First, what I usually do when a dog approaches barking: yell at it, wave arms, aggressive feints, etc.
If it keeps coming, shorten the leashes into one hand and get ready to kick. Try kicking, or apply mace, which ought to be real fun with two barking dogs tugging at leashes in one hand.
Only if it seemed truly bent on tearing flesh would I selecta potentially dog-lethal option.
All dogs I've met when I was walking or running were scared away by hostile behavior from me. The one that came closest to getting his teeth in me ran when I aimed a kick at him--he danced, I missed.
I agree that it is good to take some action to be assertive: shout command to stop /out, raise arms, point, etc. Stand tall and look right at the dog. Warn him. Show some confidence.
Unless it was a big dog approaching, say, over 60 lbs, I don't see pulling out a gun on spec. I would be happy to try to pick up a rock or a stick and fling it at the dog if he got too close. But, if there isno time to do that, I would definitely try to kick it very hard. (BTW, dngreer did a very good job of kicking his attacking dog in the head--without getting bit. That's hard to do.)
If I pull out a gun for an animal, it's to shoot to kill. I don't believe in the absurd idea that drawing a gun will faze a dog because he will be "gun shy." That's silly. If that were the case, all one would have to do is make a gun with your hand and point that
at the pooch. The dog doesn't know what "Stop or I'll shoot you with this .357 magnum!" means. I can see shooting a dog who is big and is attacking--but there is no need to drawuntil it is time to shoot and killthe pooch.
I've been approached by dogs dozens of times while running and biking. Sometimes strays, sometime offleash dogs ("Snickers! Come back! Snickersssssss!). I'm not impressed with the ability of almost all dogs to be able to cause me to be in reasonable fear ofdeath or severe bodily injury. They're just dogs.
Did get bit once, though. Ouch.
But I wasn't in fear of my life. I turned around and yelled at the biter and she ran away like she didn't want no part of me no more. Bitch. I don't carry when I run or bike anyway.
This is a good subject. It stimulates me to announce a new Postulate.
HankT's Postulate of Civilian Self-Defense Against Dogs
It is not a good strategy to try to persuade a dog not to attack or biteyou simply because you have a gun (loaded or unloaded) in your hand and you say "Stop or I'll shoot!" Dogs don't understand English. If he is attacking youand you are reasonably in fear of your life--just shoot the pooch.