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Took my friends son deer hunting, but it did not end up as expected.

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R.J.Bruce

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Waarp8nt
I have to admit when I composed my above posts that I had not taken GPS transmitting chips into account regarding pets. Not having owned a dog in some time, since before such chips were readily available, and affordable, these chips are not in the forefront of my thoughts.

But, you make several valid points in your post. It's just something else to be concerned about if feral dogs are a problem in one's area. I guess if I was being confronted with having to kill feral dogs, then I would invest in a handheld scanner to see if any dog I killed was chipped, and immediately call the authorities. High quality, outdoor-rated, daylight/nighttime, CCTV cameras covering my residence, and any buildings/pens/corrals/paddocks that contained livestock; and that was slaved to a computer system that was NOT connected to the internet would be a good investment if there was the least indication that litigation was imminent.

It's a hell of a world we live in now. Killing a feral dog is not something to be ashamed of. It's just that domesticated pets in this country are held in such high regard, MUCH HIGHER than livestock costing far more than the average pet, that even back in the 1930's, people shot them, and buried them. In order to prevent violence, and homicides.

Now, with the overabundance of whitetail deer in most states east of the Mississippi river, hunters don't get as furious today as they did when there were hardly any deer to be shot. Like I said before, in the 60's dogs running loose in the woods during hunting season were simply shot on the spot. Deer were scarce, bag limits were 1 per hunter per year, hunting seasons were short, compared to today. Rural people had zero tolerance for domesticated dogs that mostly killed for fun, not to eat. Especially, when so many rural folks still fed themselves substantially from wild game back in those days. Chest freezers were common to hold any overabundance that a particular season might bring.

And just as many irresponsible people then, as today, abandoned their pets in THE COUNTRY to fend for themselves.
 

pajeepman

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I guess I never thought of feral dogs being a problem in the states. I guess feral dogs are same as stray dogs. Proably in Philadelphia but I don't think in the suburbs where I live. I was in the hospital for 6 days after a dog attacked me in 2016. I cringe when I hear about people being attacked by dogs. My incident was a circling and a single lunge that resulted in a deep wound on my arm that got infected(I was in the ER literally 5 minutes after it happened).
A single dog can certainly kill an adult, heaven help ya if it is a pack.
 

Ben Meyer

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This deer season, we had an encounter with feral dogs. I had placed a camera where I always do, at my favorite stand site in late July and had only 2 pics of the dogs between then and mid november, so we didn't think anything of it. So opening day evening hunt....my friend and his son are in that stand, im in another about 70 yds away. No luck that night..I walk to them in the dark while they're climbing down and out of nowhere, a dog snarls, barks and charged about 4-5 strides right at me from the woods! I raised my rifle but never saw the dog(s), they must have thought wise of it. I shined a tactical light into the woods(a thicket of cedars) and caught the eye glow once, moving away.

We've hunted that spot for decades, never seen a dog or got a pic of dogs before. We always carry handguns as well ad our deer rifles, but still. Now, I love dogs and will hate to have to shoot them, but if we see them again, we both agree we'll have to put them down. Here's a pic...
20200930_082758.jpg
 

Tb54

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150 grams of Xylitol, a commercially available artificial sweetener, is lethal to a 150 lb canine. Just sayin. 😉. Don’t seem to bother other meat eaters though.
 
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hanshi

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Down in my native Georgia where I lived for 62 years prior to moving, feral dog packs were a serious problem. We lived in a rural county and on a dirt road 2 miles from the nearest paved road. There is a type of individual who has no compunction about dumping their dogs instead of than finding another home for them. Where we lived dumping unwanted dogs was a constant problem. Most of the time these poor creatures starved to death but the ones that lived did join packs. We saw many sick and dead ones in our area and it was heartbreaking. We did rescue three and kept two of them even though we already had three. Ours were house pets but they had a large fenced in yard as well. Plus we took them for walks, unleashed, along the miles of long paths - my basset, Micky, was my partner in my daily running. The ones we rescued (all large breed dogs) were at death's door; starving and only skin and bones. They had bloody paws and could barely stand up.

On more than just a couple of occasions, while hunting and even while just walking not far from our house, I was threatened by feral packs that congregated facing me with teeth bared, savagely growling. I always carefully backed away (even though armed) vacating the immediate area. One does not run as this can stimulate them to attack.

