I heard your call to ftl last night. Dogs are a big thing out in nowhere. I didn't really encounter them until i got to KY/TN and nobody had fences or leashes. Dogs just ran out after cars and bikes. It really scared me at first, especially going up hill and momentum dried up. You could take a foot of a peddle to kick a dog away but then you would run out of speed and have to dismount. I always carried a ulock on the handle bars and was good at getting it off quick. It was a good delivery guy robbery deterant and for tapping on cars when they forgot you were still next to them when they put the turn signal on in the city. I found that most dogs were just chasing out of boredom or base doggness. They would chase and bark but weren't threatening or would follow through with an attack if you stopped. It's kind of like the ghost in the castle in super mario, where if you turn around and face them they stop getting closer and don't know what to do.
my biggest scare and fear was log trucks. 2 loaded log trucks passing each other anywhere near you. not enough room left for a bike. some roads where this is common do not have shoulders. scary as hell.
safe travels man.