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Advice required re; dog attack ....

bristolpetebristolpete Posts: 2,255
edited July 2019 in Road general
Strange turn of events yesterday, but was 'attacked' by an errant dog when out on my Tuesday ride. I have what the doctor calls a puncture wound to the left knee and a straight up bite with a puncture on the left calf and a torn sock. I had a tetanus yesterday afternoon and have 7 days worth of strong antibiotics which are pretty strong pills.

In the build up to the event, I decided to have an easy ride as have friends visiting Devon this weekend and wanted to save my legs for a big Dartmoor ride. Heading back into my village, the road was blocked by a guy in a caravan doing a 37 point turn so I took a short cut through a sustrans approved small park with a cycle path. In the park, an errant / very angry collie made a beeline for me on the bike so I got off and stood behind the bike. An old boy sat on a bench and had a pop at me and I said that I was concerned for the welfare of the dog as seemed very angry and another person may have booted it. I own two dogs myself so this was out of the question. The guy then tried to get the dog but it ran to the 'other' owner who I can best describe as very disabled with an electric wheel chair. At this point there was approx. 30 feet between us when the man got the dog on a lead. The lady in the wheel chair apologised and I said "no problem, no harm done". At that moment the dog lurched forward as we passed each other on the path bit my left knee which was seriously painful and then got its jaws around my sock biting down pulling at my leg. Utter pain. Cue me hopping on cleats holding my bike, trying to fend off the pain. Bit of a comedy sketch. FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF******ck. Dog bites hurt - solidarity to the postmen comrade.

Naturally, all quite shocked and they apologised but I think all were shocked to the point silence fell. I 'limped' home 3/4 mile on the bike, rang my Mrs. as I felt very shaken and called the local police station to report it. They noted it but said 999 at the scene would have been a better option.

Anyway, long story short, would anyone thing there is any legal recourse to this ?

First of all I have no idea who they are but I live in a village and the local practice nurse who gave me the tetanus jab advised me that she knows who they are based on my 'guess who description'. This is not a vicar of Dibley type place yes yes yes no - I prefer my private life, but in Devon, fart and everyone knows about it before you do. I could locate them is what I am trying to say.

I have images of the injuries, I think two witnesses and the guys I work 'for' not with say I should pursue a claim as it may pay for a nice winter bike.

But here is the rub, I did not call 999. In the moment I just wanted to get away from its teeth. I realise that the dog may have been protective and the lady in the wheel chair clearly has a life of hardship based on what I saw. As before, I have two dogs, it may be a lifeline but the caveat everyone is levelling at me is what if that was a child and what about my injuries.

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Posts

  • slowmartslowmart Posts: 3,944
    Never sue a man of straw goes the old saying

    Personally I’d move on if your sole aim is damages as it seems everyone is getting more litigious.

    If you’re concerned the dog is dangerous that’s another story altogether.

    I’d locate the owners for a chat, establish they’re views and what they plan to do to stop it happening again - it’s then up to you decide to inform the police . Don’t forget it was a small park so I’ve no idea if children play in the area?
    “Give a man a fish and feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and feed him for a lifetime. Teach a man to cycle and he will realize fishing is stupid and boring”

    Desmond Tutu
  • bristolpetebristolpete Posts: 2,255
    slowmart wrote:
    Never sue a man of straw goes the old saying

    Personally I’d move on if your sole aim is damages as it seems everyone is getting more litigious.

    If you’re concerned the dog is dangerous that’s another story altogether.

    I’d locate the owners for a chat, establish they’re views and what they plan to do to stop it happening again - it’s then up to you decide to inform the police . Don’t forget it was a small park so I’ve no idea if children play in the area?

    Thanks. Very valid. 24 hours later and went to work today and was bombarded with the should have shot it, punched them blah blah blah but I view myself as decent guy and as before clearly having a tougher life than me. But no excuses for the bite and will think about the next step. My mind works in a different way as at no point did I think about a claim til I got to work today. Hopefully be able to ride Saturday, that is more important to me.
  • bristolpetebristolpete Posts: 2,255
    As an aside here are my two. Bella and Buddy who remind me there is more to life than cycling :shock: :mrgreen:

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  • You do need to follow this up. The “what if it was a small child” argument is a valid one. At the very least steps need to be taken to ensure that dog wears a muzzle in public.
  • lesfirthlesfirth Posts: 1,076
    You do need to follow this up. The “what if it was a small child” argument is a valid one. At the very least steps need to be taken to ensure that dog wears a muzzle in public.
    I agree with the above. You should follow it up. I hope the antibiotics work. From experience I know that puncture wounds from dog bites can have complications. It looks like you have two lovely dogs. :)
  • There would be no harm in taking advice from a PI lawyer. There is nothing wrong with seeking reparation for pain and suffering. People who complain about 'litigious culture' should get attacked and bitten before they brush this off.You've every right to expect not to be attacked while going about your private business.