In our same county there were a retired, middle aged couple. It was the woman's practice to go for walks in the afternoon. One afternoon as sunset approached her husband became worried due to her being gone much longer than normal. He got in the car and went to look for her. He found her dead and badly mauled on the side of the road. He jumped from the car and was immediately set upon by the pack. It was the next morning when they were discovered by someone driving by. The pack stayed in a very old collapsed cottage on a man's farm field with his knowledge, and without him taking any measures to have them removed. The sheriff and all the deputies gathered there and managed to kill every one of them. I can't recall what the charge was, but the man was charged with some infraction or other for allowing this deadly threat to remain undisturbed.

While I was normally armed, I always retreated rather than start a fight. A handgun or rifle has a limited number of rounds and these feral packs can outnumber the rounds in a sixgun, and carrying two or more guns won't help. These creatures will swarm in fast, so fast in fact, that simply getting off a couple of shots might be all one could do.

In a stand one day during the deer season I saw a doe running full out with a large dog right behind. Without conscious thought I reflexively brought the rifle up and fired - great running shot on my part that I could not duplicate at my present age. The dog dropped and the doe vanished. I got to feeling bad about it later as I ran the incident over in my mind. I thought that I'd maybe destroyed someone's pet; It was a reflexive shot on my part taken purely on instinct. I hated what I did and still regret it even though I do not know how necessary my actions were.
 

R.J.Bruce

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Hanshi, you did the right thing. As I stated before, domesticated dogs & cats, have NO PLACE in the wilderness ecosystem. It does not matter if that ecosystem extends up to your back yard in a suburban neighborhood, or is out in the boonies.

Unlike their wild members of the canine species, domesticated dogs have NOTHING TO OFFER the wild ecosystem but disruption. Their familiarity with man, precludes them EVER being a productive element in a wilderness setting.

The problem lies in the domestic dog's long disassociation from its wild ancestors, and its GREAT FAMILIARITY with human behavior. Many of these traits are now keyed into a domestic dogs DNA so that just like a completely wild animal, it either is born KNOWING CERTAIN THINGS, or it only has to be reminded once, or twice, for that behavior pattern to kick right in. Call it instinct.

Whatever you choose to call it, these behaviors, this familiarity with human behavior, is what makes them far more dangerous than wild dogs in North America. Coyote's and wolve's same ancestral DNA coded instinct keeps them wary of humans. NOT SO feral dogs, especially ones in packs. More especially, ones weighing in above 50 pounds. Any single feral dog weighing in above 50 pounds, with a well established sense of human behavior, and even more so with a well established sense of its own capabilities, ia an EXTREMELY FORMIDABLE OPPONENT!!!!!

Confronting them alone on the ground in packs, unless armed with a semi-auto, magazine-fed, large capacity, tactical shotgun loaded with #4 buckshot; it is probably best to try and do as Hanshi did, and back away from them to avoid a fight. Even armed as above, there is a GOOD CHANCE that one could still be overwhelmed if the pack is large enough.
 

Rum River

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I grew up as fourth generation dairy farmer on the same patch of dirt I live on now. Farm comprises 160 acres upon which at that time we routinely had 80-90 head of cattle (beef and dairy) as well as 2,000 laying hens. Every stray dog in the area knew about our livestock.

Standard procedure when any dogs began worrying the animals.....
1) First appearance: Yell, wave arms, throw sticks, dirt clods or whatever was handy.
2) Second appearance: Purposely aimed near misses - stinging gravel or in some cases just the report of the firearm sent them on their way.
3) Third appearance: Drop 'em quick, no more messing around.

Numbers one and two took care of the vast majority. If they keep coming back after that they ain't a gonna stop.
 

waarp8nt

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On more than just a couple of occasions, while hunting and even while just walking not far from our house, I was threatened by feral packs that congregated facing me with teeth bared, savagely growling. I always carefully backed away (even though armed) vacating the immediate area. One does not run as this can stimulate them to attack.
Whatever you choose to call it, these behaviors, this familiarity with human behavior, is what makes them far more dangerous than wild dogs in North America. Coyote's and wolve's same ancestral DNA coded instinct keeps them wary of humans. NOT SO feral dogs, especially ones in packs. More especially, ones weighing in above 50 pounds. Any single feral dog weighing in above 50 pounds, with a well established sense of human behavior, and even more so with a well established sense of its own capabilities, ia an EXTREMELY FORMIDABLE OPPONENT!!!!!

