Cyclist’s leg punctured by dog startled by bikes

Cotswold Journal: STARTLED: A Leonberger similar to the one that bit cyclist and triathlete Teresa Roberts. STARTLED: A Leonberger similar to the one that bit cyclist and triathlete Teresa Roberts.

A CYCLIST was left with puncture wounds to her leg and was unable to compete in several triathlons when she was bitten by a “startled” dog.

Teresa Roberts was pedalling along Baughton Lane, Strensham, near Upton, at about 7.30pm on May 2 when she was hurt by the Leonberger.

Abbey Kingston, prosecuting at Worcester Magistrates Court, said although the dog was on a lead the whole time, Mrs Roberts and her husband described seeing it dragging its owner, Christine Lees, along the floor in the run up to the incident.

After the bite, Lees regained control of the dog and immediately took it into her home.

Mrs Roberts suffered two puncture wounds to the front and back of her right lower leg and was unable to complete in several triathlon events as a result. Ms Kingston said she was not seeking compensation for the victim as a civil settlement had already been made, but she asked the bench to consider imposing a control order on the dog requiring it to wear a muzzle in public.

Lees, of Baughton Lane, Strensham, pleaded guilty to allowing a dog to be dangerously of control in public.

Greg Gordon, defending, said the dog’s behaviour was defensive and she was not aggressive by nature.

He said it had been bright sunshine at the time of the incident and his client was startled by a flash of light reflecting off the cyclists’ helmets, to which the dog reacted with a single bite.

Mr Gordon said the dog was on two leads at the time and the loss of control had been down to her owner’s frailty.

He said Lees was a qualified dog trainer and had entered many animals successfully into shows, including the dog involved in the incident.

However, the pensioner suffers from arthritis in her hands and had since signed her pet over to a breeder. She urged magistrates not to impose a muzzle as that would prevent her from taking part in future competitions.

Magistrates fined the defendant £90 and ordered her to pay costs of £85, as well as a £20 victim surcharge.

They imposed a 12-month control order on the dog, requiring her to be on a lead at all times when in public.

Chairman of the bench Ina Steele said: “You did everything you could after the incident, it was just unfortunate that the incident occurred.”

Comments (12)

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10:28pm Mon 12 Aug 13

jakebodge says...

I have a rescue dog which was from the Dogs Trust in Evesham. They did not have much history about the dog but he is frightened of people on pushbikes & is very defensive. I keep a look out for cyclists so that they & the dog are aware of each other to avoid an incident like this one. However I must stress that cyclists must be made more aware of dogs when they approach them as quite often cyclists come from behind without any warning whatsoever. How many cyclists have a bell or similar device- not many!!
I have a rescue dog which was from the Dogs Trust in Evesham. They did not have much history about the dog but he is frightened of people on pushbikes & is very defensive. I keep a look out for cyclists so that they & the dog are aware of each other to avoid an incident like this one. However I must stress that cyclists must be made more aware of dogs when they approach them as quite often cyclists come from behind without any warning whatsoever. How many cyclists have a bell or similar device- not many!! jakebodge

10:56pm Mon 12 Aug 13

Jabbadad says...

I thought it was the law that a big dog such as this one should be both on a lead and muzzled. The excuse that it was frightened of Bikes could also suggest that it wasn't under control and possibly should not be out where cyclists are. And what pathetic comments from the Chairman of the Bench Ina Steele.
I thought it was the law that a big dog such as this one should be both on a lead and muzzled. The excuse that it was frightened of Bikes could also suggest that it wasn't under control and possibly should not be out where cyclists are. And what pathetic comments from the Chairman of the Bench Ina Steele. Jabbadad

2:40am Tue 13 Aug 13

chrism says...

