Hiking etiquette with dogs

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What's your opinion of off-leash dogs while hiking?

Fine with me. I love dogs!
16
12%
Doesn't matter to me if the dog doesn't bother me or others.
38
29%
Only small dogs that aren't/don't appear threatening.
3
2%
Its OK on low-use trails.
27
21%
Its OK but I will brandish my firearm if I feel threatened.
7
5%
It depends on if the owner picks up the poop or not.
12
9%
Never. There's a law requiring leashes for a reason.
28
21%
 
Total votes: 131

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chumley
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Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by chumley » Mar 24 2009 10:36 am

There was a recent thread about rabid foxes and the threat to unleashed pets which got me to thinking about hiking with my dog. I have a yellow lab, who is by nature, a people-loving dog. His greatest threat to anybody is the ability to possibly lick you to the point of illness due to his bad breath. He's getting old and has always been a little bit lazy, so chasing rabbits, squirrels, skunks, and porcupines only lasts for a few yards before he comes back to me. He is always fascinated (but scared) of larger animals such as elk or cattle.

As a result, I frequently hike with him off-leash. This allows him to stop and sniff things while I continue my pace uninterrupted. I am cognizant of other people however and realize that not everybody loves dogs. If I encounter others, I always try to either put him on his leash or at least give him a "sit" command while people pass. I will always restrain him when we encounter other dogs (especially off-leash) until I've had a chance to talk to the owner and determine the demeanor of the dog.

I love to go somewhere that there's nobody else around for miles and miles ... but its nice to share that solitude with my dog. Often it is impractical to have him restrained, especially on trails that involve climbing or scrambling over obstacles.

So, what do you all think of dogs on the trail? I think part of my responsibility as a dog-owner is to try to understand the feelings of others, and while I have some ideas, it can't hurt to get more input.
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chumley
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by chumley » Nov 14 2012 11:09 am

Interesting program in Boulder, Colorado that allows dogs off-leash on certain trails as long as the owner has the dog under "voice- and sight- control".

Dogs must wear a green tag to indicate the owner knows the rules, and the tag costs $50/yr.

There are fines for no tag, and for dogs who are not actually under control despite the tag.

Opponents argue that there are no such penalties for people on the trails who misbehave, only for dogs. "It's the only user group that chases wildlife" is the reverse argument.

Read more about it here: http://www.dailycamera.com/news/boulder ... open-space
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outdoor_lover
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by outdoor_lover » Nov 14 2012 11:52 am

@chumley
They are behind the times....Phoenix has had an Ordinance for several years...

Taken from Phoenix Municipal Code 8-14
The Dog is not At-Large if:

5. The dog is in a city park where dogs or off-leash dogs have been permitted and all of the following apply:

a. The dog is demonstrably under control of the person training the dog.

b. The dog is at the time actively participating in training.

c. The dog has a dog sport performance title certificate that is from a nationally recognized dog sport organization, or a canine good citizen title from the American Kennel Club or the American Mixed Breed Obedience Registration, that is in the possession of the person training the dog and that is produced for inspection immediately upon the request of a Peace Officer, Enforcement Agent or Park Ranger.

d. For purposes of this Paragraph 5:

i. Demonstrably under control means that the person training the dog has a leash for the dog in the person’s possession, that the dog is within sight and voice range of such person and that the dog does not, without regard to circumstances or distractions:

(aa) Charge, chase, or otherwise display aggression toward any person or behave toward any person in a manner that a reasonable person would find harassing or disturbing;

(bb) Charge, chase, or otherwise display aggression toward any animal;

(cc) Chase, harass, or disturb wildlife; or

(dd) Fail to return by a direct route to and stay with the person training the dog promptly upon command by such person.

