great story and read really enjoyed it except for the part where you were bitten... i always enjoy reading your posts
Should people be allowed to let their big dogs run loose at the Launch Ramp? I've had dogs most of my life and all my dogs were allowed to roam the neighborhood. When I was younger I didn't really think much about them being loose.
But these days I've tried to take up walking for exercise. When I'm walking I want to carry a side arm or a big can of bear spray on my belt as I've encountered some big dogs along the roads of my neighborhood. I'm always glad when I see that they are penned up or on a chain and not able to get to me.
So the other day when I pulled up to the launch ramp at Loon Pit's North end I observed two people with TWO BIG GREAT DANES playing on the launch ramp at the waters edge. I thought to my self, How will I launch my boat here safely? Well there was no way I was going to leave. I didn't have the nerve to tell them that it was illegal to let those dogs run loose at the launch ramp. Should not all dogs be on a leach when on public ground? I guess it depends on the country ordinances for your area.
Anyway I had my camera with me so I decided to take a few pictures. You don't see big dogs like these two Great Danes running around and playing very often so I grabbed my Canon Camera and walked over towards the older man and younger woman to ask if I could take some pictures of their dogs. That was my mistake!
I walked over from my truck and asked them if it was ok for me to take some pictures. They said ok. Sure that's fine.
Then I asked them what I thought was the most important question of the day. Are your dogs friendly? They said yes. So I approached closer and starting up a conversation with the two people. They seemed very nice and polite and I felt at ease and started to get my camera turned on and position myself to get some great shots of the dogs playing in the water. The man and woman were throwing out those rubber decoys into the water and the two dogs were swimming out a short ways to retrieve them.
Now in the past I've taken some good photos of dogs doing this type of work only they were well trained dogs and were labador retrievers. Well mannered and mild bread. Great Danes on the other hand are not. I found this out the hard way yesterday afternoon at 2 pm.
One of the dogs didn't like me at all. He barked a warning a few times and did some mock charges at me. That was my clue to slowly back out of there and get back into my truck. But it was too late for that. I decided that my best bet was to just stand my ground and make eye contact with the dog. Another mistake. Don't look directly at a mad big dog. They take it as a challenge. The dog was scare and turning agressive on me. I failed to diffuse the situation and could not remember how Cesar Malone would handle a situation like this. First off he would have something to put between him and the dog and second he would not have gotten that close to the dogs like I did.
One of the Great Danes was friendly and allowed me to pet her. I presume this one was a female as they are more gentle than male dogs most of the time. When without puppy to defend that is.
The lady who was baby sitting these dogs was trying to keep them away from me but without a leash she could not keep the one big dog at bay. You don't realize just how big a Great Dane is until they are standing next to you showing agressive behaviour. Barking and moving towards you.
Well to make a long story short one Dane finally bit me on the right forearm. He drew blood. I have two puncture marks where his cainines sunk into my skin and punctured my arm. They immediately put the two dogs away in the SUV.
Now I should not have approached these dogs in Hindsite. That's how you don't get bit. Approaching even with care is dangerous at times.
I'll try to learn from this experience.
I had a first aid kid in my boat and had to dig it out while taking to the couple who were very sorry and appoligitic. I felt bad for them too. They probably don't know the rules and were just trying to have fun and give the dogs some exercise. But there is a reason for rules and I wish that more people would now the rules about dogs at Bluegrass. You are only allowed to train your dogs on the North Side of Boonville New Harmony Rd. The rules are printed on the paper maps that they have available at the Bluegrass Pit's South Ramp just off Boonville New Harmony Rd at the Hunter Check in Station and the Main Information Bulletin board.
BTW: Yesterday Saturday the IDNR was out of these maps.
I was able to put some Providine (1% iodine eqivalent) on my wounds and went out to the other pit to do some sonar recordings and testings of my Humminbird SI unit.
When I went home I started a treatment of Antibiotics just in case the dog's bite put any bacteria into my blood stream.
I'll recover ok I hope. I did ask the woman and the man if the dogs had their shots. I found out that they were not the dogs owners either. No wonder they said their dogs were friendly. They were not actually thier dogs. They were owned by another guy (neighbor) and the woman was dog sitting those two big Great Danes for her neighbor who was out of town down in Miami getting ready to buy a new house.
I've got their names and phone numbers which they gave to me and if I die of an infection they can tell the owner about what happened yesterday.
But I'd really like to see people keep their dogs on a leash at the boat ramps. I'd be either going to an alternative ramp the next time this happenes or calling IDNR CO's to have them come and talk to the owners of any dogs running loose at the ramps. It's either do that or not go fishing. And the way I see it right now is that We the Fishermen and Hunters are the ones helping to pay for this F&W area. We pay extra taxes on our huning and fishing gear and fishing boats and motors that goes to IDNR to help pay for habitat improvement. This is part of the Johnson Dingle Act that was passed by Congress some years ago. All the money collected on guns sales and fishing rod sales is put aside to help pay for buying land for public use.
Now I know that often these lands are used for Multiple Uses. Like people bringing the bikes over to the Launch ramp and parking their cars in the parking lot while they go out and ride the nearby roads. These bike riders are part of the public that we help support with our purchase of hunting and fishing supplies and goods. So they benfit from our taxes that we pay. They don't have to pay this tax when they buy a car or bike. But if they hunt and fish too then they pay this tax just like us.
Now I use to rid bikes a lot when I was younger and realize that they need a place to park their vehicles. But there are only so many spots to park at Bluegrass and a boat and trailer needs room to park while fishing.
I wish that IDNR property mangers would have enough money to build more parking lots for everyone but they often don't get all the funds they need to do everything.
