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I've had similar experiences. If I can, I get in front of my dog and stop poorly behaving dogs from approaching us. That could be just interposing yourself and yelling loudly at the other dog, or something more dramatic. (Obviously this is possible only if you can see the other dog coming from a distance away.)

My dog seems to view this as me protecting her, and she trusts me as a consequence. Even if you decide to do something different, it's important to let your dog know that he/she is not let to fend for him/herself. You're not just a post that the leash is attached to. You will take appropriate actions to make sure everyone is safe.
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