Body language with strange dogs.

spider

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A question for dog owners. When walking in the countryside what is the best way to approach and pass barking dogs?
Last weekend my OH and I were out walking when we met two loose dogs with the owner someway behind on her phone. They rushed at us barking. One was a black lab type which looked friendly. The other looked rather like a fox hound and the hair on it's back was raised making me think it was not so friendly! The woman called once which the dogs took no notice of and continued her phone call. My OH said "come on" and strode forward, but I hesitated and the hound dog rushed at me and grabbed my coat. If I hadn't jumped to one side I think I would have been bitten. I then rushed after OH and the dogs didn't follow. Owner mouthed sorry but still did not take her attention away from her phone.

I am a bit of a wimp, not liking to handle horses other than my own and although brought up with dogs have no recent experience. Please advise me on best body language if I meet a similar situation again.
 

Clodagh

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Shout at the owner! Did you not say anything to her!? I'd have given her some serious verbal (and then the dog would probably really have bitten me). How very scary for you.
I would keep walking steadily forward and avoid eye contact. Talk in a normal and calm voice. If it is getting worse stand still and wait for owner to do somethnig.
 

spider

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Thanks for advice. At the time I just hurried past worried that the dogs would come after us but I really wish I'd said something afterwards! My OH didn't realise that it had tried to bite me or I'm sure he would have said something too!
 

Dry Rot

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Stand quite still, would be my advice! Difficult to do with composure, I agree, but in dog language that means neutral.

But it doesn't do any harm to carry a stick if you feel you need to.
 

ace33

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Stand quite still, would be my advice! Difficult to do with composure, I agree, but in dog language that means neutral.

But it doesn't do any harm to carry a stick if you feel you need to.
This. If you don't fancy a stick an umbrella is a good alternative, with the benefit of becoming a shield if needed.
 

planete

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Stand still, do not fix your eyes on the dog which could be inerpreted as a challenge. You can try saying a very firm "Sit!" as the dog gets close. You would be surprised but it can work!
 

Goldenstar

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Stand still look down present your side towards the dog so you look small.
Don't shout as a protective dog may be angered by that .
But say in a calm voice control your dog or something like that .
Never run from a dog it's likely to trigger them to chase .
Owners like that make me so cross .
 

spider

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Defo dont move quickly - unless its to grab the owners phone and launch it into a hedge. Some people do not have any sense at all!

That made me laugh! Thank you all for the good advice. I do have some walking poles that I keep for hillier countryside but I think I will take one with me now.
 

D66

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When someone's collie ran at me and jumped/flew at me I lifted my knee and flipped it over. Very satisfying. The owner thanked me when she arrived a few min later. Too many people pet and fuss strange dogs.
 

honetpot

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What ever you do, don't flap your hands, keep them to your body. I always speak to strange dogs, the chances are they are more frightened than you, and ask them to sit in a firm low voice.
High pitched voices, tend to them into a frenzy as most people use them when playing with dogs.
 

Luci07

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How scary for you. My middle Stafford girl is a wotsit for trying to make friends with everyone we meet and I have spent a long time teaching her to "leave" people alone. Was the hardest thing to get through to her before she could safely hack out with me but I do appreciate that not everyone will appreciate a giddy red Stafford begging for attention.
 
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