What Would You Do if You were Attacked by a Dog?

On New Years Day 2007 five-year-old Ellie Lawrenson was killed by a pit bull terrier. Strong, terrier type dogs are increasingly the latest fashion item of young men and dog fights even seem to be on the rise. But what can you do when you are confronted by a dangerous dog?

Brutal dog attacks, seemingly unprovoked, have left people wondering how to protect themselves. Particularly worrying is some dogs’ “predatory” aggression, which means they could strike without any warning whatsoever.

What Would You Do if You were Attacked by a Dog?

Knowing what to do in such circumstances could save your life, and experts say that there a few simple things you can do to help defuse the situation.

If you think a dog is going to attack you, do not run. Dogs are genetically programmed to chase down prey, and even if they weren’t, you cannot outrun a dog. Nor is it a good idea to scream, which would only increase the anxiousness of the dog. Instead it is best to stay as calm as possible, keep your arms close to your body and move away slowly, without any sudden movements, keeping your eyes on the dog but avoiding eye contact, which dogs perceive as a challenge.

A spokesman for the RSPCA discussed the importance of studying a dog’s reaction to you: “If it stiffens up, holds its tail high, snarls and stares at you then be on your guard. If it shows its teeth it may be safest to go no further, but don’t turn and run – back away slowly.”

However, if an attack is unavoidable and seems imminent try to place something between you and the dog. Anything could lessen the impact of an attack.

During an attack it is always best to try and stay on your feet, which will protect your face and neck. But in the event you are knocked over, try and curl into a ball, placing your hands over the back of your neck.

If you do get bitten by a dog, do not to pull your arm away as the dog’s teeth will tear your flesh and it is likely that will cause more damage than the bite itself.

Although this knowledge may protect you from severe injury, it is not possible to prevent dog attacks. If you or a family member is a victim of a dog attack, Macks Solicitors can give you expert advice on making a claim.


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