PDA

View Full Version : Bear beats up pit bull



steve hiker
2003-07-23, 01:21
Black bear fights off dog in Smokies
2003-07-22 by Thomas Fraser of The Daily Times Staff

If you ever wondered which animal would come out the winner in a showdown between a domestic pit bull and a wild black bear, an incident in Great Smoky Mountains National Park Saturday may be a good indication.

Black bear in a TKO.

Smokies rangers Monday were asking the public for more information following a bizarre incident in Cades Cove Saturday that saw a pit bull owned by a Georgia man attack a black bear and her three cubs while they were the focus of a ``bear jam'' on Loop Road.

At 8 p.m., a crowd of visitors were watching the bear and her cubs near Hyatt Lane when the pit bull ran from the road and attacked a cub. The sow took offense, swiped the dog, and chased it into the crowd.

The bear only gave up when a visitor threw a camcorder at the bear's head, said Park spokesman Bob Miller. The camcorder did not survive the ordeal.

After the incident, witnesses provided a description of the vehicle to Park rangers, who pulled over a Dodge truck driven by 46-year-old Danny Hollifield, of Villa Rica, Ga., ``a few miles from the Cove,'' Miller said.

Rangers temporarily ``confiscated'' the pit bull inside the vehicle, which was examined and determined to have ``claw marks consistent with the bear encounter,'' Miller said.

Park rangers want more information from witnesses to determine whether Hollifield ordered the dog after the bears, or whether the animal bolted from the vehicle.

``He is ultimately responsible for the dog,'' Miller said, but rangers are seeking witnesses ``to corroborate the circumstances of the dog getting at the bear.''

An attempt to reach Hollifield by telephone was unsuccessful.

Pencil Pusher
2004-07-24, 15:37
It's lucky the sow didn't kill it. Don't mess with mama's kids, though it'd be a real shame if the owner did give such an idiotic command. Too bad a camcorder was destroyed in the incident.

The Hammocker
2005-01-30, 13:24
Why would someone order their pet to do something like that though?

SGT Rock
2005-01-30, 13:34
It is a good reason not to bring a dog into the back country. Dogs are not allowed on any of the trail in the Smokies including Cades Cove. I have heard of the Rangers allowing a small dog on a leash up in Cades Cove on the trails to the cabins, but probably more like turning a blind eye more than anything.

jimtanker
2005-01-30, 14:28
Why would someone throw a camcorder at a bear. I would have gotten it on film and posted it here on the net.

SGT Rock
2005-01-30, 15:05
LOL, good idea!

Sgathak
2005-01-30, 17:35
Ive been following a recent discussion of bear encounters around yellow stone and alaska.

Since its a VERY long thread, Ill leave out the details, however - when in bear country - bear spray less than 1 year old is probably your "best bet". A rifle or pistol in heavy caliber (9mm dont count) is more effective if you use it right (I dont want to hear no treehuggerness here. If your attacked by a bear your fighting for your life. The Smokies have the highest human death by bear rates in the US.) However, the Rangers in Alaska have stopped recommending carrying a firearm for protection. The reason why is - unless your "in control", your more likely to THROW THE RIFLE AT THE BEAR than fire it. Human reaction. Id venture to say thats why Ol blackie got a face full of Sony.

As for Dogs in the backcountry... Im a HUGE supporter of trail dogs. A well trained, well conditoned dog being led on leash in good for everyone. The problem occurs when people dont pay attention to other hikers/wildlife or arent aware enough to clean up after their dog (trail mines)... neither of which are excusable.

SGT Rock
2005-01-30, 17:38
Part of the problem the Smokies is trying to contend with is parvo. Although your dog is vaccinated against it, it can still carry it. We found this out the hard way with a puppy once. Anyway, since dog feces can spread parvo, a dog in the back country can unintentionally infect other animals.

