Dog attack - getting my confidence back

Hello all, long time no see image I was attacked while I was running yesterday by a REALLY big dog, great dane sized. The owner was horrible too, she shouted and swore at me and was actually scarier than the dog! I have been feeling really frightened since it happened, and I did not go running yesterday. How can I get my confidence back, and not be so scared? I am even scared of leaving the house in case I see the owner again.


  • Did you report it? Doesn't sound nice image
  • That's a difficult one duck, and you might get conflicting advice.

     What a horrible person - not someone who deserves to stop your running around your own locality.  I think the first question you should get straight in your mind is whether or not it is reasonable and desirable to involve the police.... even if it's just a telephone call to discuss the incident with them.   It sounds like  that person is a danger to the public and other runners, children etc.    And if you're going to be scared of this person/dog at every turn, then this has the potential to eat at you for a long time - and to 'get your confidence back', it might be better to bite the bullet now and get some backing, rather than letting that person unknowingly bully you for the next year or two.  Of course, they may never get identified...   and if they do, perhaps you can choose whether or not to press for charges... but  whatever.... if you involve the authorities, it could be an important step in you feeling like you have control of the situation - which could prove to be important in the medium to long term.    It's still a tough call though.

    Putting that aside, now for the dog thing.   If it broke the skin, then I hope you saw a doctor.  Don't know if the critical time has passed now, but I got bitten by a Doberman 25 years ago when casually jogging to the shops.  Can't remember who recommended I went to A&E, even though I didn't want to (it wasn't a bad bite, but did break the skin..... but I did, and remember having a tetanus jab.

    The psychological thing... well, you just have to put it in perspective.  That's the only time I've been bitten in my 50ish years on this planet. So it is really very rare, and you just have to work it out.  Maybe deliberately run past some dogs that are clearly safely on leads a few times, just to get used to it again!.  I'm not sure there's much else you can do.  You will surely be apprehensive whenever you're running near a big dog for a while...  and I suppose even now, that Doberman comes into my mind in some circumstances - a slight stress response, but not restricting in any way.  All you can do is rationalise it, and get on with your run, and hope that any fear factor is short-lived.

    Good luck with it.


  • Hi. That's horrible. No wonder you are scared now but it won't help hiding in your house because of this. The longer you leave it the worse it will get. Can you go running on a different route where the chances are less that you will see her until you got your confidence back? I would not be defeated by her as I assume you have done nothing to provoke the attack and if she can't/ won't control her dog she is clearly at fault!

    If you see her try to ignore her and if she recognises you and starts an argument just keep running, or if you feel up for it talk to her.

    Hope you will get it sorted soon and can enjoy your running again without worrying of getting attacked.

    Edit: think reporting her is also a good idea as she and her dog are clearly a threat to other ppl and childen. Take a camera phone with you so you can take a pic of her and the dog which would help the police to identify her.
  • Completely agree with Jindalee.

    Step one is to go out. Do it today, even it it's for a short walk and when you run again choose a different route.

    What happened was nasty but you can't let it affect you. You certainly need to report her as the next time it could be a child - it's not like it's a little nippy Jack Russell it's like the hound of the bloody Baskervilles. And that's also something that could make her easy to track down. Not many people can afford to keep a Great Dane!

  • Flob has a good point. "Attacked" can mean many things. Those big dogs are so heavy they can knock you over by jumping at you. Usually the big dogs are not the problem but of course the scummy owners are the ones that need to be put on leads. 

    Once you've had a bad experience, you will always feel a bit tense when you go past a dog but the only way to deal with it is to get out there and expose yourself to it. The more you do the easier it will get. 

    nb-just read that back and I don't mean show the dog your t**tsimage



    Sussex Grinch wrote (see)

    nb-just read that back and I don't mean show the dog your t**tsimage

    Are you kidding? I reckon that might be a really useful tactic!

    But yes - even being jumped at is a bit much when it's a Great Dane. If it was out of control ( which is the point) I think it's probably fair enough to use the word "attacked" even if no physical harm was done. 

  • Hopefully you're not physically hurt, if you are get that sorted first!

    Have you got someone you can run with who is confident with dogs?  All my running partners know to shield me from dogs as I'm a big wuss, it's one reason why I prefer running in a group, safety in numbers!

  • Also when I encounter dogs I slow down to a walk, control my breathing, ignore the dog and use the mantra "walk and ignore" repeating it in my head.  It takes every ounce of my will power and yoga pratice to do this though and if the dog is running at me barking I will call to the owner to control it as I am not very good with dogs.  This usually works.

    When I said run with someone else, choose someone slower than you, survival of the fittest image

  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    Can you elaborate on what you mean by Attack?

    As Flob says, if it actually bit you then the dog could be put down. If it was just barking and looking a bit scary then it's worth reporting but not sure it should be put down.
  • Duck as above moving forward can you get a running buddy. Best thing to get your confidence back is to get out there again but that's easier said than done.

  • DustinDustin ✭✭✭

    agree with whats been said, get out there and don't be put off.
    I'm no dog lover, but give them a wide berth if you can. I've been badly bitten before (multiple stitches) and pawed / nipped countless times. The more you get used to it, the easier it gets.
    As for owners, well the ones with behaved dogs need no comment, those that can't control their dogs and employ the "he's only playing" line need shooting rather than the dogs. You can't argue with someone who says they can control their dog when it has clearly ran off and jumped at someone.
    Have to say last time I came across a lady similar to your own, she used the laughable line that I shouldn't be on the path as it was for pedestrians and dog walkers, not runners. Oh and it was my fault for wearing yellow. You can't argue with these people.

