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Focus on Dog Bites: What to do if Approached by an Aggressive Dog

In previous posts, we've discussed questions around why dogs bite, which breeds are most likely to bite and how to prevent dog bites. In regards to the latter, while there are many things that you can do to prevent dog bites, there is always the chance that you will encounter a dog that is aggressive.

Remember, there is no specific breed that is more aggressive than any other. Rather, there are breeds who are more dangerous, if aggressive, by virtue of their size. Still, any dog may act aggressively, given the right circumstances.

If you are confronted by an aggressive dog, there are several things that you can do to protect yourself from serious harm. The most important, and always the hardest, is to stay calm. The biggest mistake you can make is to turn and run. While an understandable response to a dangerous situation, you must remember that you will not be able to outrun the animal.

And chances are good that, if you run, the dog will pursue.

Other things you should refrain from are making eye contact with the dog or smiling at it. These actions could be perceived as a challenge and instigate a dog attack. If you speak at all, use a calm and even voice. Yelling at the dog will further agitate the animal rather than scare it away.

What to do if the dog attacks

If the dog attacks and knocks you to the ground, curl up in a ball and cover your head. Also, make sure to keep your fists clenched, so as to present fewer appendages that might be bitten.

If the dog actually bites you, do not pull away. This will be awful and is anyone's last inclination, but pulling away can further excite the dog.

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