Tuesday, June 27, 2017

My Dog Didn't Bite You, That's Just Slobber"

Taken within minutes of the "not bite"
The title is a direct quote from the blonde haired woman in a light blue long-sleeve shirt whose dog bit me tonight. Fortunately the skin on my left thigh was not broken. And yes, I was covered in slobber.

The incident happened while I was riding on the Duluth Traverse trail in Piedmont (a multi-purpose trail, purpose built by COGGS and the City of Duluth primarily for mountain biking) when I saw a woman running down the trail at me with her unleashed dog. I pulled over to let them pass and she stated "Don't worry, (s)he will run right by". Her large, tan colored dog of indeterminate breed  grabbed at my leg as it passed by. This was immediately painful, and I let the woman know her dog had bit** me. She continued down the trail, denying it and only came back when I continued to yell at her that it did indeed bite me and that she should muzzle it. She took a brief look at my leg (again no broken skin but with tooth marks appearing), stated it was just slobber, and went on her way. At this point I was pretty mad and continued to tell her to muzzle her dog as it HAD indeed bitten me.

I stopped and took photos. Later when joined by a friend she could quite easily see that under the red marks left by the dogs teeth bruises were forming (I don't bruise easily). I took photos of these developing bruises as well.

Taken about 1.5 hrs after the incident

What made me the most angry was the woman denying the reality of the dog bite. A proper response would have been "I am so sorry my dog bit you. I am glad the skin wasn't broken. From now on I will keep her/him under better control."

I hold dog owners 100% responsible for their dogs behavior. This is not the first time I, or one of my companions (human or canine) has been assaulted by someone's dog. Sometimes with malicious intent, often in exuberance.  Any dog has the potential to bite, whether with intention to harm or just being playful (after all dogs "play" by grabbing with their mouths - just as they fight by grabbing(biting) with their mouths).

**I am a former dog owner (most recent pet, a 95 lb husky mutt) and spent many years working in sled dog kennels and running teams of dogs. I know my way around canines and am not afraid of them, so this was not a case of hysterics on my part because her dog slobbered on me.


Adam Schwartz-Lowe said...

That stinks. I fully agree with your assessment. People tell you 'my dog is friendly', but you don't know them nor their dog. I find so many of the off-leash people act absolutely entitled and unapologetic. It's like no one cares that the entire city of Duluth has a leash law, which includes Hartley, Bagley, Chester, you name it. Ugh. I'm sorry you got bit, grr.

wildknits said...

Appreciate the sentiment Adam. The attitude, as I said, was what really made me angry. The bite... well, that was no fun. Fortunately it wasn't worse, and today is only mildly tender when palpated.

Dale Nesbitt said...

I can sympathize. I consider the most dangerous dog a "he's friendly" dog. That's usually a red flag that the owner is relying on negligence and wishful thinking instead of taking responsibility.

wildknits said...

Sadly Dale I would have to agree. I feel better when the owner at least makes the attempt to control their dog (reel them in if on leash; call them back if off).