    All that said, its the exception rather than the rule.

  • Well yellow - what did you expect !??!?!

    (scratches head)
  • Yellow - well you were asking for it! image

    I did have a dog run up to me barking once. The owner called him back and explained it was because I was wearing a red running top and the dog associated it with Man Utd. Yes, I did laugh image



  • DuckG - little steps, just get out of the house even for a walk, confidence will come back.   The woman probably couldn't even recognise you now and the chances of meting her again are slim.


  • I say if you ever see her on her own, run up to her barking and snarling and see what she thinks of that! image

  • RicFRicF ✭✭✭
    Sussex Grinch wrote (see)

    Flob has a good point. "Attacked" can mean many things. Those big dogs are so heavy they can knock you over by jumping at you. Usually the big dogs are not the problem but of course the ******* owners are the ones that need to be put on leads. 

    Here's an excellent example from the blog, 'Wansteadbirder' under the heading, 'More about Dogs'.

    After being bothered by this lady's little darlings she saw fit to give him a torrent of abuse. 

    He happens to be one of Britain's best photographers. Handy.





  • Assault and battery, as Arthur Mullard once described it on Celebrity Squares, is the threat of doing something and actually doing something. I had a dog this week who barked at me and lunged at the back of my legs. The bite didn't come but it was a bit scary. I didn't get the batter but I got the assault. If your dog is likely to harass a stranger then it should be on a lead, at least. Trouble is that nobody enforces any of the laws so owners just do as they wish. Time to start selling dog tazers in the running shops!

  • I agree with most of what has been said on here especially what Elizabeth Dix 4 says.

    I have two dogs who are always on a lead around people/other dogs.  The larger of my two dogs is a German Shepherd cross and was a rescue dog.

    Last year I was walking them near to a large bakery when the staff were coming out. There was a man stood right in the middle of the pathway talking on his phone so I reeled them in so neither of their leads were more than 4 inches from my hand.  I diverted my line of walking towards the wall to avoid the man.  A female runner came up behind me without saying anything and tried to get between the dog and the wall! He jumped up and scratched her leg and she started throwing abuse at me saying he had bitten her.  I apologised but said she should slow down and give dogs a wide berth when running.

    When I am out running I do this and if I am running up behind a woman on her own I usually let her know I am not a threat by shouting a greeting or something so that I don't startle her.

    Anyway, having said all that, I do sincerely hope you can feel like you can get out there and enjoy yourself again.  Look at it from a different perspective, even if you do see her again she is unlikely to be able to run fast enough to catch you. Cross the road and ignore her.

  • Thank you. I will try to get myself out tomorrow morning, on a different route.

    I don't think the dog was actually trying to hurt me, it was just jumping up on me and barking, and usually when dogs do that I just think it is a bit of a nuisance. But this was an ENORMOUS Great Dane type dog, with its paws on my shoulders it was taller than me, and nearly pushed me over. I didn't fancy it 'playing' with me on the ground.

    The scariest bit was the owner though - she didn't try to call the dog off or anything, just stood there watching, and when I shouted 'ARGH HELP GET OFF BAD DOG' she called me 'f*cking mental' and swore at me for several minutes, and when I said 'Put your dog on a lead' she said 'F*ck off, my dog could bite you and chase you and kill you'.

    If the owner had said sorry and put her dog straight on a lead, I would leave it. But since she was so nasty, I took a photo of the owner and the dog, I think I will send that to the police, in case anyone else reports it.
  • Stupid owner. As soon as lil dogs put their paws on me when I'm out running their owners are full of apologies.

    But a dog as big as me ? Jeeez.

    She actually said 'F*ck off, my dog could bite you and chase you and kill you' ?

    That sounds very much like a threat to me and I'd definitely be reporting it.

    Must be easy to track down - there aren't that many huge dogs around.
  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    Sounds like it is the owner that is the problem. Report them to the police.
  • So you did nothing to the dog and when you tried to get it off you she called you "mental", swore at you and told you the dog could kill you? 

    Report the psycho bitch - she isn't fit to own a hamster let alone a Great Dane!

    I hate these f*cking people who think that nobody matters but them and that they have a right to be obnoxious. Don't stand for it DG! image 

  • Forget the dog, it sounds like the owner should be put down.

    I was bitten by a dog one evening when out running with my club, a group of us ran past the dog which was on a lead & it just jumped & bit me, lucky me. I just think it was scared & although it never punctured my skin I had a nice bruise the next day. As I ran off the owner shouted "sorry Mate" image I've passed many dogs before & since & am always wary that they could just attack as they're startled so I cross roads or give a wide berth etc

    Don't let it put you off dogs or running Duck & I hope you recover from all of this ok 

  • andy x wrote (see)

    Forget the dog, it sounds like the owner should be put down.


    Agree sounds like the owner's was just a c*ck womble pitty the dog has the hang around with someone like that.

  • Agreed - lets put the owner down and we can adopt the doggy as a forum pet. Maybe he can carry supplies for us on long runs or something ?
  • It's a great dane I bet we could use it to carry some of the smaller forumites on a long run? image

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