Everything is always ok until its not.
Most places we stay have security gates, and are pretty far off the main roads. We still keep our door locked more often than not but we also leave stuff outside (chairs, firepit, etc.). If I walk the dog by myself, I make sure someone knows I am leaving, which path I am taking and how long I plan to be. I always take my phone (gotta get my steps in). If I am running late, I text and let them know when I will be back.
I don't walk at night, so I haven't ever really worried about getting got by someone or something. You know – because nothing bad happens during the day :P). The more we have travelled, the less safe I feel.
Stalker Deer, Wild Pigs, Creepy Rabbits, Two-legged Freaks
A couple of places (Medina Lake, Bay Landing and Colorado River) we have stayed have very friendly deer herds. Like sneak up behind you and when you turn, they are less than 5 feet away. HELLO. People feed them by hand, so they don't know any better, but we are too worried about the diseases they carry (seriously – Google it) to engage in such careless activities. Anyway, it gives you quite a jolt when they sneak up on you and then they aren't afraid of you.
I was on a trail a couple of weeks ago and a herd of wild pigs ran/stampeded across it about 20 yards ahead of me and Bailey. There's always something scurrying in the underbrush and every once in awhile, whatever it is, raises Bailey's hackles so we leave that area quickly.
And even though we are in gated communities, we still don't know who's behind the gate with us. Most of the people we have met have been awesome and amazing. BUT. There have been some along that have raised my hackles and I wouldn't want to be left alone or unprotected when they are near. It was after one of those encounters that I came back to the RV and told Boyd I wanted to get a taser.
Long Story Short
On path or off, I feel vulnerable sometimes. While Bailey is the 4-legged love of my life, I recognize that she is not likely to dissuade another animal (of any sort) from attacking me for very long. Boyd and I talked through protection options that would work for me when I am walking the dog. We agreed the taser was a good option for now. It's small and discrete. I can hold it in my hand and still manage the leash. Its ready to go when I hit the trigger. Downside? I have to be close, but I figure if something is attacking, its likely going to be close anyway.