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Hello,
As I've mentioned in other posts, I am comfortable carrying a concealed HiPower but have for convenience sake settled for a S&W 442 for the day to day. I don't normally consider myself risk-promiscuous...
But, as most of you folks might accept, risk is just a matter of odds...
Today, I'm walking on the beach with a lady friend. Not many people out with the wind chill. We encountered a woman (no lady) walking ahead of us with two illegally unleashed dogs - one I could only describe as a mastiff (beautiful brute, if I must say) and the other seemingly a Doberman mix, lean and huge.
The "Doberman" frequently bounded towards us menacingly, presumably to guard her owner who was nearly a 100 yard ahead. My friend and I put on a backing bell to give the group some space, but the owner would just slow down. Fighting the urge to just turn around, we continued and finally that dog ran up to us, ears back, nostrils flared, and clearly signalling an imminent attack if we proceeded forward. We stopped, and despite the feeble entreaties of the owner, it took a two minute standoff before the dog grudgingly returned.
I had that 442 unlimbered (and, oh, that BHP would have been better). We didn't know the potential outcome, but damned if we were going to retreat from that kind of crap. But, I also had a case of the dumbass. Normally, I carry a cell phone but not today since it was "just a Sunday stroll." I'd responsibly have guided the police in and seen the owner in court. I screwed that up.
So, here I am risk-adverse, and encountering a potentially fatal event on a quiet Sunday. Your comments welcome.
 

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Hello bowave,

Well, here's my story that documents an incident where I did get bitten and wasn't armed:

http://handgunsandammo.proboards36.com/index.cgi?board=lounge&action=display&thread=1139913498

Now, I carry a S&W 642-2 loaded with Gold Dot 135 grain hollowpoints in the relatively "peaceful orbits" of my travel.

While there are some times, I'd wished to have my SIG, BHP or 1911 Champion on my belt, the diminutive J-frame still packs quite a wallop for its size and I am very confident of the Gold Dot Round's downrange terminal performance.

I must say that you did well because you were armed. When I was bitten, I wasn't.

Chris
 

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Mr. Bowwave,

My basic reaction is two-fold sir. Neither your lady friend nor you ended up getting hurt, which it truly the most important point. If I were a betting man (which I am not, lol) I suspect you will have your cell phone with you from now on, no matter where you are.

It also appears you have already analyzed your situation very objectively, so no real need to beat yourself over the head in my opinion. Life is a learning experience, and you simply learned a bit more today. Things still turned out well, and that is really the most important point.

Thanks for sharing your experience with us. I suspect it will help other members rethink things a bit. As a LEO who has been bitten more than a couple of times over the years, personally I would have preferred a 14" 870 with slugs. But that is a bit hard to conceal on a quiet stroll on the beach too (grinning).

I think the real lesson of your situation is the reminder than nothing is truly ever "routine". Again sir, thanks for the reminder (tips my hat).

twoguns
 

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Mr. Chris,

I love dogs as well, and all animals really. Probably my favorite dog is a black lab. I went on a domestic call to a location even the post office had stopped delivering mail to as every carrier had been bitten by the owner's black lab. As we were starting into her kitchen door to discuss her husband beating her that evening, she held the door for another officer, then started in behind him, leaving me to bring up the rear.

Her lab came out of his dog house to which he was chained, but was still able to take a chunk out of the back of my leg. She had also turned the outside light off on her way through the doorway, so there I am weapon drawn pointing where I hope the dog's head and not my bleeding flesh already was. Knowing Mr. Murphy as well as I do, I elected not to fire, lol.

I did tell her if her dog even looked like it ever wanted to bite me again, he was dead, end of discussion. I tried to convince her to swear out a warrant against her husband (back in the old days when LEOs in my state could not arrest unless we had personally witnessed the assault). Given her appearance I knew she had been beaten, but I could do nothing unless she swore out the warrant first. She declined, which unfortunately was her standard decision.

Short version - we were called back to her house by neighbors the next night saying it sounded like someone was being killed. I was the first officer on the scene, and as the lab came out of the dog house I shot him once in the head with a 140gr Speer JHP .357 magnum. He simply went back down and appeared to be laying partially out of the dog house.

The truly sad part of the story is that once I found her husband 15 minutes later hiding in an area business - I arrested him for homicide. He had indeed killed his wife. I think you know me well enough I don't need to say any further.

