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There were many questions in this site about slaying dragons, butchering dragons, but never one about restraining them. Poor Gyvaris managed to avoid all those fates but the last.

Gyvaris is a dragon, currently in the "service" of not St. Martha and not St. George. Having been nearly killed and unintentionally publically humiliated by, then forced to serve them, Gyvaris is unstable.

Stories of dragons razing entire cities by themselves is just unsubstantiated dwarven propaganda (they'd blame everything from missing homework to the Armenian Genocide on dragons if they could get away with it). Regardless Gyvaris' hissy fits could still range anywhere from property damage to burning children.

That is problematic because Gyv is supposed to be a layer of defense for George's village and that limits restrainment methods. It's certain though that you'd want to shut him down IMMEDIATELLY if things are going south.

Dragons are roughly the same size as a horse and as intelligent as humans. Their natural weapons are their jaws, claws and a spade at the end of their tail. They're slim and athletic with enough strength to overpower a human but not bigger animals (i.e: bears). Their breath weapon is basically an explosive charge (think of thermobaric grenades), the shot limit is 5. Under normal condition, the dragon can regain 1 shot per hour.

How could a dragon be restrained in a fast, reliable way to prevent him from damaging others or himself when throwing a tantrum?

The tech-level is late-medieval.
Dragons can fly but we're assuming they choose not to when in a fit.
This question is about restraining dragons, not killing them, if they disobey orders.

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    $\begingroup$ The question's title sounds like it belongs in a certain movie franchise... xD $\endgroup$ – Qami Sep 6 at 21:01
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    $\begingroup$ It's not clear from your post if this is one of the "fry everything with my breath" type dragons or just some flying reptile that likes sleeping on gold. You specifically omit the flame from your detailed description of your dragons, so I wonder if they do flame. It makes a considerable difference to how you restrain something if it's a flying flame thrower the size of a large tank. Which also raises the question - how can they be harmed ? If you can capture a dragon presumably there is some weapon to do that, so can that be adapted to normal restraint ? $\endgroup$ – StephenG Sep 6 at 21:08
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    $\begingroup$ Data point: You do not own a dragon - even if you captured it. A close enough analogy is a cat. A dragon tolerates you saying that you own it. It may appear somewhata domesticated, just as a cat may. After I stroked "my" drag... er cat for a while yesterday it turned it's head to channel my fingers into its mouth and held them between its teeth with enough not-quite-skin-piercing force to ensure that it knew I knew and I knew it knew what the relationship was. Dragons are not always as skilled as cats at determining where the warning/worse boundaries lie. $\endgroup$ – Russell McMahon Sep 7 at 7:57
  • $\begingroup$ Side note: using the Armenian genocide in a joke is insensitive at best. The atrocities were similar to the holocaust but the Turkish government is actively trying to cover it up. $\endgroup$ – workoverflow Sep 7 at 8:31
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    $\begingroup$ @workoverflow That's why I'm giving it more exposure. $\endgroup$ – Mephistopheles Sep 7 at 10:03
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Hood.

eagle in hood

source

Lots of animals calm down when they see nothing but black. Birds of prey are the best known and probably closest to a dragon. But it works for cats (wild and domestic) and horses that I know of. I feel like I have seen nature show where captured creatures (?raccoons) have a breatheable bag put over their heads, and they become more mellow.

Your dragon has a hood, or blinders. His rider flips it on (or down). When he sees only the flat black, the stuff that was getting him riled up disappears from his perspective. It is like night came early. Night time is time to chill out. And that is what he does.

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    $\begingroup$ These are supposed to as intelligent as humans, and I don't know about you, but stuffing a hood over my head against my will does not sound like something that would calm me down - quite the contrary. $\endgroup$ – StephenG Sep 7 at 4:51
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    $\begingroup$ @StephenG That's because primates react differently to sudden darkness, and not because we are very intelligent. Unlike a bird, the dragon might know that a blinder is meant to calm it down (against its will), but that doesn't mean that its behavioral psychology might not calm them down anyway. If I was captured, I would not be very calm. If my kidnappers played classical music to calm me down, I would know that they're trying to calm me down against my will, but it would still do its job better than playing, say, death metal. $\endgroup$ – forest Sep 7 at 10:49
  • $\begingroup$ @forest It's intelligent and it's angry and suddenly someone who is keeping them in captivity and controlling them (the thing they're angry about !) puts a hood over them to control them. By what chain of reasoning would these intelligent creatures not become even more angry at this ? "Oh my captors want me to calm down so I will" is about as rational as "The intelligent dragon we've made a slave of won't be angry at us.". $\endgroup$ – StephenG Sep 7 at 16:03
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    $\begingroup$ @StephenG - my idea was by way of analogy. But if the dragon is intelligent in the same way as a human, it might not feel good for it to be throwing a tantrum. The fact that a human has lost control of his or her emotions does not mean that is pleasurable or that this is a desirable situation; in fact much the opposite. Persons of all kinds who find themselves overwhelmed by anger or fear often welcome efforts by others to get them feeling calm and in control. $\endgroup$ – Willk Sep 7 at 16:22
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    $\begingroup$ @StephenG It's about behavior, not rationality. $\endgroup$ – forest Sep 8 at 0:31
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Oh no, you can't restrain a dragon, you have to train your dragon.