Confronting them alone on the ground in packs, unless armed with a semi-auto, magazine-fed, large capacity, tactical shotgun loaded with #4 buckshot; it is probably best to try and do as Hanshi did, and back away from them to avoid a fight. Even armed as above, there is a GOOD CHANCE that one could still be overwhelmed if the pack is large enough.
Gentlemen, I am certainly glad you posted here. While I consider myself an accomplished marksman and I am just enough of a woodsman to know not to run. I likely would not have considered backing down or walking away from a larger pack of dogs even if the odds were stacked against me. I certainly learned something, slowly backing away would be much simpler and if backing away doesn't work, you can still defend yourself. Even with my trusty revolver as a backup, I still would have only 7 shots without reloading, no matter the number of aggressors, backing away from a larger pack of dogs certainly does make sense. It may just save your life.
 

R.J.Bruce

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The problem with just shooting into a pack of dogs, with any weapon, but especially with a handgun, is being able to IDENTIFY, and QUICKLY KILL the alpha male, alpha female, and both of their next two (at least) ranking followers in the pack hierarchy. Depending upon the number of dogs in the pack, of course.

Unless one can QUICKLY sow dissension into how the pack thinks, and operates, then the chances of a single human, NO MATTER HOW GOOD A SHOT THEY ARE, surviving the encounter without being at least maimed for life, if not killed outright, is pretty SLIM!!!!

I took one of Tom Brown's survival classes in New Jersey some decades ago. He spoke on this subject when a student in the class asked him about being treed up in a huge tree (oak?) for 2 days one summer with his childhood friend Rick, when in the Pine Barrens, circa 1960's. Something he recounts in one of his books. They were teenagers at the time, I think (not sure), and it took several days for the dogs to lose interest in them.
 

Ben Meyer

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I know this is a black powder forum and website, but I'd never go into the woods, hiking, hunting, whatever, with JUST a black powder gun. Yes, I know Daniel Boone et al did that, for months at a time, in wolf and bear filled wilderness, but I'd bet if a modern revolver was available to him, he'd have had one! We've all seen the Jeremiah Johnson wolf scene. In real life, they'd have eaten him.

I feel completely safe in the woods with my S&W .357mag, at least any woods east of the Mississippi. If im armed with that and die from a feral dog attack, well, I guess it was just my time to go!
 
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Pork Chop

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I used to hunt a military base as a kid. It had a known pack of feral dogs. They were aggressive. I carry a modern sidearm when I hunt because of this. I have never had to use it, but better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.
 

R.J.Bruce

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Ben Meyer,

Multiple scenarios have been presented in this thread already by men posting where they were confronted by multiple feral dogs in a pack. Where their backs WERE NOT up against a large tree.

Rerardless of the caliber of the handgun being CARRIED on ones person, and the OPERATIVE word here is carried on ones person in a HOLSTER, it's going to take TIME to bring that pistol into play. Unless the handgun is already in ones hand when the confrontation with the feral dogs goes down, the dogs will ALWAYS have the advantage.

And, remember, most feral dogs did not get to be in a pack without being as SMART AS A DOG CAN BE. They are already habituated to our human behavior, and depending upon their human owner(s), they might be familiar with firearms.

I am NOT WILLING to bet my life that a pack of feral dogs, up close to me in the woods, will turn & run at my removing a handgun from a holster.

If that .357 Magnum revolver is holstered, the time it takes to bring it into play is time enough for the pack to attack a person, and overwhelm them.

There is a reason that Alaskan's carry pump shotguns loaded with straight rifled slugs, or 50/50 rifled slugs/buckshot in grizzly bear/ predator country. Unfortunately, in the Lower 48 states, most folks don't go about armed like that on an everyday basis.

Unless, my back was protected by a large enough tree to prevent feral dogs from getting behind me, regardless of how I was armed, scaling back the confrontation so that I DID NOT have to use deadly force, would seem to be the wisest course to take.

It's all about tactics, not my ego. On the ground, the dog wins EVERYTIME, against this osteoarthritic 66 year old man, who happens to be quite a respectable handgun shot.
 