jakebodge wrote:
I have a rescue dog which was from the Dogs Trust in Evesham. They did not have much history about the dog but he is frightened of people on pushbikes & is very defensive. I keep a look out for cyclists so that they & the dog are aware of each other to avoid an incident like this one. However I must stress that cyclists must be made more aware of dogs when they approach them as quite often cyclists come from behind without any warning whatsoever. How many cyclists have a bell or similar device- not many!!
If your dog reacts badly to cyclists, then it is your responsibility to keep him under control, not that of the cyclist. I had a similar comment to yours from the owner of a dog which bit me when I was cycling - implying that it was my fault for not warning her sufficiently. As I pointed out to her, I was making a lot of noise descending a track with loose stones which I was disturbing and if she hadn't heard that then there is no way she'd have heard a bell. Why is it that dog owners seem to think other people should have to make allowances for them not being in full control of their dogs? Is there a law about cyclists warning dog owners of their approach? There certainly is a law about having your dog under full control at all times - if you're walking your dog somewhere you expect to meet cyclists and it is disturbed by them that means keeping it on a lead and being capable of controlling it on the lead.
[quote][p][bold]jakebodge[/bold] wrote: I have a rescue dog which was from the Dogs Trust in Evesham. They did not have much history about the dog but he is frightened of people on pushbikes & is very defensive. I keep a look out for cyclists so that they & the dog are aware of each other to avoid an incident like this one. However I must stress that cyclists must be made more aware of dogs when they approach them as quite often cyclists come from behind without any warning whatsoever. How many cyclists have a bell or similar device- not many!![/p][/quote]If your dog reacts badly to cyclists, then it is your responsibility to keep him under control, not that of the cyclist. I had a similar comment to yours from the owner of a dog which bit me when I was cycling - implying that it was my fault for not warning her sufficiently. As I pointed out to her, I was making a lot of noise descending a track with loose stones which I was disturbing and if she hadn't heard that then there is no way she'd have heard a bell. Why is it that dog owners seem to think other people should have to make allowances for them not being in full control of their dogs? Is there a law about cyclists warning dog owners of their approach? There certainly is a law about having your dog under full control at all times - if you're walking your dog somewhere you expect to meet cyclists and it is disturbed by them that means keeping it on a lead and being capable of controlling it on the lead. chrism

8:36am Tue 13 Aug 13

david350uk says...

Give that dog a medal.
Give that dog a medal. david350uk

10:09am Tue 13 Aug 13

jakebodge says...

I think some cyclists are inconsiderate & break many rules such as riding without lights at night & also riding on footpaths where there are dogs & children! Dogs are allowed in pedestrian areas & footpaths but not bikes. Why is that? I am sure there are more accidents & injuries to people from cyclists than dogs. You see many signs which say no cycling & also keep dogs on a lead. Lets just abide by the rules then we will all be happy.
I think some cyclists are inconsiderate & break many rules such as riding without lights at night & also riding on footpaths where there are dogs & children! Dogs are allowed in pedestrian areas & footpaths but not bikes. Why is that? I am sure there are more accidents & injuries to people from cyclists than dogs. You see many signs which say no cycling & also keep dogs on a lead. Lets just abide by the rules then we will all be happy. jakebodge

10:45am Tue 13 Aug 13

tub_thumper says...

david350uk wrote:
Give that dog a medal.
Troll...
[quote][p][bold]david350uk[/bold] wrote: Give that dog a medal.[/p][/quote]Troll... tub_thumper

10:56am Tue 13 Aug 13

tub_thumper says...

jakebodge wrote:
I have a rescue dog which was from the Dogs Trust in Evesham. They did not have much history about the dog but he is frightened of people on pushbikes & is very defensive. I keep a look out for cyclists so that they & the dog are aware of each other to avoid an incident like this one. However I must stress that cyclists must be made more aware of dogs when they approach them as quite often cyclists come from behind without any warning whatsoever. How many cyclists have a bell or similar device- not many!!
All new bikes sold by bike shops have compulsary micro-bells. Despite their name it is the small size if these bells that are 'micro' and, alas, NOT the sound in which they make.

