Last week, my long run was a bit longer than expected. With my bad vision, I didn't realize until after a few seconds that I had been making direct eye contact with a stray dog across the street from me.
I was hoping that'd be the end of it. After a little while, I saw a shadow coming from behind me, so I moved to the side thinking it was another runner. But then, I felt something pawing at my heels and realized the dog was following me.
I had no idea what to do, so I just kept looking straight ahead and running. After a little bit, the dog was whining next to me and then he jumped up at me. I yelled at him and he stopped, but he kept pawing at my heels every now and then.
It wasn't the kindest thought, but when I saw a cyclist heading toward us in the opposite directions, I was hoping the dog was follow him. He didn't. After a half a mile, I came up with a plan.
There was a fire station a little out of my way. I figured I could go there and ask them if they knew if animal control could be called on the weekend (or at least keep the dog occupied for 10 minutes while I ran away).
The dog was still with me for a mile, so I went to the fire station. The dog was gone by then, but I still stopped by the station telling the firefighters that the dog was following me. As I was about to leave, the dog was nice enough to be waiting across the street for me, so I waved him over. He kindly complied and the firefighters kept him to see if animal control was available.
Stray dogs have always been a running fear of mine. Once, I ran into an area where there were dogs, who were bordering on aggressive, but there was distance between us and I ran in the other direction. I'm not really sure what to do. In this case, it was an open area without houses or stores. I didn't see a stick or rock if I needed it. This week, I made sure to pack my pepper spray with me. But any advice on dealing with stray dogs would be greatly appreciated. My first choice of course is avoiding them.
Former high school water girl (really) finally running.