The Velo-Dog was a pocket revolver originally created in France by Charles-François Galand in the late 19th century as a defense for cyclists against dog attacks. The name is a portmanteau of "velocipede" and "dog".
Surviving examples vary considerably in appearance, but have certain features in common. The hammer is shrouded to avoid its snagging on clothing, so the weapon is double action only. All have short barrels and originally fired the 5.75 mm (.22 calibre) Velo-dog cartridge, although many of the Velo-Dogs produced after 1900 accepted .22 LR or .25 ACP rounds. Another feature on many late models Velo-Dogs is the lack of a trigger guard, and a trigger that folds into the body of the weapon when not in use. For the more humane, there were cartridges loaded with cayenne pepper or dust.
The original revolver uses the 5.75mm Velo-dog cartridge, a centrefire 5.5 mm (nominally 5.75) cartridge slightly less powerful than the 22 Long Rifle, using a jacketed bullet. The cartridge is, or was until very recently, still made by Fiocchi.
Because of the low energy of the round, a suicide case was recorded where a woman shot herself twice in the temple with a .25 (6.35 mm) Velo-dog revolver before succumbing.
In popular culture
- A Velo-dog makes a minor appearance as an assassin's concealable pistol in the novel The Death of Achilles, one of Boris Akunin's Erast Fandorin series.
- And also in the novel Hot Springs, one of Stephen Hunter series.
- Red Jacket Firearms repaired a Velo-dog in the TV-series Sons of Guns.
- Barnes, Frank C. (Ken Warner, Editor) 1989. Cartridges of the World, 6th Edition. DBI Books, Inc. Northbrook, Illinois. p. 218. ISBN 0-87349-033-9.
- Ian Hogg, John Weeks, John Walter (2004). Pistols of the World. Krause Publications. p. 164. ISBN 978-0-87349-460-1.
- Ian Hogg, John Weeks, John Walter (2004). Pistols of the World. Krause Publications. p. 136. ISBN 978-0-87349-460-1.
- Barnes. Cartridges of the World (tenth ed.). p. 300.
- Hayashi, T.; Gapert, R.; Tsokos, M.; Hartwig, S. (2012). "Suicide with two shots to the head using a rare 'Velo-Dog' pocket revolver". Forensic Science, Medicine, and Pathology 9 (2): 265. doi:10.1007/s12024-012-9360-z.
- Rummel, James R. "Doggin' the Velo". Archived from the original on September 17, 2008.
- "5,75x30 R/5.5 Velo-Dog/5.6 Velodog/5.6x29.5 Velodog/5.8 Velo Dog/6 mm Velodog/.225 Velodog/5.5 mm Nº 8/GR 646/SAA 0410/ECRA-ECDV 06 029 CBC 010".(Spanish)
- "French Velo-Dog Revolver".[dead link]
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