    I have been bitten badly on a bike and reported it to police. The officer expected that the dog would be seized and killed which is not nice for the owner but they should not have had an out of control dangerous dog in a public place. Like the one which attacked the OP. I did not pursue damages because the owner looked poor and was going to lose her dog anyway but I found it hard to feel sorry for someone walking around with a deadly weapon. If she looked well off I would have been straight to a lawyer.

    I find the "what if it is was a small child" argument is not particularly useful. It had already bitten me and I also feel pain and get scarred. It was very traumatic and scary and there was nothing funny about it.

    Hope you are ok.
  • lesfirthlesfirth Posts: 1,076
    cancelled
  • tlw1tlw1 Posts: 18,359
    As an aside here are my two. Bella and Buddy who remind me there is more to life than cycling :shock: :mrgreen:

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    48251354931_c2cffbec68_c.jpg
    Looks like our springer!
  • pilot_petepilot_pete Posts: 1,961
    Take the emotion out of it - be it yours about the attack, or yours about your love of dogs, or theirs about their dog “who wouldn’t hurt a fly” (no doubt in their minds).

    The dog is dangerous and assuming it was more than a very young puppy, it is destined to stay that way. You may not be the first, and almost certainly won’t be the last victim of such a dog. Any dog that displays such behaviour without any provocation cannot be trusted. It needs destroying. As for compensation, well I think you are deserving. Owners need to take responsibility and every time they get away with such events with no consequence they will seemingly never learn and more innocent victims will emerge over time.

    How can I be so forth rite in my views? We had our family pet dog destroyed less than a month ago because he displayed such behaviour to all the members of our family, some friends and their kids too. I think he should have been destroyed earlier but his owner, my wife loved him so much it took his second attack of her in a year to convince her. Very sad all round, but my biggest fear was for him to go out of control and do someone some serious damage. He was not a ‘dangerous’ aggressive breed, he was a cocker spaniel...

    PP
  • First.AspectFirst.Aspect Posts: 4,323
    I tend to take the view that the fault is 99% of the time with the owner, not the dog - the limited exceptions being if the dog is a rescue that's been abused, in which case it is some other owner's fault, or if it has a tumour or something like that.

    So even in the OPs position I'd be very angry with the owners but conscious of the consequences of my next move. I agree with the sentiment that the measured reaction would be to find them and have a word and then see how you feel, rather than go straight to the perhaps more "modern" approach of calling a solicitor.

    The "great vengeance and furious anger" approach won't make you feel any better, I don't think.

    Also, lets be honest here, dogs and bicycles don't mix. Never have, never will. So it might not follow that behaviour towards a fast moving (relatively speaking) horribly noisy aggressive thing (in the mind of Fido) would necessarily correlate to an attack on a child.
  • timothywtimothyw Posts: 2,482
    Also, lets be honest here, dogs and bicycles don't mix. Never have, never will. So it might not follow that behaviour towards a fast moving (relatively speaking) horribly noisy aggressive thing (in the mind of Fido) would necessarily correlate to an attack on a child.
    What if the child is riding a bicycle?

    Needs to be kept muzzled if it can't be controlled.
  • stueysstueys Posts: 1,332
    The dog obviously isn't under control or trained not to be a threat. Action needs to be taken so that one of those things happen. I don't think you can just let it pass, otherwise the status quo remains. Whether that's a follow up chat with the owners or a legal recourse is your call.
  • AlejandrosdogAlejandrosdog Posts: 2,007
    I was attacked by a Rhodesian ridgeback once outside a farm. It was absolutely massive. After I’d torn myself away, seriously injured I tore up a metal road sign limped back down the track and beat it to death.

    The police were called I was the fourth person that dog had bitten the previous was a child. Seems it didn’t like cyclists. The well to do woman that owned the farm lived alone and used it as a guard dog and didn’t think she’d done anything wrong.
  • homers_doublehomers_double Posts: 6,572
    You "beat it to death"?

    Granted you'd been injured but I doubt that was the correct course of action.
    Advocate of disc brakes.
  • kingstongrahamkingstongraham Posts: 11,391
    You "beat it to death"?

    Granted you'd been injured but I doubt that was the correct course of action.

    Indeed, should have done it twice.
  • norvernrobnorvernrob Posts: 1,448
    I tend to take the view that the fault is 99% of the time with the owner, not the dog - the limited exceptions being if the dog is a rescue that's been abused, in which case it is some other owner's fault, or if it has a tumour or something like that.

    So even in the OPs position I'd be very angry with the owners but conscious of the consequences of my next move. I agree with the sentiment that the measured reaction would be to find them and have a word and then see how you feel, rather than go straight to the perhaps more "modern" approach of calling a solicitor.