A dog is not demonstrably under control unless the person training the dog exercises sufficient auditory or visual commands or cues at all times to keep the dog within the requirements of this definition, and such person has all other dogs in the park that are within the person’s custody or control restrained as provided in Subsection D, Paragraph 1 of this Section or actually confined within a suitable enclosure.

ii. Training means educating and instructing a dog that is being trained for any nationally recognized dog sport, including, but not limited to, conformation, obedience, rally obedience, free style obedience, agility, hunting or field trials, tracking, herding, service animal training, flyball, scent hurdling, lure coursing, or earthdog, but specifically excluding protection or security work.
Due to personal and professional circumstances, I cannot participate in the above Survey.... :D
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Alston_Neal
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by Alston_Neal » Nov 14 2012 1:56 pm

Outdoor Lover wrote: Taken from Phoenix Municipal Code 8-14
The Alston is not At-Large if:

5. The Alston is in a city park where Alstons or off-leash Alstons have been permitted and all of the following apply:

a. The Alston is demonstrably under control of the person training the Alston.

b. The Alston is at the time actively participating in training.

c. The Alston has a Alston sport performance title certificate that is from a nationally recognized Alston sport organization, or a canine good citizen title from the American Kennel Club or the American Mixed Breed Obedience Registration, that is in the possession of the person training the Alston and that is produced for inspection immediately upon the request of a Peace Officer, Enforcement Agent or Park Ranger.

d. For purposes of this Paragraph 5:

i. Demonstrably under control means that the person training the Alston has a leash for the Alston in the person’s possession, that the Alston is within sight and voice range of such person and that the Alston does not, without regard to circumstances or distractions:

(aa) Charge, chase, or otherwise display aggression toward any person or behave toward any person in a manner that a reasonable person would find harassing or disturbing;

(bb) Charge, chase, or otherwise display aggression toward any animal;

(cc) Chase, harass, or disturb wildlife; or

(dd) Fail to return by a direct route to and stay with the person training the dog promptly upon command by such person.

A Alston is not demonstrably under control unless the person training the Alston exercises sufficient auditory or visual commands or cues at all times to keep the Alston within the requirements of this definition, and such person has all other Alstons in the park that are within the person’s custody or control restrained as provided in Subsection D, Paragraph 1 of this Section or actually confined within a suitable enclosure.

ii. Training means educating and instructing a Alston that is being trained for any nationally recognized Alston sport, including, but not limited to, conformation, obedience, rally obedience, free style obedience, agility, hunting or field trials, tracking, herding, service animal training, flyball, scent hurdling, lure coursing, or earthAlston, but specifically excluding protection or security work.
I really question your source on this code Miss Outdoor Lover.. :o
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outdoor_lover
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by outdoor_lover » Nov 14 2012 2:27 pm

@Alston Neal
Alstons are never permitted off-leash!!! They're worse than Feral Cats!!! :o Way too dangerous for the public for Alstons to be running At Large. Hiking At-Large is bad enough.... :sl:
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, totally worn out & proclaiming, "Wow What a Ride!"

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Hippy
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by Hippy » Nov 14 2012 5:41 pm

How did I know miss Outdoor_Lover would get in on this...no working off the clock ma'am!

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PLC92084
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by PLC92084 » Nov 14 2012 6:08 pm

@Alston Neal
Isn't all this predicated on trainability!?

Woof!

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outdoor_lover
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by outdoor_lover » Nov 14 2012 6:24 pm

@PLC92084
:D There isn't a Dog out there that can't be "trained" to a some extent...The question lies is, to what extent and level can it be trained??? That's up to the Dog Owner and circumstances surrounding the Dog. With that being said, I firmly believe from both personal and professional experience, that there is not a Dog out there that won't "break training" given the right environment and circumstances....Many, many Dog Owners find this out the hard way.... :(
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, totally worn out & proclaiming, "Wow What a Ride!"

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rwstorm
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by rwstorm » Nov 14 2012 6:27 pm

@Outdoor Lover
and this applies to people as well...
Onward into oblivion!

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PLC92084
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by PLC92084 » Nov 14 2012 7:37 pm

@Outdoor Lover
I was referring to Alston... ;)

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PatrickL
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by PatrickL » Nov 14 2012 7:39 pm

I have yet to have any major issues with unleashed pets. At the same time, I've never understood why people can't just leash 'em up.

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chumley
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by chumley » Nov 14 2012 10:37 pm

I've always thought that "dog training" is much more about training the owner than training the dog.
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outdoor_lover
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by outdoor_lover » Nov 14 2012 10:39 pm

@chumley
Mostly, but don't tell the Dogs that.... :sl:
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, totally worn out & proclaiming, "Wow What a Ride!"

