Dog Muzzles – The Jogger’s Best Friend
A Dog may be man’s best friends but perhaps not a jogger’s! If you enjoy running then forget traffic, uneven pavements and inadequate street lighting. It is canines which represent the most serious hazards and dog muzzles which are your best friends.
Dog Muzzles and Leads
In truth, it isn’t really the dogs which are the problem, it is the owners. Why would you take your furry friend for a walk without a Dog Muzzle when it has a tendency to snap? There is a frequent visitor to my local nature preserve who gets very excited by joggers. When I am running, it (the dog not the owner) likes to run alongside me but I once made the mistake of putting my hand out and it went to bite me. There is also a smaller dog which acts all cute and friendly and then turns into a snappy monster if you reach towards it.
I also have a serious issue with those extending dog leads. They are a great idea if used properly but properly means not extending the lead when the dog is on one side of the footpath and you are on the other. This creates a major trip hazard which is a potential neck breaker in the dark. I have lost count of the amount of times that I have had to hurdle a dog lead, perform limbo dancing or run into the road.
On the Loose
Perhaps the most dangerous dogs are the ones on the loose in parks. They get very excited and tend not to look where they are going. I often take a run around the stunning Virginia Water but the parkland around the lake is a firm favourite with dog walkers. I have been completely wiped out by dogs on several occasions and there is one cheeky chappie that I now particularly look out for.
Visits to Virginia Water mean that my Dalmatian radar needs to be in full working order. There is an extremely boisterous Dalmatian that I swear must time its visits to coincide with mine. Thankfully it is easy to spot as it has a very white face with one black ear. Unfortunately I only know this pursuant to it having taken me out at the knee caps one morning. It was a tackle that would have graced Twickenham. There was no warning as the animal appeared seemingly from nowhere and charged at me full tilt. One second later I was flat on my face. A couple of weeks later the same dog got me again!
The Trouble with Kids
I should also add that my next accident did involve a dog owner but that it was his child who tried to kill me. The youngster was riding his bike without looking where he was going and suddenly swerved into me. I ended up face planting the footpath (again). The father didn’t see the incident because he was chasing his dog. He thought that I had tripped and mumbled something about the uneven ground. I thought it best not to speak at that juncture in case I said something incredibly rude.
Don’t get me wrong, I love dogs and really enjoy walking my friend’s lovely chap Charlie. I just think that owners should know their animals and think about the people around them. Without a dog muzzle, a lead or taking care with extending leads, the dogs can be a disaster waiting to happen to a jogger. Thus far I have only sustained cuts and bruises but if that Dalmatian has anything to do with it then a hospital trip is inevitable.