Are TPE river parks unsafe off-peak or do I just smell funny? (dogs)

Twice this month now I’ve been biking along the river paths off-hours and nearly been eaten alive by massive (7-12 animals) packs of feral dogs. The first time was around 9pm in Neihu by the Rainbow Bridge. There were a few people around playing basketball etc but they were pretty far away. The pack was hanging out right in the middle of the trail, dim lighting so I didn’t notice until I was right on top of them. The only thing that saved me was crossing into another pack’s territory who weren’t as hungry or spooked by me.

The 2nd time just happened this morning, around 6am cycling out near Beitou-Guandu. Dogs blocking the trail far up ahead, I saw them chasing down a scooter & tried to turn around. A 2nd pack out bounded out of an adjacent rice patty/empty lot/craphole and chased me until again, I crossed paths with an less hungry dog.

I know it’s a bad idea to flee but hell… easier said than done. I’m pretty sure I nearly got mauled to death both times.

So am I ignorant of some Taipei street-smart that says the parks are iffy when uncrowded, or should I really just stand my ground? Has this been happening to anyone else more than usual lately? I’ve been biking on the river mid day during the weekend since I moved here with no problems, this has only been happening recently & at weirder hours.

There are always dogs and no one seems to want to do anything about it. You can call the city and hope they’ll deal with it… probably after 5 years of daily letter writing, calls, and protests. There are other ways but it’s illegal and gets animal rights people mad. Unfortunately a lot of them thinks the stray dogs have more rights than you do.

Okay first off, you weren’t nearly mauled to death. That doesn’t happen here. Ever.

Worst of the dogs may have nipped you or possibly bitten you if YOU overreacted.

Next time stop your bike. Call to the dogs. Let them know you are there. If they approach stand your ground, but do not act aggressive or look the dogs in the eyes. They will grow bored soon and leave you alone. Next time they will be used to you and will leave you alone even when you ride by.

Don’t act like prey and you won’t be treated like one.

I rode those paths for 6 years and had dogs chase me twice. Both I just turned, let out a short gruff woof, and they ran back. Usually I would just call when I was approaching. That worked 99% of the time.

Whatever you do don’t listen to luthier. The dogs aren’t going anywhere so there is no point indulging in any fantasies. Like it or not, you and I and everyone else have to adjust.

Exactly.

Every so often, the city pound comes and kills 20 or 30 of the river park strays, dumps them in a collective grave… and 3 days later the park is full again. Why? Not because the dogs reproduce that quickly as people dump their unwanted pets even faster than they get killed.

It is a people problem, not a dog problem.

As to how to avoid getting bitten, follow Mucha man’s advice. be the pack leader.

EDIT:
OTOH, you may actually smell funny. remember furriners attract more mosquitoes than locals.

Yes even i, half a foreigner, smell “funny” as one of my ex GF used to say.

I always run. On a bicycle, there is no way that dog is going to keep up with me for an extended period of time.

I have strong opinions on Luthiers’ implied manner of dealing with the dogs.

Smell of Benje will do that everytime.

[quote=“Hokwongwei”]I always run. On a bicycle, there is no way that dog is going to keep up with me for an extended period of time.

I have strong opinions on Luthiers’ implied manner of dealing with the dogs.[/quote]

I actually had a dog chase me on a scooter (I mean, I was on a scooter, not the dog) just the other day. This is only the second time (as far as I can remember) it’s ever happened. It freaked me out slightly because it was so unexpected; normally dogs just ignore me. I just slowed down, looked at him and shouted “no”, and he backed off. I’m pretty sure he didn’t speak English, but when a dog shows a bit too much interest I’ve found they respond to that sharp, falling tone. Exactly the same result on the previous occasion - and in that case, he soon recognised me as a “regular” and showed no interest after that. Just my :2cents:

As someone said back there, make sure they know you’re the boss and you’ll be fine. I quite like seeing the dogs along the Danshui river path. I’ve never seen then chase anybody and they seem perfectly happy lounging on the grass. I suspect what they react to is the smell of someone who’s afraid of dogs.

Also, other dogs move in. Any environment has a certain holding capacity, and it will be filled.

It’s unfortunate that the law thinks dog poisoners retain people rights.

[quote=“finley”]
I actually had a dog chase me on a scooter (I mean, I was on a scooter, not the dog) just the other day. [/quote]

Now, that would have been something! :smiley:

Well since Taiwanese dogs ride on scooters so well, it won’t be long before one is able to drive one . :slight_smile:

I both ride my bike and run on the riverside paths without any hassles (aside from one crash after hitting a dog, but that’s another story). Yes, some packs like to play ‘chase’. If you don’t want the dogs chasing you then, as mucha man suggests, stop. As far as the dogs are concerned this means game over and they will immediately snap out of ‘chase mode’. So, get off (and put the bike between you and the boldest dog if necessary) and slowly walk past until you are away from them, then remount and be on your way. If you know a particular pack likes to play chase then get off your bike before they even think about it.

I have never had a stray dog approach very close when dismounted.