Sgathak
2005-01-30, 17:47
Not nessesarily. Parvo is spread by feces, but that just means you dont use a stick to fling it off trail. Carry a small cathole shovel (it can go in the dog pack) and when you see Fido getting ready tell him something like "potty" (not "no", no is for when he did something wrong, "potty" just remind him hold it for a second), take him off trail as far as reasonable, let him do the deed, and bury it in a cathole.

No less work than you would go through for yourself right?

SGT Rock
2005-01-30, 17:57
Yes, but I would venture to say (based on observation and experience) that less than about 10% of dog owners would do this even if they knew to.

Sgathak
2005-01-30, 18:06
Yup... thats probably a sad but true statment.

Which is why its so important to "put the word out" so that people know to do it, or at least have a little bit of a conscience bug gnawing at them when they dont... maybe next time.

Im actually working at getting a position with Petsmart as a dog trainer specifically so I can work with people and dogs... and hopefully down the line develope a "trail dog" program for people intested in bringing their dogs on hikes. I can envision one big topic already - "catholes aint just for cats ya jerk!!"

Salvelinus
2005-02-20, 01:23
Unfortunately, I'm pretty sure that "putting the word out" just won't do it. Sgathak, you're obviously intelligent and able to comprehend not only the needs of the dog, but also the perceptions of others, hence your suggestions to keep the dog on lead, train it properly, and to take it off the trail to do its business. However, like Sgt Rock said, you (and I) are members of a minority.

In years of working with the public and studying learning and personality styles, I have come to the opinion that the vast majority of people are simply unable to go to those levels of thinking. It just never occurs to them that dog scat on the trail might affect someone else, and if it does occur to them, they aren't able to properly solve the problem. I think the idea of your training sessions is golden, but the people that would go to them are already of the mind that their dogs can be a problem. Again, they are in the minority among dog owners.

I love dogs. Most can't resist my scratching abilities. :biggrin: My labrador is VERY well trained, and will obey voice, hand, and whistle signals. I can swim or run him around a thrown retrieving dummy and he will wait until I tell him to get it. He heels like a champ, and won't bark unless I tell him to or if a stranger is coming through the front door. I won't take him along when I backpack, though, because I use 2 trekking poles, and therefore am unable to keep proper control of a leash. I do take him on nature trails around town where dogs are allowed, though, and he is great to have along, but he is on lead and I carry "pooper scoopers."

I have been attacked in the backcountry by unleashed dogs, most recently two labs, whose owners--without exception--said "they normally don't act like this." When I see a dog running unleashed down the trail, I have no idea if it is friendly or if it will try to take a bite out of me. The labs didn't leave me with much doubt, so I let them talk it over with a couple carbide tips. I'm certain one lost a tooth, but that wouldn't have been enough if the owners hadn't come running. I have actually been wrestling with the weight penalty of carrying a much larger knife in an easily accessible location out of concern for a repeat.

I'm not trying to bring this thread down the path that is so frequently taken on rec.backcountry, I just want to make a point. I've thought long and hard about this subject, and I just think that 1) because there is always a large number of people who will take a mile if given an inch, especially when authority is percieved to be far away, and 2) because most of the rest just can't conceive of the possible actions of their "normally sweet" friends, dogs should be left in town, not brought into the backcountry.

Sorry for the long post, and I hope I haven't offended. It's all just MHO. :smile:

--Scott

Sgathak
2005-02-20, 04:36
In some ways I agree.. In most ways, I dont.

While its quite obvious that "putting the word out" wont be enough, theres a reason it was put in quotation marks. Just like every other backcountry user, those of us with "trail dogs" have to be good ambassadors. Its more than just the basics. Its speaking at trail conferences. Its printing pamphlets, and carrying a few with you to hand out on the trail. Its providing proper education at every opportunity. Its talking to owners of dogs when you see them walking there dogs off-leash in on-leash only areas. Its talking to Rangers so they know not all dogs are trail morons. Its being willing to be the guy who takes his dog because his dog is a good example.

