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Early model Velo-Dog with trigger guard

The Velo-Dog (also known as a Revolver de Poche[1]) was a pocket revolver originally created in France by René Galand, son of Charles-François Galand in the late 19th century as a defense for cyclists against dog attacks.[2] The name is a compound word composed of "velocipede" and "dog".

An early 20th century Velo-Dog made by HDH (model name: Lincoln-Bossu).[3]

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,[4] or which had bullets made from wax, wood or cork.[1]

The original revolver uses the Galand company's proprietary 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.[5]

A 5.75mm Velo-Dog cartridge

Despite 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.[6]

In popular culture[edit]

See also[edit]


  • Akunin, =Boris (2006). The Death of Achilles: A Novel. Translated by Andrew Bromfield. Random House. ISBN 0812968808.
  • Barnes, Frank C. (1989). Warner, Ken (ed.). Cartridges of the World (6th ed.). Northbrook, Illinois: DBI Books, Inc. ISBN 0-87349-033-9.
  • Barnes, Frank C. (2003). Skinner, Stan (ed.). Cartridges of the World (10th ed.). Krause Publications. ISBN 9780873496056.
  • Eger, Chris (11 Oct 2012). "Velo Dog Revolver: Snubby snoopy sniper". Retrieved 11 May 2015.
  • 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.
  • Hogg, Ian; Weeks, John; Walter, John (2004). Pistols of the World. Krause Publications. ISBN 978-0-87349-460-1.

External links[edit]