Monday, January 18, 2010

Day 10 - Dogs

Our dog story starts off with me on my way to meet Kristin after work. I was riding down third street to the entrance of the Midland Valley Trail. As I was riding, this gentlemen yelled at me from the other side of the road to watch out for the dogs. He thought I was continuing on down third street. I could see the dogs in the distance and they looked none to friendly, but luckily I was turning onto the trail and didn't have to worry about them.

Unfortunately, I did not remember the stern dog warning as we were headed back home. We decided we wanted to stop by the Pearl Arts Gallery and see Celeste Vaught's work in person. We love what she is doing with her Tulsa Brick x Brick series. So instead of turning west at third we turned east.

Soon did we encounter two ravenous dogs that were hungry for legs spinning on the rotisserie. I yelled at them as loud and as mean as I could and they seemed to drop back, but then I looked again, and they were back on Kristin's tail. So I yelled again louder and they dropped back. We escaped unscathed.

Unfortunately, the gallery was closed on Mondays so we had to quickly return from whence we came. At this point of the story is something I am ashamed to tell you. We were talking about a game plan to make it back past these dogs. As we were talking a biker passed us. For some weird reason we watched him go by without warning him of the peril ahead of him.

Even as I write this the guilt is welling up. This poor biker proceeded on by us as if the world were his for the taking. He was plenty shocked by the ravenous dogs as he swerved to and fro and yelled and a car behind him honked as it nearly hit one of the dogs or the biker or both. The dogs did not hurt him, but we are so ashamed that we didn't warn a fellow biker on the road.

We made our escape down a road just east of Youth Services of Tulsa as the dogs were coming back from their last attack. They saw us but were too late to make the kill.

So biker man who we didn't warn, if you are out there, please forgive us for what we have done. We will do better next time.

Lesson learned: Always tell your fellow bikers of dangers that are up ahead.

Lesson learned:
How to deal with dogs:
I have been dealing with stray packs of dogs in my neighborhood for a few years of commuting by bicycle. Here are a few tips I have learned along the way.

1. Don't try to kick them if they are on your heels. They will grab your foot and it is going to be an ugly bike wreck.

2. You can't outride even the smallest of dogs.

3. As soon as you ride past them you are prey running in fear and the chase is on.

4. If they get that look in their eyes like they are seeing a giant hamburger, get off the bike immediately, turn the bike sideways in front of you, and start yelling at them as aggressively as you can. You look pretty huge to a dog when your bike is turned sideways.

5. Carry a can of mace on your bike and you will be bullet proof. I have never had to resort to spraying my mace because they always freak out from the sideways bike and the aggressive confrontation, but it is comforting to know it's there if I need it.


  1. Hi Nate & Kristin - First I just wanted to say that you two rock! Good for you for setting yourselves this challenge, most inspiring. One more category to add to your pole is within the last 5 years. Ugh.

    I'm glad you escaped the dogs! Sorry about Pearl being closed yesterday - they're open from 11-5 Tue-Fri & til 7 on Thursdays. Tell Doug and Janet hi for me if/when you stop by.

  2. That would scare me pretty bad. I haven't run into too many dog problems on the trails I ride.

  3. Thanks for the comment. Our neighborhood had a real bad problem with a pack of strays for a while. I did my research on best ways to defend myself against them and it has really worked well so if you do ever run into any, please take my advice.

  4. I literally laughed out loud at this story. I believe in karma.... but maybe your not telling him was HIS karmic retribution for something bad he did, not something for which you'll pay later :)