There will always be some people who think they can skate the system... but I honestly think its often as much a case of simple ignorance as anything else....

Ive been thinking for a long time that it might be in everyones best interest if my dog starts wearing a "service dog" type vest on the trail when he isnt wearing his dog pack. It wouldnt say "service dog" on it though. Something like "trail dog" on one side, with little "miles walked" tabs, and on the other is a patch saying "Im a trained trail dog. Please support dogs in the backcountry. Ask how!"

Further. Some stronger effort should be made to lobby Rangers to allow dogs in the backcountry, and if they are caught off leash, deficating on the trail, or otherwise being a hazard, the HUMAN should be punished. Maybe owners of trail dogs could volunteer to cover various trails keeping track of problems, and notify the authorities? Then, problems can be addressed more effectivly.

Fact is, and your post bears it out... dogs are not the problem. People are.

As for the use of hiking poles... if your dog will walk in a solid heel, use a carabeaner to connect his leash to your belt. If your worried about the dog pulling uncontrolably, or just dont like being "tied" to the dog, consider that Skijorers use a quick disconnect link up for their dogs, and can cut the dog loose at any time if need be... and that some dogs will pull/stop pulling on command, making getting up a tough hill as walk in the park.

Iceman
2005-02-20, 10:49
I really think the issue here isn't the occasional doggie pooh pooh on the trail, but rather the trail obliterating ankle deep horse schitt found on the trails out here in the Pacific Northwest. I have had to sidetrek piles so large they defy description, and I lost the trail. Some even creating their own weather pattern. What do they feed these animals, anyway? How about you folks out east, same problem?

Sgathak
2005-02-20, 11:28
You know Iceman, I almost mentioned that.

Dogs = bad, but horses = good?

A dog kept on leash can be a small nusance. A horse, on the other hand ... those are flat out dangerous if they get spooked. On top of that, the biggest dog cant come close to the road apples dropped by a small pony. Further, horses with their iron shod feet and 1000lbs frames cut up the trail... They require some sort of paddocking when used for long term backcountry travel, and unlike dogs, cant carry their own food, so they eat the grasses wherever they are tied up. Left along enough they will leave bald scars on the earth.

But horses still = good huh? Dogs = bad?

Maybe we split the difference and only pack goats are allowed off the paved road.

Salvelinus
2005-02-20, 18:56
Maybe we split the difference and only pack goats are allowed off the paved road.

Hehe. My wife would LOVE that . . .

I appreciate your response to my post. Wow--you've really thought this out. Good for you, and hopefully, good for the rest of us. Great idea on the 'beener--I'll have to try that. My only other issue is shelter. No room in my tent (my dog weighs 100 lb, and is not overweight), and my wife won't allow the use of just a tarp. I've thought of trying a small children's tent as long as it was waterproof, and as long as the dog carries it. Any ideas?



Fact is, and your post bears it out... dogs are not the problem. People are.


Exactly. That was my point. I think your ideas are full of merit and possibility, but I'll remain skeptical that any but the most intelligent and empathetic will change in their ways. I'll try some of your suggestions, though.

I just wish more people would try to live up to the quote (forgot who said it): Everyday I strive to be the kind of person my dog thinks I am . . . .

--Scott

Lanthar
2005-02-20, 19:36
My only other issue is shelter. No room in my tent (my dog weighs 100 lb, and is not overweight), and my wife won't allow the use of just a tarp. I've thought of trying a small children's tent as long as it was waterproof, and as long as the dog carries it. Any ideas?


Why not a good simple tarp for the dog? why make him carry too much?

Sgathak
2005-02-20, 21:22
Thanks for the complementary response... I hope that I can "walk the talk" and maybe in a few years dogs wont be quite so maligned in the back country.

As for dog shelter.... I "solo" and my fiancee has no intention of going backpacking so Im a little free'd up. My dog is also kind of small (English Shepherd, he weighs about 55lbs) so he sleeps under the tarp with me. However, Im planning another trip to Russia in a few years, and while there plan to bring back a Black Russian Terrier. Despite their terrier name, they are bigger than Rottweilers... and I dont think 2 dogs and myself will fit under a 7x7 tarp.

