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Dogs and treats

CalgaryLynn

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
I am a dog owner and a dog lover so I have no fear but reading some of these posts makes me wonder. Wild dogs can be dangerous and I am sure carrying a pole will be a deterrent. Has anyone carried dog treats with them to throw at the wild dogs? Distract them with some yummies.
 
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trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I am a dog owner and a dog lover so I have no fear but reading some of these posts makes me wonder. Wild dogs can be dangerous and I am sure carrying a pole will be a deterrent. Has anyone carried dog treats with them to throw at the wild dogs? Distract them with some yummies.
I've never encountered "wild dogs." I think that most dogs that you see on the Camino have a home, and most aren't running loose - they are either behind a fence or tied up.
 

henrythedog

Loved and fed by David
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2017, 2018, 2019, Ingles 2018, (Madrid 2019 partial - retired hurt!) (more planned)
I am a dog owner and a dog lover so I have no fear but reading some of these posts makes me wonder. Wild dogs can be dangerous and I am sure carrying a pole will be a deterrent. Has anyone carried dog treats with them to throw at the wild dogs? Distract them with some yummies.
The kind of dogs most likely to be perceived as an issue are livestock-guarding working dogs. The frequency and severity of such issues is generally overstated, but it does happen.

These dogs are best regarded as only semi-domesticated working animals who are used to a different relationship with their humans than a ‘pet’ dog is. (That’s you I’m talking about, Henry..)

Making a ‘picking up a stone’ motion or producing a stick is more likely to avoid confrontation than producing unfamiliar food; all ‘in my opinion’, of course.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
See signature. Too many to list here.
Never had an issue with "wild dogs" personally as well. But I have met some "rather large" livestock working dogs in the countryside. Also I have met a load of "regular sized" working dogs and these ones always make me smile, like when some Aussie or equivalent gets a cow like 10 X its weight (at least) to come back to the road after jumping over a 300 year old rock wall for those "greener pastures" on the other side of the fence.

I would not give any dog I met on the way any food. I mean, I didn't want people giving my dog food when we meet on a walk. I don't have a dog anymore... he was a beautifully kind black lab who now might be walking along those greener pastures himself.

Check out this video of my view of a typical "wild dog encounter" in Spain, IMO.

View attachment me_dog_cows.mov
 
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domigee

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2020? Looks like.... nowhere! 😁
I am a dog owner and a dog lover so I have no fear but reading some of these posts makes me wonder. Wild dogs can be dangerous and I am sure carrying a pole will be a deterrent. Has anyone carried dog treats with them to throw at the wild dogs? Distract them with some yummies.
I am a dog lover too and I used to have dogs 😢 but I am really scared of ‘wild’ dogs... (I was attacked by a German shepherd when I was 7 years old and I never forgot😳).
There aren’t any wild dogs on the Camino francés! Really. You may come across some working dogs, they will ignore you. They’re too busy looking after their flock.
I walked in Eastern countries where wild dogs are indeed a threat so I carried a dog gizmo, alarm, not sure what to call it.
I really would like to put your mind at rest, nothing like that on the Camino francés.
 

CalgaryLynn

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
I am a dog lover too and I used to have dogs 😢 but I am really scared of ‘wild’ dogs... (I was attacked by a German sheapherd when I was 7 years old and I never forgot😳).
There aren’t any wild dogs on the Camino francés! Really. You may come across some working dogs, they will ignore you. They’re too busy looking after their flock.
I walked in Eastern countries where wild dogs are indeed a threat so I carried a dog gizmo, alarm, not sure what to call it.
I really would like to put your mind at rest, nothing like that on the Camino francés.
Unless someone knows otherwise???
Thanks for the reassurance. My dog is a rescue from Mexico and Mexico tends to have many, many, many street dogs but they aren't dangerous, just lonely, hungry and need a friend.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
You may come across some working dogs, they will ignore you.
A good way to know if you have wandered off the Camino is if a dog won't stop barking at you. Dogs along the Camino generally don't get too excited about pilgrims passing by.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
Us:Camino Frances, 2015 Me:Catalan/Aragonese, 2019
In Galicia say "go" firmly and loudly because it sounds similar to "ho" that is the way to say stop to animals and is easy to remember.
Thank you.

However, our dog Beau had no problem telling the difference between Beau, no, and go. "Go to the car" was no problem. He also knew the word Tiger, his favorite friend, the neighbors' cat. On the other hand he had no idea where to go when I said "Go to Peggy." The dog had his priorities.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(May 2018)
VdlP (2022?)
I am a dog owner and a dog lover so I have no fear but reading some of these posts makes me wonder. Wild dogs can be dangerous and I am sure carrying a pole will be a deterrent. Has anyone carried dog treats with them to throw at the wild dogs? Distract them with some yummies.

