Turndial, let me see if I can explain this to you.
Here in the US, generally the use of deadly force is reviewed from the point of view of a reasonable person in the shoes of the person that used the deadly force.
If a rider is mounted on a horse that is terrified of your barking dog and the horse's actions are such that they place the rider in a position that he starts to fear death OR severe injury, he becomes justified in using deadly force to stop whatever it is that is generating that situation.
I think it's beyond argument that being on top of a horse that's losing his mind would place any reasonable person in fear of severe injury.
It matters not why your dog barks at horses. It only matters the effect it has on horses.
Now this is an extreme example. Most horses don't lose their mind because a dog is barking at them in the distance.
We can play what ifs till the cows come home. But in the end, the rider's fear of death or severe injury at the moment the trigger was pulled, and the circumstances that led to that point, is what the prosecutors will consider when reviewing the case.
The reasons why the dog scares the horse will be irrelevant.
And as I have already showed, my state has already codified the lawfulness of killing a dog that is worrying or harassing livestock. Most other American states have similar laws.
The bottom line is this: the onus to prevent these conflicts from happening rest ENTIRELY on the shoulders of dog owners. Whether you find that fair or unfair is not really relevant.
Last edited by mildot; 02-21-2012 at 05:36 PM.