your cycling/running/kayaking/travel id.
  • Dazer Ii Ultrasonic Aggressive Dog Deterrent Repeller Dazzer – keeping dogs at bay while we cycle.
  • Guardline Security Wireless Driveway Alarm – alerts us when someone approaches. Less expensive directly from the company.
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What to Read Next: 7 Items for Dive Boat Survival – The Prepared Diver


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