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Jim_H
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by Jim_H » Nov 15 2012 11:23 am

You know, I really miss my neighbor's dogs in Kayenta, Oso and Toby. Maybe it was because I never made real human friends out there, but those guys were about the only thing that made the place livable for the last year. None of the local (within 100 miles) hikes did that. When I first moved there, the two former indoor dogs were totally outdoor-ized, but wanted in for warmth, comfort, shelter during thunderstorms, and attention and to be near a human who gave them affection. I took them on a few hikes, and a number of bike rides. Eventually, I got them to the point, through training, where I could direct them to some extent. Either by whistling to get them to come near, pointing to get them to heal near the bike when a truck was coming by, and they would no longer (95% of the time) enter the house without being invited. They went from running in if the door was open, to standing in the doorway and waiting to be invited. Now, getting them out was a different story, and they were undisciplined when terrified by thunderstorms and fire works (the people across from me in one of the few occupied houses like to set them off a lot between 9 PM and 3 AM from June up until mid-September when it got cold). I felt bad about leaving them as their owner ( who was actually a good owner as he didn't miss treat them and did feed them) seemed to have lost nearly all interest in them since he married, got a cat and toy dog, and didn't place with them much outside, but they really were not mine and I'm sure they will be OK, if not a little attention starved.
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by outdoor_lover » Nov 15 2012 11:52 am

Maybe the Owner would have given them to you. You should ask, you could still go get them if you wanted and he allowed it.... :D I don't think I can ever live without a Dog again....Go ahead Jim, give it a shot! Go "rescue" them and give them the love they deserve.... :D You need more Hiking Partners down there anyway.... :lol:
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, totally worn out & proclaiming, "Wow What a Ride!"

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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by Jim_H » Nov 15 2012 8:41 pm

I think he offered to them to me, but I thought he was joking. My guess is that he would let me take them, since I think he knows I love them and they seem to be especially fond of me. Trouble was, I moved initially to an apartment, and then today I went to a house. I don't really want to drive 18 hours to get them, and I don't know this place would be good for them. On the one hand I would take them out a lot, on the other, they are open range dogs. They jump walls and fences, but I wouldn't want to leave them indoors while I'm at work for close to 13 hours.
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by outdoor_lover » Nov 15 2012 8:46 pm

@Jim_H
Hmmm, tough call....
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paulhubbard
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by paulhubbard » May 06 2013 12:37 pm

Over the weekend we started a hike and quickly realized we'd forgotten the GPS. My fiancee' went to the truck to retrieve it, but didn't return. When I went back to check on her I discovered she had reached down to pet a "friendly" dog (on a leash), only to get a nasty bite to the hand when she pulled away AFTER petting this friendly dog :o . Required stitches, and a follow up with a hand specialist to ensure no nerve damage.

Just a reminder to never assume every dog you encounter on a trail with people is going to be as friendly as your own! Especially Pit Bulls (yes, this one was a Pit Bull).
Good judgement comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgement.

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outdoor_lover
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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by outdoor_lover » May 06 2013 12:42 pm

That's a real bummer Paul. Glad to hear Kat's ok. Hopefully the owner's picking up the medical tab for you. Did you get the Owner's info??? I wonder if that dog has a prior history...Even if you didn't report it, you may be hearing from Animal Control in the next few days...The Medical Community has to report it, by law....
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, totally worn out & proclaiming, "Wow What a Ride!"

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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by paulhubbard » May 06 2013 1:31 pm

Thanks Pam, Kat's doing okay. It occurred near Ski Valley on Mnt Lemmon, and the sheriff's dept was there and filed a report. The owner really tried to play it down at first, but then admitted the dog had "growled and snapped" at people a couple of times. We did get their info.

I wasn't there when it happened, which is probably for the best since there may have been a dead dog (or injured dog owner) at the scene...
Good judgement comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgement.

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Re: Hiking etiquette with dogs

Post by outdoor_lover » May 06 2013 2:09 pm

@paulhubbard
Unfortunately, it's not even the Dog's fault...But he'll get all the blame. Apparently he's exhibited problems in the past and the Owner is in denial and won't address the problem, find out what's causing it and help the dog out. With the past behavior, the Owner should have never let Kat approach the Dog unless he was positive that the problem had been addressed and solved....Kat and the Dog are paying for a stupid owner's inactions.....Sorry to hear this happened Paul. Give Kat my love.... ;) She can visit with my Dogs anytime she wants, they'll just lick her to death and try to sit on her lap.... :D
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, totally worn out & proclaiming, "Wow What a Ride!"

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