Dogs are tougher than people, and if allowed to spend plenty of time outside, and are a double coated breed, they can usually sustain quite cold temperatures without a lot of protection. That being said, there are options for dogs not able to cope with colder weather... sleeping pads from cascade designs (campk9), coats and boots from RuffWear, Dog packs from numerous makers to carry it all in, and for shelter.... a tarp cut to nearly useless size for humans makes an excellent tarp for dogs. 4' x 4' Sil Nylon or Tyvek mini tarp can be rigged to easily cover over that CampK9 pad, and is so light that even a small dog can carry it.

A quick list of gear a dog should (be able to) carry - While I wont weigh the above, I can give a rough idea on each item.

Collar and Leash 2-8 oz.
Backpack 10-20oz
Coat (If needed. Nordic breeds and many others dont need it) 5-10oz
Boots 4-6oz
Small dog FAK 5oz
Sleep pad (If needed. Nordic breeds and many others dont need it) 4-7oz
Small tarp (If needed. But even the most weatherproof coats like to get under shelter in a rain storm...) 5-8oz
Bowls for food and water 5-10oz (depending on capacity)

*Top* weight should be 54oz (3lbs 6oz) - well within the carrying capacity of a dog needing the largest and heaviest of the gear listed. (2lbs 3oz is lowest)

A dog should be able to carry its own food and water as well. However, since thats a variable, we can leave this out for arguements sake.

Dogs can comfortably handle about 25% of their body weight... meaning a 100lbs dog can comfortably handle 25lbs.... assuming 1lbs of food per day (high protein diets easily handled by dogs can weigh less with more return per oz) and a base weight of 3lbs... a weeklong trip should be only about 10lbs. Easily within comfort range.

Salvelinus
2005-02-20, 21:31
Why not a good simple tarp for the dog? why make him carry too much?


No room in my tent (my dog weighs 100 lb, and is not overweight), and my wife won't allow the use of just a tarp.


I have no intention of making my best friend carry too much, Lanthar, he's not as young as he used to be (neither am I). Nevertheless, thanks for the concern! I won't go into why my wife doesn't want him to sleep "out in the open," but I respect her wishes.

Sgathak, thank you very much for the info. I'll think about it.

--Scott :)

Sgathak
2005-02-21, 05:08
A little off topic, but since you bolded the line...

Is there a specific reason she wont allow a tarp?

The reason I ask is that there are many very weatherproof floorless tents out there. Not really a tarp, but a true floorless tent. Many of which have "bug nets" for when creepy crawlie season comes around (which in my experience is not often if the canopy will close fully and you carry a bug coil) and are big enough for 2+ to as many as 4 for less weight than a tent.

Kifaru Paratipi, Kifaru 4Man Tipi (backpackers Editors Choice winner), GoLite Hex, and the GoLite Hut 2 for example. MSR makes a traditional tarp called the Trekker, and they make a simple netted A-frame bug shelter to go under that as well... just some options

In fact, those Kifarus will even accept a woodburning stove - combined weight is often less than a floored tent of smaller dim's.

Forgot to add that a floorless tent has ALOT of great benefits... not the least of which is that you never have to worry about Fido putting a hole in the floor.

Bearpaw
2005-02-21, 16:00
Why would someone order their pet to do something like that though?

In Cades Cove, "tourist" mentality rules. The Cove is a 10-mile or so loop road that tourists drive to visit historic cabins and churches of the communities that lived here before the NPS forced the residents out. You can probably hike this loop quicker than you can drive it due to deer and occasional bear "jams", people stopping to look at wildlife.

