Protecting Yourself from a Dog Attack
As dog attack attorneys, we have seen how devastating dog bites can be. They can leave victims with permanent bodily injuries as well as significant emotional trauma. And, unfortunately, some dog attacks, while rare, can kill the victim. The good news is, like people, 99.9 percent of dogs are good and rarely attack. Usually, when they do, it is because they feel threatened, or they feel you are encroaching on their territory. However, in most cases, dogs that do attack frequently have a history of threatening behavior, and their owner has not set up sufficient parameters to prevent an attack. That is to say, that when an aggressive dog bites and attacks another person, it is not a surprise given its history. So, how do you protect yourself from a dog attack? We have some tips to help keep you safe from an attacking dog.
Carry a Spray Bottle
If you are walking or jogging, and know you will be going near a house where there is an aggressive dog, carry a water or spray bottle. You should also do this if just out on a hike or a trail, as you never know if you will come across a dog that could be a threat. If the dog is threatening, you can spray the dog with water. This usually will help back the dog down, plus it is not harmful. But, it can be effective at repelling the dog and keeping you safe.
Use Firm Commands
Sometimes dogs simply need to hear an authoritative voice. If a dog seems to be aggressive toward you, you can use a firm voice to tell them “No” or “Go”. As animals, they do respond to authority, and if they sense you carry more “Alpha” than they do, they will sometimes back down from a potential fight.
Take a Whistle
If you are out walking, bring along a whistle. Trainers, for many years, have used whistles to get dogs’ attention, and it is a proven technique to calm dogs before they get out of control.
Dogs love treats, and they can be a great way to distract them. A tasty treat may make the attacking dog forget why they leaped the fence to go after you.
Roll Into A Ball
If the above tips do not prevent an attack, the best defense if the dog does attack you is to roll into a ball. Cross your arms over your face and lay still. Try to avoid thrashing at the dog, as it will only encourage them to bite harder. After all, the dog thinks you are prey, so if you keep moving, or even try to run away, it will likely keep coming after you.
What NOT To Do if Attacked By a Dog
If you are approached by a dog that is about to attack, there are some things you should not do:
- Don’t kick as this can encourage a harder bite
- Don’t use pepper spray as the dog will probably not feel it, and you are likely to get it on you instead, making it harder to defend yourself
- Don’t scream and run away as the dog, again, thinks of you as prey and will likely run after you
- Don’t stick out your fingers as, depending on the dog; they can get amputated
- Don’t pull away if the dog is latched onto you. This sounds counter-intuitive, but pulling away will encourage the dog to latch on harder, causing more severe wounds.
Need Dog Bite Help?
If you have been attacked by a dog and injured, we can help. We are experienced dog bite attorneys who have seen countless dog bite cases. We offer free, no-obligation consultations and work on a contingency basis. This means you don’t pay, and we take a small portion of your winnings. You have nothing to lose by contacting our personal injury attorneys. Call 303-372-6145 or schedule a free consultation.