R.J.Bruce

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I will say this, and let it be. If you live in an area where feral dogs are a menace, then do not go into the woods unarmed.

I see zero difference, in reality, between feral dogs, say in (pick a state), and a grizzly bear roaming about in rural Anchorage, Alaska. They are both threats to my safety and well being. Going about armed with a pump shotgun filled with #4 buckshot in rural Arkansas (picked a state), to protect myself from feral dogs is just smart. I do not want a handgun to be my ONLY defense in such a situation.

Approach the problem from a military point of view. Think TACTICS, not convenience, ease of carry, nor ego.
 

Walkingeagle

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We've all seen the Jeremiah Johnson wolf scene. In real life, they'd have eaten him.
Fwiw, I have run a couple wolves off an exhausted whitetail buck with nothing but a 6” crescent wrench in my hand. Real life from someone who has lived it!
Wild dogs and wolves are not the same animal. Wolves are way smarter and know the threat humans are.
Walk
 

Ben Meyer

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I agree shotguns are always best. In my situation this past November, it caught us totally by surprise. There were 2 pics of the same 2-3 dogs over a 3+ month span. I was hunting with my Marlin 336 in .30-30, which I immediately shouldered. From that night on, when back in that area, as soon as my feet hit the ground climbing down from an evening hunt, the pistol was in my hand for the hike out. Headlamp on, and on alert.

Ben Meyer,

Multiple scenarios have been presented in this thread already by men posting where they were confronted by multiple feral dogs in a pack. Where their backs WERE NOT up against a large tree.

Rerardless of the caliber of the handgun being CARRIED on ones person, and the OPERATIVE word here is carried on ones person in a HOLSTER, it's going to take TIME to bring that pistol into play. Unless the handgun is already in ones hand when the confrontation with the feral dogs goes down, the dogs will ALWAYS have the advantage.

And, remember, most feral dogs did not get to be in a pack without being as SMART AS A DOG CAN BE. They are already habituated to our human behavior, and depending upon their human owner(s), they might be familiar with firearms.

I am NOT WILLING to bet my life that a pack of feral dogs, up close to me in the woods, will turn & run at my removing a handgun from a holster.

If that .357 Magnum revolver is holstered, the time it takes to bring it into play is time enough for the pack to attack a person, and overwhelm them.

There is a reason that Alaskan's carry pump shotguns loaded with straight rifled slugs, or 50/50 rifled slugs/buckshot in grizzly bear/ predator country. Unfortunately, in the Lower 48 states, most folks don't go about armed like that on an everyday basis.

Unless, my back was protected by a large enough tree to prevent feral dogs from getting behind me, regardless of how I was armed, scaling back the confrontation so that I DID NOT have to use deadly force, would seem to be the wisest course to take.

It's all about tactics, not my ego. On the ground, the dog wins EVERYTIME, against this osteoarthritic 66 year old man, who happens to be quite a respectable handgun shot.
 

SPQR70AD

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anybody shoots a dog that aint attacking him is not human. there was no reason for the OP to shoot that dog other then the fact that he had to kill something cause he did not get a deer. it is all about killing
 

Rum River

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anybody shoots a dog that aint attacking him is not human. there was no reason for the OP to shoot that dog other then the fact that he had to kill something cause he did not get a deer. it is all about killing
I went back and re-read the OP's initial post to make sure I didn't misunderstand something.
I didn't misunderstand.
It's my opinion the shooting of the dog was justified.
 

BruceS

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As someone who has been bitten by a dog with stitches in my face and inside my mouth, any dog that acts aggressive to me on MY property regardless of who owns that dog, will be shot!
 

Bob McBride

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I understand some of us live in very different worlds and have very different ideals, but here in very rural TN I had a very huge feral Pyrenees kill half a dozen chickens, ducks, and two of my goats. The very same year he attacked my very elderly neighbor at his mailbox to the tune of about 40 stitches. A week later he wandered by, on some dastardly business no doubt, while I was at the range with an AR. His reign of terror ended very abruptly, without pity or warning, and for the rest of the day I was a very happy human. I was going to make a sandwich that afternoon but as I was so pleased with myself I treated myself to fried chicken and mashed potaters at the KFC.
 
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