One more thing...I encounter LOTS of dogs...of all shapes and sizes. Some are penned or leashed but there are plenty of loose dogs who will rush at you. So make sure your horse will be ok with that. I have had a couple of close encounters...although I believe 99% of dogs are friendly I have actually had one attack my horse once. Thank heavens we got out of there quickly and no one (canine or equine) was seriously hurt. My horse was a LIFESAVER, despite the scary situation he never panicked. I ended up having to jump from his back and chase the dog away.
I also had two dogs rush me (last week) like they were going to attack (no barking) but they ended up chickening out when my mustang turned and postured...(as if he was going to take them on himself lol) And just yesterday we had a JRT take off out of someone's yard and after us - straight across a busy road. A car came flying over the hill at that point and although we were well off the road the dog wasn't and we had to shout and wave at the driver to stop. The dog completely ignored his owner (who was attempting to retrieve him)...we had to break away by galloping in the opposite direction before he finally turned back and went home.