    The "great vengeance and furious anger" approach won't make you feel any better, I don't think.

    Also, lets be honest here, dogs and bicycles don't mix. Never have, never will. So it might not follow that behaviour towards a fast moving (relatively speaking) horribly noisy aggressive thing (in the mind of Fido) would necessarily correlate to an attack on a child.

    Having spent 22 years as a postman, I can tell you that is utter tosh. Dogs are naturally protective, and I’ve delivered to many lovely families over the years who’s dogs would have attacked me at the first opportunity (they very rarely got the opportunity due to responsible owners).
  • First.AspectFirst.Aspect Posts: 4,323
    norvernrob wrote:
    I tend to take the view that the fault is 99% of the time with the owner, not the dog - the limited exceptions being if the dog is a rescue that's been abused, in which case it is some other owner's fault, or if it has a tumour or something like that.

    So even in the OPs position I'd be very angry with the owners but conscious of the consequences of my next move. I agree with the sentiment that the measured reaction would be to find them and have a word and then see how you feel, rather than go straight to the perhaps more "modern" approach of calling a solicitor.

    The "great vengeance and furious anger" approach won't make you feel any better, I don't think.

    Also, lets be honest here, dogs and bicycles don't mix. Never have, never will. So it might not follow that behaviour towards a fast moving (relatively speaking) horribly noisy aggressive thing (in the mind of Fido) would necessarily correlate to an attack on a child.

    Having spent 22 years as a postman, I can tell you that is utter tosh. Dogs are naturally protective, and I’ve delivered to many lovely families over the years who’s dogs would have attacked me at the first opportunity (they very rarely got the opportunity due to responsible owners).
    with respect, you probably don't know the difference between an alert bark and a precursor to an attack. You are also, by the nature of your job and human nature, going to have strong confirmation bias.
  • First.AspectFirst.Aspect Posts: 4,323
    timothyw wrote:
    Also, lets be honest here, dogs and bicycles don't mix. Never have, never will. So it might not follow that behaviour towards a fast moving (relatively speaking) horribly noisy aggressive thing (in the mind of Fido) would necessarily correlate to an attack on a child.
    What if the child is riding a bicycle?

    Needs to be kept muzzled if it can't be controlled.
    You aren't contradicting me. It needs to be controlled. But dogs can be trained. So we are back to this being the owner's fault.

    Since I rather like animals I still overall like the approach which gives that animal the best chance of not being destroyed as a consequence of being unfortunate enough to have censored owners.
  • AlejandrosdogAlejandrosdog Posts: 2,007
    timothyw wrote:
    Also, lets be honest here, dogs and bicycles don't mix. Never have, never will. So it might not follow that behaviour towards a fast moving (relatively speaking) horribly noisy aggressive thing (in the mind of Fido) would necessarily correlate to an attack on a child.
    What if the child is riding a bicycle?

    Needs to be kept muzzled if it can't be controlled.
    You aren't contradicting me. It needs to be controlled. But dogs can be trained. So we are back to this being the owner's fault.

    Since I rather like animals I still overall like the approach which gives that animal the best chance of not being destroyed as a consequence of being unfortunate enough to have censored owners.

    I like dogs too. Irrespective of the owner some dogs are more predisposed to bite. All dogs should be controlled and if they’re a danger destroyed. Unless of course the only reason you’re exposed to the danger is because you’re present illegally.
  • thistle_(mbnw)thistle_(mbnw) Posts: 3,898
    https://www.gov.uk/control-dog-public

    I would make a complaint to the police about the dog.
    Unless they've had other complaints and are obliged to confiscate the dog then ask for it to be dealt with informally if you feel sorry for the dog/owner. The police would probably prefer this approach as it's less hassle for them and 'having a word' is probably enough to stop it happening again.
  • trek_dantrek_dan Posts: 1,366
    My friend recently had to put his dog to sleep (a dear old recue Greyhound who was on lead and minding his own business) following an attack by a vicious out of control off lead dog. He was injured in the attack too and is currently going through a suit for personal injuries, vet bills and upset. As far as we know the dog has been destroyed. Irresponsible dog owners have to be accountable for the action of their animals. You wouldn't laugh it off if a person attached you in the street. You need to make a complaint to the police and go from there.
  • chris_basschris_bass Posts: 4,913
    trek_dan wrote:
    My friend recently had to put his dog to sleep (a dear old recue Greyhound who was on lead and minding his own business) following an attack by a vicious out of control off lead dog. He was injured in the attack too and is currently going through a suit for personal injuries, vet bills and upset. As far as we know the dog has been destroyed. Irresponsible dog owners have to be accountable for the action of their animals. You wouldn't laugh it off if a person attached you in the street. You need to make a complaint to the police and go from there.

