Edwin DePrise grew up in Africa, Kenya to be exact, where his father was an animal conservationist. From an early age he discovered that the purpose of a Zebra’s black and white stripes is to confuse a predator like a lion for example that might be chasing it.
Forward to today and Edwin is a cyclist who noticed how dogs will often chase, even attack a cyclist. A dog is a predator and to the canine brain a cyclist gliding silently by might just as well be a deer in flight.
Edwin has developed this simple but ingenious little device that easily clips on the side of a cycling shoe that effectively confuses and deters any dog who gets close enough to bite a cyclist’s ankles.
It consists of a spinning disc inside a clear plastic casing. (See diagram left.)
The disc is divided into six segments colored alternatively black and white. A pair of these clip on the outside edge of either shoe.
The disc is pivoted slightly off center so the pedaling motion causes the disc to spin. This confuses the dog enough that it makes him hesitate or jump back as he goes to bite.
The result is the dog misses his mark and usually ends up getting his nose clipped by the spinning spokes of the rear wheel.
This actually caused Edwin some problems when he was testing the device. He found once the dog had had his nose rapped in such a way it was reluctant to chase again, rendering the dog useless for further testing.
This problem was overcome by fitting the test bike with a solid aero disc wheel on the rear. Some engineer's blue marking dye smeared on the sides of the disc wheel showed up on the dog’s nose, and a hit was recorded.
The idea is still under development. One problem has arisen, namely the left disc spins in a counter-clockwise direction and is effective 91% of times tested; whereas the disc on the right shoe spins clockwise and is effective only 47% of the time. The reason for this is not quite clear.
One simple low-tech solution Edwin is considering is a little red knob in the center of the right side disc so a cyclist could manually spin the disc in a counter-clockwise direction, should a dog attack occur.
The device is not yet on the market; Edwin is currently shopping the idea to several manufactures. He expects the price to be very reasonable. He does not have a brand name yet; he refers to it as a Canine Repellent Ankle Protector (CRAP)
Go to http://www.crap.com/ for more info