Interesting topic. I hit a dog about 3 weeks ago on the gardiners creek bit. The footy oval area between Warrigal Road and High street. I was travelling towards Warrigal Road and saw the man with 5 dogs all bouncing around and off leads. He was probably 15 metres off the path on the oval.
The golden retriever and the black staffy looking thing came galloping across towards me. (there's a region in the centre of the ovals where the path is immediately next to a wire fence and there's a mound of garden bed on the other side of the path.
Anyway, 2 dogs came galloping towards me and I knew they didn't have their attention on me. I saw and slowed and let them dash across in front of me and under a hole in the fence to the creek. Owner made no attempt to call them off.
Ok. I kept on going and accelerated again. About 60 metres further on, (unbeknownst to me), fat lab had obviously galloped up to other end of mound. I suddenly see fat lab at top of mound launch at warp speed to directly in front of me. I hit the brakes, try to unclip one foot and had my arse off the back of the seat. I knew I was going to hit him and just hoped I wouldn't go face over.
Hit him with a thunk and fell sideways into fence. Dog barely felt it. Owner sees. Calls out. "He's alright love".
Yes the dog was alright. I replied with complete politeness and no sarcasm. "Yes sir, he is alright, but I would be disappointed if I got hurt because of him".
Well, didn't he go off.
Absolutely ballistic and ranting and raving about taking responsibility and riding on shared paths and being considerate of other users.
Yes, I had previously slowed to half my speed to let the first 2 dogs gallop across in front of me. He made no attempt to call any of the 3 back. I didn't see the dog I hit until the last moment as he was obscured by the mound. I didn't rise to the occasion (which is slightly unusual for me in that I normally shoot my mouth off
), but simply asked him to please control his dog in future.
He was still ranting. I asked him again to please control his dogs. I didn't get into a screaming match with him. In the end I just rode away. Seemed easier to do that.
What could I have done here? I consider my own actions weren't antagonistic, and did do what I think was responsible - ie slow to the situation.
Was I an idjit? Was he the idjit? or were we both right in our respective views. I didn't post about this before in case I got canned.
But I guess on this thread, it seems timely to ask.
Any opinions as to what to do should I encounter a similar situation again?