Given that over the last few years there has been a significant series of documentaries made explaining in detail How to train your dragon I shan't go into specific detail here, but we must go over the reasons.

Like any large or dangerous animal, if untrained it can be a danger to itself and those around it. Consider large dogs for example, an untrained large dog is a significant risk, just by virtue of the damage it could do by running off with a small child being dragged along behind. No tempter tantrum, no malice, just a lack of training. One could say the same of a bull, that rope on the ring through its nose is really just a hint, if that bill threw a tantrum the rope will not make much difference at all. Hence training is critical, always positive reinforcement not punishment.

Or use an adamantium choke chain.

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"They're slim and athletic with enough strength to overpower a human but not bigger animals (i.e: bears)."

Cages. Bears are stronger and can't escape cages, sl your dragon would be properly constrained in one.

Also, feed him opioids so as to cause an addiction. Once the dragon is done performing whatever defense tasks here and there, he'll know to go back to his cage for his next fix.

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    $\begingroup$ That's a recipe for disaster. $\endgroup$ – Mephistopheles Sep 6 at 19:15
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    $\begingroup$ @Mephistopheles forcing a dangerous and intelligent and destructive creature into potentially lethal combat for your benefit, having "publically humiliated them" is already sufficiently unpleasant and stupid that using narcotic addiction as a means of control is merely a minor detail on the whole ill-advised plan. $\endgroup$ – Starfish Prime Sep 6 at 19:34
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    $\begingroup$ Alcohol would probably work just as well, except for the tiny flammability issue $\endgroup$ – nzaman Sep 6 at 19:36
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    $\begingroup$ @Mephistopheles " you don't want an extra depressed mess to protect your assets." People who work for a minimum wage are usually not too happy about it too, yet they don't (usually) [redacted] up their bosses' assets. $\endgroup$ – Renan Sep 6 at 19:45
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    $\begingroup$ @Mephistopheles " Low-wage workers aren't expected to fight off minecraft zombies, wights or whatever the DM has came up with." Tell that to any latin american cop, that has to fight cartels armed with AK47, G3 and RPK, while being paid bad wages. $\endgroup$ – Geronimo Sep 7 at 14:36
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Data point - as comments may vanish.

You do not own a dragon - even if you captured it.
A close enough analogy is a cat.
However, do not suppose that the analogy is close enough to risk yourself to it.

A dragon tolerates you saying that you own it.
It may appear somewhat domesticated, just as a cat may.

After I stroked "my" drag... er cat for a while yesterday it turned it's head to channel my fingers into its mouth and held them between its teeth with enough not-quite-skin-piercing force to ensure that it knew I knew and I knew it knew what the relationship was. Dragons are not always as skilled as cats at determining where the warning/worse boundaries lie.

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If they choose not to fly in fits, then I could see them being knocked out by anyone who can surprise them or is fast enough. Maybe a hit to the windpipe to stop the flame breath and a hit to the noggin to knock it out. Maybe someone more daring could choke out the dragon to knock it out.

From there, the wings need to be tied and the muzzle can be tied shut to prevent fire and biting while still letting it speak a little. From there, the dragon could be restrained like any big person. Maybe with rope serving as makeshift handcuffs or maybe chains and shakles would fit the setting better.

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You could have him wear an elaborate harness with mounting points for pulleys, that extends over his wings. Wind ropes through these pulleys and all you have to do is assign some villagers to be handlers, and if things go south pull the ropes HARD. The dragon is wrapped up tight and can easily be released when he calms down.

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    $\begingroup$ I'm pretty sure bondage does not calm most creatures down... $\endgroup$ – forest Sep 7 at 10:57
  • $\begingroup$ Well once he’s all tied up you can drug him pretty easy, and at least you know he won’t wreak havoc of any sort $\endgroup$ – Comrade Mango Sep 7 at 15:25

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