Are you are afraid of dogs, like me? Then, it can be challenging to travel to several countries. Many places, stray dogs are everywhere. Furthermore, they scare tourists.
When I was around 10 years old, I was bitten by the neighbour dog. I was going to visit my friend. Their dog was laying outside the door, and while reaching the doorbell he attacked me and bite me in my face.
Due to this, I am afraid of dogs.
This fear, have brought problems for me while travelling to many countries. Ireland, Nigeria, India, Uganda, Sri Lanka, is just some of the countries I had to deal with stray dogs running around everywhere.
Now living in Cochabamba, Bolivia. The city of dogs! Literally, in Cochabamba there are more stray dogs than I have seen anywhere in the world. A city where, everyone wants to own dogs, but few take the responsibility of them. So they often end up on the street.
That being said, after two years of living in the city, despite my fear, I have learned to deal with it. I have noticed that most of the stray dogs do not bother me. For the few once that do and are aggressive, I have observed how the locals deal with them, and what to do in a non-violent.
Staying calm and walk away is the best way to deal with aggressive stray dogs. Do not run. However, this is not as easy for someone that is afraid, like me. So I usually ask locals for help. Because the dogs usually know them and how to deal with them. A few times, I had to feign picking up rocks. For some reason, this is a gesture that dogs all around the world have learned to recognize as a source of impending pain, which unfortunately says a lot about the abuse they often receive. If you do so, they the dog will usually run away or clam down. But many times, I had to take another route, or hide and wait until the dogs were gone.
Don’t get me wrong. I love dogs. I love them so much that I bought my own. James (in the picture below), a handsome little fellow.
That being said, the stray dogs still scare me. And I am not the only traveler that are scared by them.
In Taj Mahal, aggressive dogs have bitten several tourist, and scared even more. But it is not in India where tourists run away from aggressive stray dogs.
One close friend of mine was in Thailand. She told me that there were several of dogs on the beach resort where she was staying. However, one morning when they woke up, they found all the dogs lying dead on the beach. Everywhere. They were sure the people the owners of the hotel had given them something in the food that had killed them all. So that they would not scared and bothered the tourists, anymore.
If this was the right way to deal with the stray dogs that bothered tourists can be discussed. For me, it sounds horrible. At the same time, I have seen how much most of the stray dogs around the world struggle and the bad conditions they live and are in. It is a sad sight. That being said, some of them are actually dangerous and attack people and have rabies. But at the same time, we as tourists have a responsibility to adapt them, right?
What do you think is the solution for the street dogs that scares tourists?