Never came across any wild dogs.
Many are 'working' dogs and will bark at strangers who come too close to their property or farm animals.

Met lots of friendly dogs, who enjoyed a treat, and cats, cows, horses, a few friendly people too.

My wife Pat carries little stashes of dog treats, cat treats.......



 
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Pelegrin

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
Thank you.

However, our dog Beau had no problem telling the difference between Beau, no, and go. "Go to the car" was no problem. He also knew the word Tiger, his favorite friend, the neighbors' cat. On the other hand he had no idea who to go to when I said "Go to Peggy."
Working dogs understand simple phrases like "go out", "come here", "go to turn Marela (cow name)", etc. But we had an extraordinary clever dog called Manchego that undertood a complex phrase like "Manchego stay here and don´t move. Don´t let the cows leave the field. If you do it right I'll give you a big piece of bacon when we are at home".
 

Zordmot

First timer Spring 2019
Year of past OR future Camino
April-May 2019
Thanks for the reassurance. My dog is a rescue from Mexico and Mexico tends to have many, many, many street dogs but they aren't dangerous, just lonely, hungry and need a friend.
Well said. As a matter of fact today I’m accompanying 5 former street dogs that have been rescued, loved up, cleaned up, vetted up, “fixed” up, and “fed” up from a volunteer organization outside Guadalajara as they fly north to their new forever homes in Portland. bonevoyagedogrescue.com
 

Marbe2

Active member
Year of past OR future Camino
2015-2019 walked all or more than half of CF 7 times... CP recently cancelled by Covid 19!
Occasionally,in small towns, or more remote areas along the CF, we have seen unleased dogs...mostly lying on the ground, totally uninterested in us. Most looked well fed!

When we plan to leave our accommodations early, in the dark, when most Spaniards are, certainly, still sleeping, I make special efforts to befriend the house pets, especially, if I stay at a place that has a dog that is unleashed,

I do keep a couple of treats in my pocket in a baggie, but have never had to use one yet.
 
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Pelegrin

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
Loose dogs could be a problem in Galicia, Asturias and I think in Portugal in some small hamlets outside the different Caminos. Those guard dogs have an alert scale from less to more:

! . Family
2. Neighbors
3. Other people form the rural.
4. Others.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I've never encountered "wild dogs." I think that most dogs that you see on the Camino have a home, and most aren't running loose - they are either behind a fence or tied up.
I have seen lots of what looks like "wild dogs" to me, but thankfully they are always behind a fence or tied up. They most likely have been trained to protect property, whether a private owner or commercial establishment such as these...😁
Screenshot_20210525-083954~2.png Screenshot_20210525-083857~2.png
P.S....The dogs' tails were not wagging.😬
 
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fransw

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2012; Le Puy - Conques 2014;Camino Aragonese Oloron Ste Marie - Puenta la Reina 2018
I have no bad feelings towards dogs but I became really scared since I was seriously bitten by a german shepherd dog in Spain. The local doctor gave me the advice to return home as quicly as possible for care in a hospital. Since then walking alone in isolated countryside is rather demanding for my nerves
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I was bitten by a Rottweiler (not on Camino) while it was walking unleashed with its owner. The dog looked menacing and as I looked in fear, the lady said "Don't worry, he doesn't bite". I was attacked and bitten in the upper arm. Although stitches were not required, I needed a tetanus shot. I've been wary of large dogs being walked with their owners if unleashed ever since and shy away.
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
Thanks for the reassurance. My dog is a rescue from Mexico and Mexico tends to have many, many, many street dogs but they aren't dangerous, just lonely, hungry and need a friend.
I live in a small town in Mexico and what you say is true. What is also true is between the cobblestone and holes in the streets and sidewalks and what the dogs leave behind makes it imperative that you spend alot of time looking down when you walk. There are dog droppings everywhere.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
I'm VERY afraid of dogs, having been attacked as a young woman by a pit bull.
However, I've walked every year for many many years, and have never encountered "wild" or even "dangerous" dogs. Once or twice an ankle-biter has lunged and barked, but Rebekah of Moratinos once gave me advice to bend over and pick up a rock and the dog would flee, and that worked great. I have never had to actually throw a rock - they know what it means.

I personally wouldn't be too worried about dogs along the Camino.

I would not give someone else's dog a treat. The dog could have allergies you aren't aware of, or on a particular diet. I just wouldn't do it.
 

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
I am a dog owner and a dog lover so I have no fear but reading some of these posts makes me wonder. Wild dogs can be dangerous and I am sure carrying a pole will be a deterrent. Has anyone carried dog treats with them to throw at the wild dogs? Distract them with some yummies.

Most dogs, I encountered, are leashed or do not stray beyond their property. They bark at anyone they do not know. I would not recommend you feed them as they may start to follow you.