Even if you don't have a bell then a friendly call from your own voice will alert the dog owner. Saying that, I've rang my bell and on occasions and some dog owners look round, see you coming, yet still let their dog run loose. This is a minority as most dog owners do call their dogs back and hold them still until I've passed. But as for this bitten cyclist, there is no excuse. If the dog has been known to be startled by cyclists then it should not be taken out where cyclists are known to be - public safety and all that. The excuse by jakebodge of cyclist flouting the law is irrelevant. They're basically saying that if cyclists flout the law then it's ok for them to get bitten by a dog. Nonsense!
[quote][p][bold]jakebodge[/bold] wrote: I have a rescue dog which was from the Dogs Trust in Evesham. They did not have much history about the dog but he is frightened of people on pushbikes & is very defensive. I keep a look out for cyclists so that they & the dog are aware of each other to avoid an incident like this one. However I must stress that cyclists must be made more aware of dogs when they approach them as quite often cyclists come from behind without any warning whatsoever. How many cyclists have a bell or similar device- not many!![/p][/quote]All new bikes sold by bike shops have compulsary micro-bells. Despite their name it is the small size if these bells that are 'micro' and, alas, NOT the sound in which they make. Even if you don't have a bell then a friendly call from your own voice will alert the dog owner. Saying that, I've rang my bell and on occasions and some dog owners look round, see you coming, yet still let their dog run loose. This is a minority as most dog owners do call their dogs back and hold them still until I've passed. But as for this bitten cyclist, there is no excuse. If the dog has been known to be startled by cyclists then it should not be taken out where cyclists are known to be - public safety and all that. The excuse by jakebodge of cyclist flouting the law is irrelevant. They're basically saying that if cyclists flout the law then it's ok for them to get bitten by a dog. Nonsense! tub_thumper

11:20am Tue 13 Aug 13

chrism says...

jakebodge wrote:
I think some cyclists are inconsiderate & break many rules such as riding without lights at night & also riding on footpaths where there are dogs & children! Dogs are allowed in pedestrian areas & footpaths but not bikes. Why is that? I am sure there are more accidents & injuries to people from cyclists than dogs. You see many signs which say no cycling & also keep dogs on a lead. Lets just abide by the rules then we will all be happy.
Exactly what difference does it make whether some other people riding bicycles behave badly? Does it mean that as a cyclist who obeys the rules I then deserve to be bitten by a dog, or is it totally irrelevant to the discussion? I don't believe that dogs are allowed to bite people in pedestrian areas or on footpaths, and I can think of numerous places where dogs aren't allowed to go at all. Why do people have to post such comments on every article about somebody riding perfectly safely and lawfully being injured?

Your assertion about more people being hurt by cyclists is wrong - contrary to popular opinion (propagated by the pro car anti cyclist lobby) there are actually relatively few injuries to pedestrians caused by cyclists. According to the data 510 people were seriously injured by cyclists between 2001 and 2010, which might seem like a lot, except that more than 5000 people are treated in hospital every year due to dog attack. Of course both pale into insignificance compared to the thousands killed and seriously injured by cars.

I do agree with you though that everybody should abide by the rules - I do when cycling. The rules say that dogs must be under control at all times.
[quote][p][bold]jakebodge[/bold] wrote: I think some cyclists are inconsiderate & break many rules such as riding without lights at night & also riding on footpaths where there are dogs & children! Dogs are allowed in pedestrian areas & footpaths but not bikes. Why is that? I am sure there are more accidents & injuries to people from cyclists than dogs. You see many signs which say no cycling & also keep dogs on a lead. Lets just abide by the rules then we will all be happy.[/p][/quote]Exactly what difference does it make whether some other people riding bicycles behave badly? Does it mean that as a cyclist who obeys the rules I then deserve to be bitten by a dog, or is it totally irrelevant to the discussion? I don't believe that dogs are allowed to bite people in pedestrian areas or on footpaths, and I can think of numerous places where dogs aren't allowed to go at all. Why do people have to post such comments on every article about somebody riding perfectly safely and lawfully being injured? Your assertion about more people being hurt by cyclists is wrong - contrary to popular opinion (propagated by the pro car anti cyclist lobby) there are actually relatively few injuries to pedestrians caused by cyclists. According to the data 510 people were seriously injured by cyclists between 2001 and 2010, which might seem like a lot, except that more than 5000 people are treated in hospital every year due to dog attack. Of course both pale into insignificance compared to the thousands killed and seriously injured by cars. I do agree with you though that everybody should abide by the rules - I do when cycling. The rules say that dogs must be under control at all times. chrism

1:18pm Tue 13 Aug 13

Vox populi says...