A couple of years ago, a tourist observed a yearling black bear (maybe 100 lbs worth) trying to kill a small deer. Outraged that a viscious predator would try to molest Bambi, he got out of his car, rushed the bear, picked it up and body slammed it WWE style. Rangers eventually tracked him down and fined him heavily for molesting wildlife, but it didn't help the hungry bruised bear.

Salvelinus
2005-02-21, 17:48
Sgathak--I hear you, believe me. As far as the reasons, pretty vague and irrational issues with the dog "being bothered by something." Won't even let him sleep in the vestibule. This has been an issue in the past, and I've tried to talk her out of it to no avail.

Bottom line--if the dog goes with us, he goes in a tent or he doesn't go. :hmpf:


Bearpaw--That's a disturbing story, but one funny visual. Reminds me of the salmon commercial where this guy dukes it out with a bear over a salmon. The bear nailed him with a nice roundhouse kick, but the guy won after he kicked the bear in the groin.

--Scott

Sgathak
2005-02-21, 17:52
For a bit of giggles

Ruff Wear "Mutt Hut" dog tent - over 4lbs - http://www.ruffwear.com/products/dog_tent/default.asp
GuardianGear Alpine Slumber Dog - weight unknown, a similar product I asked about was almost 7 lbs - http://www.petedge.com/shopping/product/detailmain.jsp?itemID=3891&itemType=PRODUCT&iMainCat=0&iSubCat=0&iSubSubCat=0&iProductID=3891&AS=1

Iceman
2005-02-22, 01:22
Here is a thought, we can manufacture and sell doggy and horsey diapers. You pack it in, you pack it out? Awe nevermind, then you would have to carry around a huge supply of baby wipes and ointment. What was I thinking? Come to think of it, I think I have already seen doggy diapers on the market. What is this world coming to..? Besides, there is no way in the world that I am going to pack out any schitt, be it doggy, horsey, or my own.

therob
2005-03-23, 01:54
From my last two trips on the A.T. it seems the peoples poop is the problem. I find it hard to beleive that people wont bury their s--t. If I step in bear or deer dung, cool, I'm in the woods. But when I'm looking at your spagettios on my boot, it pisses me right off. Luckily dogs poop stinks worser than bear or deer, so I can smell it coming. But its still wrong.

Iceman
2005-03-24, 00:39
If you sprinkle dry gravy mix on the trail chalupa, the next dog down the trail will carry off the whole mess in his belly. Works in my front yard. :biggrin:

Rage in a Cage
2005-03-24, 02:18
If you sprinkle dry gravy mix on the trail chalupa, the next dog down the trail will carry off the whole mess in his belly. Works in my front yard. :biggrin:
:biggrin: :biggrin: :biggrin: :biggrin: :biggrin: :biggrin:

Salvelinus
2005-03-26, 15:25
BRILLIANT!!!!!!!!!!

:rofl:

Thanks, Iceman, I needed that . . . :biggrin:

--Scott

Iceman
2005-03-31, 01:52
Just doing my part.

Verlager
2005-10-16, 19:45
... I have had to sidetrek piles so large they defy description, and I lost the trail. Some even creating their own weather pattern. What do they feed these animals, anyway? How about you folks out east, same problem?Reminds me of when the plumbing broke and we had no running water. We used an improvised cat litter box as a privy, and visitors thought we had a mountain lion as a pet.

bird dog
2005-10-17, 22:19
Cades Cove is definately a tourist spot. I have been twice in the last year. Once, I saw a lady try to get up close to a cub that was feeding on some berries. When she got within a few yards, Mom decided the tourist was too close and decided to rush the would-be photographer. Everyone from the bear-jam began yelling enough to get moms attention so the camera lady could get back to the safety of the crowd.

When she got back to the crowd, she commented on how she could not believe a "Tame" bear would act in such a way!

People can be sooooo naive.

BD

Seeker
2005-10-18, 02:01
Cades Cove is definately a tourist spot. I have been twice in the last year. Once, I saw a lady try to get up close to a cub that was feeding on some berries. When she got within a few yards, Mom decided the tourist was too close and decided to rush the would-be photographer. Everyone from the bear-jam began yelling enough to get moms attention so the camera lady could get back to the safety of the crowd.

