I have to agree with you about an empty chamber. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" /> How long does it take to chamber a round? <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif" alt="" /> Just long enough to see that the wolf jumping you is actually your buddies dog, <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif" alt="" /> or your buddy. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" />

Since I carry a single action, I have to cock the hammer first - the time it takes to do that is enough. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" /> In most animal defense encounters they won't really ambush you. The two lions I met up with were very cautious in their approach - I knew they were there long enough to have reacted in a very offensive screaming manner as I bared my teeth and waved my arms. <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" /> For a lion, just being seen is a bad thing as far as they're concerned. Obsenities work as well on them as they do on house cats. Another thing you can do is sniff really loudly a few times to make the animal think you are sizing up its smell, this scares them, and cats can hear this sound through a door on a noisey afternoon. Act like a hunter and animals will avoid you.
Jim <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />
These are my own opinions based on wisdom earned through many wrong decisions. Your mileage may vary.