    Sadly by having their animal killed usually
    www.conjunctivitis.com - a site for sore eyes
  • redvisionredvision Posts: 2,615
    This is a difficult one, but the answer is not to have the dog put to sleep unless it has a history of such attacks.

    Were you wearing sunglasses and your helmet? Dogs naturally protect their owners and it's quite possible it didn't recognise you as a human and thought you were a threat.

    The rule of thumb whenever you are in your cycling gear is give any animal a wide birth. Even if you are stationary, sunglasses and helmets can freak out horses, geese will always go for you, and there was a thread on here last week about a buzzard attack.

    The dog clearly wasn't under control but that comes back to the owners. I would try to contact them and suggest they put a muzzle on the dog when out and to keep it on a lead.
    You should also speak with the local vet if you can as they should have seen the dog (if the owners are responsible owners) and will have an understanding of the dogs temperament.

    Hope the cuts heal quick.
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    I was attacked by a Rhodesian ridgeback once outside a farm. It was absolutely massive. After I’d torn myself away, seriously injured I tore up a metal road sign limped back down the track and beat it to death.

    The police were called I was the fourth person that dog had bitten the previous was a child. Seems it didn’t like cyclists. The well to do woman that owned the farm lived alone and used it as a guard dog and didn’t think she’d done anything wrong.

    Beating a dog to death ? Christ. You should be locked up.
  • slowmartslowmart Posts: 3,944
    Plenty of advocacy for enforcing your individual rights but when the owners are vulnerable the impact of a dog being destroyed will be profound.

    It’s disappointing to see adversarial being taken as a
    baseline rather than as a last resort.
    “Give a man a fish and feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and feed him for a lifetime. Teach a man to cycle and he will realize fishing is stupid and boring”

    Desmond Tutu
  • shirley_bassoshirley_basso Posts: 3,227
    fenix wrote:
    I was attacked by a Rhodesian ridgeback once outside a farm. It was absolutely massive. After I’d torn myself away, seriously injured I tore up a metal road sign limped back down the track and beat it to death.

    The police were called I was the fourth person that dog had bitten the previous was a child. Seems it didn’t like cyclists. The well to do woman that owned the farm lived alone and used it as a guard dog and didn’t think she’d done anything wrong.

    Beating a dog to death ? Christ. You should be locked up.

    This story is clearly shyte.
  • AlejandrosdogAlejandrosdog Posts: 2,007
    fenix wrote:
    I was attacked by a Rhodesian ridgeback once outside a farm. It was absolutely massive. After I’d torn myself away, seriously injured I tore up a metal road sign limped back down the track and beat it to death.

    The police were called I was the fourth person that dog had bitten the previous was a child. Seems it didn’t like cyclists. The well to do woman that owned the farm lived alone and used it as a guard dog and didn’t think she’d done anything wrong.

    Beating a dog to death ? Christ. You should be locked up.

    Well it attacking me in a public place. I normally would have sat down with it and asked what it’s grievance was but I didn’t have any biscuits and I sensed it wasn’t in the mood anyway.
  • I was attacked by a Rhodesian ridgeback once outside a farm. It was absolutely massive. After I’d torn myself away, seriously injured I tore up a metal road sign limped back down the track and beat it to death.

    The police were called I was the fourth person that dog had bitten the previous was a child. Seems it didn’t like cyclists. The well to do woman that owned the farm lived alone and used it as a guard dog and didn’t think she’d done anything wrong.

    I was attacked by my neighbours Rhodesian ridgeback once, it was absolutely massive. Rather than beat it to death, I went to my neighbour and put an axe through his head. It wasn't the dogs fault his owner was an censored .
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • redveeredvee Posts: 11,921
    I had an encounter with a golden retriever several years ago that kept running alongside and barking so I stopped and called the owner over who claimed he was only playing and asked her to put the dog on it's lead for 30 seconds so I could get clear but she refused again saying he's playing. I told her if she doesn't sort her dog out I'll have to protect myself and opened the pannier and got my pump out and told her I'll quite happily use it to protect myself if needed. Once she saw I meant business she leashed up her dog and walked off.
    Another dog I used to meet was a white German Shepherd who sed to lunge as I rode past but through a dog owning work colleague who stopped and spoke to the owners said that if I stopped and said hello to the dog he'd calm down greatly and over the following weeks/months the dog's behaviour improved greatly.
    I've added a signature to prove it is still possible.
  • First.AspectFirst.Aspect Posts: 4,323
    slowmart wrote:
    Plenty of advocacy for enforcing your individual rights but when the owners are vulnerable the impact of a dog being destroyed will be profound.

    It’s disappointing to see adversarial being taken as a
    baseline rather than as a last resort.
    Well put.
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