The only thing I think I have truly learned in life is that there is no such thing as a "routine" call as a reminder to my fellow LEOs, or a "routine day" for anyone. The potential for some type of problem is always lurking around the corner. In my opinion, folks are wise to be prepared for the unexpected, no matter what the nature of the threat.

twoguns
 

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In Vincennes IN I was walking along taking in the historic sights. I was approached by a dog on the way home. The dog and I ended up in the standoff you describe. I had pulled my Taurus in full view of a Domino's pizza. I didn't have a cell phone in those days, and I was hoping someone inside would see a guy pointing a large automatic at a dog's head. As luck would have it, I was ignored(!!!)

I had an empty Gatorade bottle in my right hand. As I've owned dogs all my life, I got an idea and threw it. Sure 'nuff, the dog's instincts took over and it "fetched," then took off with the bottle.

A few years after I got home I was charged by two poorly trained guard dogs. They were my neighbor's but on my property. They started about 25yds out, but by the time I hauled iron, they had closed to about half that distance. I had time to fire three shots that missed from a large-capacity magazine. I would have done as well with a J frame. Luckily, one of the bullets nipped the ground right in front of one of the dogs and turned them away. I went in and called the police. (As a side note, I found out years later, after my neighbor had cooled off, that I hadn't totally missed; I took a toenail off of one of the dogs with my indexed fire while trying to lead them!)

If I had known in Vincennes what I know now about being on the recieving end of a dog's cavalry charge, I would have shot that dog. I'm a dog lover, but I love my life even more.

My black lab and my sister's German Shepherd/Rotty mix are very protective of me, but they obey. However, if one attacked, or even threatened, another person for no reason, off my land, I would fully expect the person to act in his best interests. I told this to my neighbor right after I shot at his dogs, and he made it clear that he didn't believe me. It also got him to thinking when he found out that I didn't bring the pistol out for a dog shoot-em-up, but it was always on me. That got me to thinking, "Great, now another person knows." All was well though however as my reputation spread a bit, not as a crazy gunslinger, but someone who will do what needs to be done. The neighbor on the other side of the "attack dog" neighbor was having trouble wiht his deer gun, a shot gun, and I heard it. Grabbing my .22lr out of habit, I raced through the woods quickly, because that thing just didn't sound healthy at all. I got there and sure enough there was a big problem he didn't realize. I handed him my .22 with the bolt open, explaining that it's habit to carry it when in the woods (he fully understood) while I took possession of his shotgun. It had a live round in the chamber which wouldn't eject. The chamber wouldn't open. I pressed a certain way on the bolt and she opened right up, ejecting the slug. I told the neighbor that the gun wasn't safe to shoot and that he really needed to get it to a gunsmith as the bolt wasn't riding right. I don't know that he did, but I would assume so.

My point is that, depending on where you live, putting lead in the dog's head may have not been all bad. The dog threatened you, and you and be sure the dog has threatened others in the past and will do so again in the future. I'm not being critical of your actions sir, but rather pointing out that sometimes the most unexpected positive reactions come from, perhaps not a negative action, but simply standing up for what is right. In my view, you would not have been any more responsible for the death of the dog than the owner, who was breaking leash laws (and with dogs she likely knew were tempermental, yet!) would have been.

For what it's worth,

Josh <><
 

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TwoGuns---

I'm very sorry you had to kill the dog, as I'm sure you are.

My ex had a great Rottie mix, who was a sugarlump with people she knew, and death on people she didn't. It took us two months to get phone service, out in the sticks, because the Qwest guys were terrified she'd burst through the windows or the doors at them. (Okay, she weighed in about a hundred and ten.) Plainly put, it's not the dog's fault, or yours. She was doing her job, and you were doing yours. Not much comfort.

God bless. As an ex-cop friend of mine says, If there are no dogs in heaven, then I want to go where they go.

David
 

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Mr. David,

Thank you sir, you are correct. Shooting the dog was not the highlight of my night for sure. Just something that had to be done. Even the rescue squad and fire department refused to respond to the residence without a police presence because of the dog. If either unit arrived ahead of the police, they simply parked on the road and waited for the police to lead the way in.

I blame the owners as they never tried to train the dog, they just let him bite folks. Their response was always well he is chained - what else can we do. So I always felt the dog was doing exactly what he felt was expected of him by the folks that fed him.

But with the mulitple calls for neighbors explaining to the dispatchers the horrendous noises coming from the house, I simply had to get inside to check things out asap. So when he came out on me, I simply did not have a choice.

I am a big cat fan too, owning 3, as an apartment is simply no place for a lab or any large dog to me. So I agree with your buddy - just send me where ever the dogs and cats are - I will be happy.

But I do my best to approach each day being prepared for whatever Mr. Murphy might decide to throw my way that day. He does seem to enjoy giving me a challenge.

twoguns
 
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