So we will just have to learn to share the space with everyone. Bluegrass is now a pretty popular place to be as more and more people discover that it's right in their back door.
Yesterday I saw quite a few people from Mexico have discovered the pits over at bluegrass. Some were even successful at fishing as I noticed them cleaning their fish right next to the water's edge at the South Launch Ramp at Loon Pit. And after the dog bite incident I went back to the North end of LOON pit to find a Spanish Speaking Woman who looked to be of Mexican Decent with her two daughters. They had their lawn chairs planted right on the launch ramp so they could catch a few turtles for supper. I wonder if they even took the time to purchase a fishing license.
And to top this all off the Game Warden was seen at Otter Pit diving up the gravel road on the West side of Loon Pit to Boonville New Harmony Road. He was in the area the entire time and didn't catch the people with the big dogs running loose at the North Launch Ramp at Loon Pit. Perhaps he had other things to do that were more important.
I have not reported this dog bite to anyone and hope I don't get an infection from the bite. Dog bites can turn septic if you are not careful and don't treat them right. But only 20% of dog bites give you an infection.
If you do get bit the best thing to do is to wach the wounds well with clean water and soap and put some antibiotic or Iodine on the would to kill any bacteria. Washing it out with a %3 soln of hydrogen peroxide is good too. I did all three. I wrapped the bit area with a 4 x 4 " sterile gauge pad and then wrapped it with some gause wrap to secure the bandage in place. And then put a couple strips of white silk tape to secure the gauze wrapping.
I never did get my pictures but here is one that I took one other time.
Note: the two labs in these pictures were friendly and well trained and were a lot of fun to take pictures of. My experience with these two labs was very different than the attempted photo shoot of the two Great Danes. Next time I'll say in my vehile and take pictures of the bigger dogs.
great story and read really enjoyed it except for the part where you were bitten... i always enjoy reading your posts
This is why I carry a .45 on me or in my boat everytime I go fishing. I've heard that there have been a number of break ins this year at bluegrass. It's a shame stupid people have to mess up other peoples fun.
your welcome moveon
My dog is on the ramp quite a bit but never off his leash. He goes from the truck to the boat and the boat to the truck.
Takes a real dingaling to let a dog you are watching loose anywhere.
The parking lots are so crowded these days with so many different types of people.
The other day one guy was parked next to my vehicle and boat/trailer and another guy approached me to talk. I noticed the first guy was standing near my boat and all it's my equipment . Fishing rods, sonar unit, Digital Maps etc were within two steps away from the guy by my boat. He backed up his truck next to mine which I thought was strange. Most people park head towards the lake so that they can see the water. He parked like he was in a hurry to get out of there. Only policemen and firemen normally park their trucks in that fashion.
I asked the second guy if the first guy was with him and I did that in a loud enough voice that the first guy heard me and saw me pointing at him. The first guy immediatley got back in his truck and peeled out fast spreading gravel all over the place. He did that on purpose too. I've seen others doing that at Loon Pit's North Parking lot while I was fishing in the little cove next to the parking lot. They peel out fast and throw gravel with their back wheels. I wish I had got his license plate number. I wonder if the two were working together and trying to steal stuff form unattended vehicles?
The second guy had walked across Boonville New Harmony Road to the Bluegrass parking lot to talk with me. Maybe he was not with the first guy but I wasn't going to take a chance. I was wearing my pistol on my belt that day and perhaps that's what scared the first guy off. I hope I don't see him again. We don't need idiots like that over there.
And yesterday evening I got to talk with one of the COs for a few minutes. He was doing some paper work at the time. This was at Loon Pit. He had been checking people for fishing licenses. I noticed him talking to several people who were parked with lawn chairs right in the middle of the concrete boat ramp on the Loon Pit North Launch ramp. After he talked with them and checked them they still maintained their postion on the launch ramp with the lawn chairs right smack dab in the middle of the ramp next to the water. If a boat wanted to lauch they would be run over unless they moved. Some guys dont' want to wait for them to move when they are ready to launch and they are short on time to fish.
However I don't think that the CO said anything to them about being in the middle of the launch ramp. It was later in the evening around 7:45 pm and it was going to be dark soon. And there were not boats in the parking lot ready to launch at that time.
I did ask the CO about dogs running loose in the Loon Parking lot and he said that it was ok to train dogs without them being on a leash. But when I reminded him that the rules say you must do that on the North Side of Boonville New Harmony Rd he agreeed but didn't elaborate any further as to my situation being bitten. So I'm sort of perplexted as to what the rules are now. I guess it's ever man and woman for themselves when it comes to using the launch ramps at Bluegrass.
I may call up to Sugar Ridge and talk to the Property Manager and ask him about the multiple use policy at this F&W area.
I know of one fisherman who was quite upset the other day while trying to launch his boat at Bluegrasses South launch ramp. He was complainging about the 5 or 6 kayakers who were using the ramp to launch and play around in the water right next to the ramp and inline with the ramp. I could tell that the fisherman was upset as we talked about this being a F&W area. He said outload where all could hear. "This is a fish and Wildlife Area"! I assume he was meaning that if you were not hunting or fishing you should not be there. I agree it's a F&W area but I'm not sure what the policy is on it's use. Perhaps it to be used by everyone and anyone that wants to go there. Well except for illegal uses like drugs and stealing stuff out of other people's vehicles or boats.
Every lake that I have fished in the last 50 years has had a problem with thieves from time to time. You get that almost everywhere you go out in public. I'd hope that they catch the buggers and put them in jail for awhile .
I'm careful to lock up my stuff inside the truck before I go out fishing. I also like to fish at Otter Pit as I can park my vehicle where I can see it while fishing from most of my spots. Otter Pit is only 90 acres in size and you can see the parking lot from most of the main parts of this lake.