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How to Deal with a Dog Attack

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In May 2019, a 67-year-old man shot his neighbor’s dog in self-defense one Sunday afternoon after the pit bull attacked him outside of his house in Manchester, New Hampshire.

The victim, Carlos R. told police he had left his home at about 1 p.m. to take his small dog on a walk when he saw a “large aggressive dog” come running out of a house.

While trying to protect his own dog, Carlos was bitten on his right arm and pulled to the ground by the pit bull.

According to police, the pit bull let go of the victim’s arm and as he was trying to get away and back on his feet to walk away, the pit bull came running back at him full speed.

Carlos stated he was carrying a handgun on him and that he shot the pit bull out of fear of being attacked again.

Carlos was treated for non life-threatening injuries at a local hospital and the pit bull was transported to a local veterinary hospital for treatment of a gunshot wound.

Just like with another human being, if your life is in imminent danger, you need to be prepared to defend yourself and your loved ones.

The reality is, how many times in just the past year have you heard stories of dog owners being mauled to death by their own dogs?

If it can happen to the dog’s owners, then it can happen to innocent people who are simply walking their own dog or riding bikes with their kids.

My point is, dog bites happen all the time, in fact, dog-related claims account for around one-third of personal liability insurance claims, according to the Insurance Information Institute.

Dog claims aren’t just frequent, but they’re expensive too, as the average claim runs about $30,000.

Considering how common dog bites are I want to share with you a few tips if a dog is ever acting aggressively towards you.

Stay calm. The saying, “dogs can sense if you are scared” is 100% accurate. Dogs will become more confident when they see that their prey is scared or intimidated.

If a dog runs up to you and you don’t act scared the dog may think you are more of a danger to them. In other words, this is where the alpha nature of a dog is critical, meaning you want to appear stronger than the dog.

You should also talk to the dog confidently. For instance, in a firm voice tell the dog to “Go home,” or “Go away.” (Yes, I realize this is easier said than done.)

Never run from a dog. You will not outrun a dog. Period. Remember, dogs share the same lineage as wolves and even your sweet puppy has a natural prey drive.

Basically, when you run the dog’s instinct will be to chase after you. If you are running or riding a bike when a dog approaches you, stop what you are doing and stand tall but still.

Avoid eye contact. Making direct eye contact with a dog may be perceived as a challenge by the dog. While you want to pay attention to what the dog is focusing on with it’s eyes, you shouldn’t stare directly back at the dog.

In addition, if you are holding a water bottle that the dog is focused on, consider throwing the bottle in the opposite direction that you want to go.

The dog may feel threatened by a specific object that you are holding and they may simply chase that object.

Always fight back. If a dog attacks, it will most likely bite the closest body part such as your arm or butt if you are turned away. Once a dog attacks, you have no choice but to fight back.

The dog won’t stop until it decides the pain it’s feeling isn’t worth biting you. What I mean is, you want to hit the dog in the head such as the nose, throat, eyes or top of the head.

If you are like me and always carry a tactical pen, this would be a situation where I would definitely use my tactical pen to stop the attack.

According to the Center For Disease Control (CDC), approximately 4.7 million dog bites occur in the U.S. each year and 800,000 of those bites result in medical care.

The U.S. population is about 325.7 million people. That means a dog bites 1 out of every 69 people.

No matter how friendly a dog may appear, you should always keep these tips in mind in the event that a dog attacks you or a loved one.

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