Its about responsibility nothing else.

As a dog owner your are responsible for their actions and behaviour. This requires controlling them whatever the circumstances.

Would it be ok if one of my children was "scared" and bit your dogs ear off or poked a finger in one of its eyes?

No I didn't think so.....
Its about responsibility nothing else. As a dog owner your are responsible for their actions and behaviour. This requires controlling them whatever the circumstances. Would it be ok if one of my children was "scared" and bit your dogs ear off or poked a finger in one of its eyes? No I didn't think so..... Vox populi

2:39pm Tue 13 Aug 13

Name unknown says...

Let's put the stereotypes back in the box...

We're not talking about a young Chav with a status dog, nor a cyclist riding on a footway (since Baughtan Lane does not have one!). Sometimes **** does just happen, even to generally responsible people. The person cycling has been compensated and the person walking the dog has had her card marked. Neither of them sound like anti-social outcasts hell-bent on wrecking your life next, so let's just move on...
Let's put the stereotypes back in the box... We're not talking about a young Chav with a status dog, nor a cyclist riding on a footway (since Baughtan Lane does not have one!). Sometimes **** does just happen, even to generally responsible people. The person cycling has been compensated and the person walking the dog has had her card marked. Neither of them sound like anti-social outcasts hell-bent on wrecking your life next, so let's just move on... Name unknown

2:59pm Tue 13 Aug 13

i-cycle says...

Vox populi wrote:
Its about responsibility nothing else.

As a dog owner your are responsible for their actions and behaviour. This requires controlling them whatever the circumstances.

Would it be ok if one of my children was "scared" and bit your dogs ear off or poked a finger in one of its eyes?

No I didn't think so.....
I agree.

Dog owners should act responsibly and so should all who use public rights of way, whether cyclists, motorists or pedestrians.
[quote][p][bold]Vox populi[/bold] wrote: Its about responsibility nothing else. As a dog owner your are responsible for their actions and behaviour. This requires controlling them whatever the circumstances. Would it be ok if one of my children was "scared" and bit your dogs ear off or poked a finger in one of its eyes? No I didn't think so.....[/p][/quote]I agree. Dog owners should act responsibly and so should all who use public rights of way, whether cyclists, motorists or pedestrians. i-cycle

6:51pm Tue 13 Aug 13

nobby7 says...

speaking of iresponsible dog owners,i took my two young children to play in that little park in brickfields the other day,their was a bunch of people sat next to the park smoking with a couple of staffies not on leads but seen as they were'nt in the actual play area i thought it would be ok,but no as another family opened the gate in ran the dogs whilst their owners just sat their didnt even bother trying to control their dogs even though theirs a sign clearly saying"no dogs" they could'nt give a toss! so we got out of there pretty sharpish even though they were the ones in the wrong,sorry i know its got nothing to do with this artical but it really annoyed me!
speaking of iresponsible dog owners,i took my two young children to play in that little park in brickfields the other day,their was a bunch of people sat next to the park smoking with a couple of staffies not on leads but seen as they were'nt in the actual play area i thought it would be ok,but no as another family opened the gate in ran the dogs whilst their owners just sat their didnt even bother trying to control their dogs even though theirs a sign clearly saying"no dogs" they could'nt give a toss! so we got out of there pretty sharpish even though they were the ones in the wrong,sorry i know its got nothing to do with this artical but it really annoyed me! nobby7

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