When she got back to the crowd, she commented on how she could not believe a "Tame" bear would act in such a way!

People can be sooooo naive.

BD, didn't i warn you to stay out of the Cove? :damnmate: LOL

only go to the south side of the park... the north side is full of tourons...

there's a tame bear exhibit back further West on I-40, at the Knoxville Zoo... (actually, they do have a pretty nice new exhibit there on black bears.)

bird dog
2005-10-18, 19:54
BD, didn't i warn you to stay out of the Cove? :damnmate: LOL

only go to the south side of the park... the north side is full of tourons...

there's a tame bear exhibit back further West on I-40, at the Knoxville Zoo... (actually, they do have a pretty nice new exhibit there on black bears.)

Thanks Seeker....Thats what I like about you...Youre always looking out for my best interests....Yea, I think you did warn me though. However, I was trying to get the family interested in the outdoors...Didnt work though...My wife and girls said they would shop while I hiked....Works for me!!!!!

Seeker
2005-10-19, 17:36
sorry it didn't work... i gots two that won't and one that will... unless it's really hot, then i have three that won't...

trying to think of something really easy, but there aren't any flat walks i can think of... just 'less steep'... and even that's relative... clingman's dome is short but steep, but worth it on a clear day... charlie's bunion is also worth it, but it's pretty steep in places, and not a good kids hike... middle prong to the lynn camp cascades is pretty easy... go in at tremont, and you can see the cascades at about a mile, or indian flats falls at 4 miles... old RR grade, and a fairly steady climb... no up and down, just gentle 'up'... easy walk out though!

bird dog
2005-10-19, 21:26
Seeker, we did Clingamans Dome last time up. It was a typical "Smoky" day (didnt know they had clear days in them parts), and the temperature was at least fifteen degrees cooler up there. I drug the kids up with me and the wife stopped about half way. She caught up with us on top, and the kids were none impressed. We left, checked into our hotel, and they went shopping and penny squashing while I went to the Happy Hiker!

Ive given up on the family hiking partner. The wife isnt into it, and the kids are still too small. Maybe when they get a little bigger one of the two will like it. Thanks for the info tho. BD

Seeker
2005-10-20, 00:33
BD,

sorry man...

i lived in knoxville for about 7 years.... went to clingman's several times, and only twice was it clear enough to see far... but boy, what a view... talked with several thru hikers over the years too, and read a lot of journal entries in the nearby shelters... lots of disappointed folks. apparently it's a pretty rare thing to have a clear day up there...went up in the winter too (up newfound gap road... the clingman's road closes in nov, i think), just to see some snow and have a snowball fight with the kids... i found that it was best seen in the fall, on a weekday, or you'd get mobbed by tourons who've never seen fall foliage before...

speaking of city folks, here's a sad commentary... we got a lot of kids in from new orleans after katrina. once up here away from the city lights, one of them evidently told his teacher 'so there really are stars... i've never seen them before'... i can't imagine growing up like that... my wife works for the local united way after-school homework program, as a tutor... she asked one of her kids, an evacuee, how she liked it here. the answer was 'oh, it's nice... back in NO, there's always someone getting shot'...

bird dog
2005-10-22, 00:54
Seeker, thats another reason why I got back into backpacking. While I dont live in NYC or NO, the city I work in is large enough to have the same problems, just not on such a large scale. Its great to get in the woods and leave all of this mess behind that I see everyday. Im callous now to most of it, in that not much of it bothers me any longer, but its always nice to get back to something much simpler, away from the problems I have to deal with at work daily. BD

Seeker
2005-10-23, 01:38
side note to those wondering what any of this has to do with bears beating up pit bulls- this is WHY we go to the woods... to avoid seeing people beat up people, or to avoid US beating up people... (i 'spin' for a living... can you tell?)