I was followed by an English Mastiff on the San Salvador for about 10km until I arrived at Cabanillas. He sat outside the Albergue door until the locals had him removed.

That said, I have never felt in danger from any dog on the Camino.

Ultreya,
Joe
 
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CalgaryLynn

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Well said. As a matter of fact today I’m accompanying 5 former street dogs that have been rescued, loved up, cleaned up, vetted up, “fixed” up, and “fed” up from a volunteer organization outside Guadalajara as they fly north to their new forever homes in Portland. bonevoyagedogrescue.com
I would love to do that myself. My dog was so confused and cautious when I first got her. Seven years later she is as sweet and loving as can be. A blessing to my life. She was sent to Canada from an agency such as yours from San Miguel de Allende.
 

CalgaryLynn

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
I have no bad feelings towards dogs but I became really scared since I was seriously bitten by a german shepherd dog in Spain. The local doctor gave me the advice to return home as quicly as possible for care in a hospital. Since then walking alone in isolated countryside is rather demanding for my nerves
Sorry to hear that, the majority of dogs are kindly but there can be dogs that have been abused or treated poorly and they just don't trust "man". I understand your nervousness.
 

CalgaryLynn

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
I was bitten by a Rottweiler (not on Camino) while it was walking unleashed with its owner. The dog looked menacing and as I looked in fear, the lady said "Don't worry, he doesn't bite". I was attacked and bitten in the upper arm. Although stitches were not required, I needed a tetanus shot. I've been wary of large dogs being walked with their owners if unleashed ever since and shy away.
Yikes, some owners are so irresponsible. My dog is more comfortable being walked on a leash than not. In my city, legally the only place to unleash a dog is in a off -leash dog park.
 

CalgaryLynn

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Most dogs, I encountered, are leashed or do not stray beyond their property. They bark at anyone they do not know. I would not recommend you feed them as they may start to follow you.

I was followed by an English Mastiff on the San Salvador for about 10km until I arrived at Cabanillas. He sat outside the Albergue door until the locals had him removed.

That said, I have never felt in danger from any dog on the Camino.

Ultreya,
Joe
That's true, they might follow me!
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
The whole”wild dogs on the Camino” is a legend. On some of the less travelled routes you might occasionally come across a loose dog, but not on the Camino Francés. The story arose from the days when Foncebadon was an abandoned village. By the time I first walked the Camino, in 2001, it was no longer abandoned (a new hotel had been built) and no signs of stray dogs anywhere. All were behind fences or tied up, apart from the occasional very well behaved pet lying across someone’s doorway. In fact dogs on the Camino are so used to pilgrims they rarely notice us.
Immediately post Covid things may be a little different; as it’s been a while since strangers walked through the villages.
 
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Walton

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2016 Sjpp to Sdc. 2018 Lisbon to Sdc to Finisterre. Next up hopefully VDP or Del Norte.
In September od 2016, I was approached by a large barking Alsation dog on the outskirts of I think, Fromista from memory.

Rather than doing anything, I just stopped, didn't make eye contact by looking way into the distance but still able to see him in the periphery. I waited until the dog sniffed my feet and trousers before it lost interest in me after a what seemed like a couple of minutes. I slowly walked away after then.

I figured that the Alsation was probably able to smell the scent of our late dear labrador on my clothes, hence its interest.

It was a bit of a scary moment I must admit.

We also had two menacing dogs threaten us on another camino in Portugal but picking up stones motion, sent them packing. We also had poles too but no need to wave them around on that occasion.

Humans frighten me a lot more than dogs.
 

OTH86

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2017
Walking between Hospital de Orbigo and Villares de Orbigo, I noticed a huge dog ‘resting’ in the middle of the road. There was a field of sheep on the left. So, I figured he was working, and I quietly walked past keeping far to the right. All was quiet as I passed, but just a bit further on, there was quite a commotion with barking and snarling coming from behind me by what sounded like two dogs. I continued walking at the same steady pace, quaking in my boots. At some point, I must have crossed out of their territory, because they stopped barking, and backed off.
In hindsight, I wonder if, in my effort to be quiet, I ended up surprising the dog. It might have been better to shuffle a bit long before I got to him… just to let him know I was there…
 

Zordmot

First timer Spring 2019
Year of past OR future Camino
April-May 2019
I would love to do that myself. My dog was so confused and cautious when I first got her. Seven years later she is as sweet and loving as can be. A blessing to my life. She was sent to Canada from an agency such as yours from San Miguel de Allende.
Fantastic! There are a bunch of these organizations in Mexico. I’d suggest one for you if you wanted to come down and volunteer with them for a few days and then fly back home with 4-5 of them to Portland, Seattle, Las Vegas, Vancouver, or Toronto.
 

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