Walking Essentials (Part 5) - Mace


On one of our July morning walks, we happened to stop and chat with another dog walker. The topic of discussion was the need for me to keep an eye out for those homes that had less than friendly dogs running loose in their yards, and for the indifference that these homeowners have for the public’s safety. It struck me that our neighborhood had always seemed quite peaceful and safe in the early mornings as we moved along the city sidewalks. But after that morning, my attention became focused on spotting these homes, and making mental notes on how to adjust our route in an effort to avoid a confrontation.

Initially I didn't think that we had to really be on the lookout, until several days later when Chloe and I came into full view of a Pit Bull peering over the top of a home’s block wall. I quickly realized that the only protection between the dog and us was that property barrier. I had also been warned that this particular animal had jumped the wall previous, and had confronted a morning walker. In another instance a similar type of property wall barely kept two large Labradors penned in. They were of a size where they could easily rest their front paws on the wall’s top surface as they continuously barked as Chloe and I walked the foothills trail.  

More recent episodes have turned up two houses where the dog owners apparently believe in keeping their pets in the garage. This would be fine, but they have allowed the dog to watch the sidewalk from a partially opened garage door. In these instances the dogs were a German Shepard and a Mastiff, as both animals made it a point to bark at us while peering underneath the opened door. 

Taking these potentially dangerous locations into account, Chloe and I have again adjusted our walking routes in order to avoid these homes. But as a secondary precaution, I have also added to my walking essentials a pocket size can of mace, which I have read should be able to drop an approaching dog in its tracks, …that is provided you hit the animal in the face with the stinging spray. Hopefully, I will never have to test my reactions, or such a device.  

We haven't met this particular dog, but we've seen similar on our walks.

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