It goes without saying, but you should never provoke an animal attack. Animals don’t usually attack humans unless they feel threatened or if their territory is crossed (slowly back away from the chew toy). If a dog does decide to attack, here are a few tips that could help you defend yourself against that advancing canine.

1.) If attacked, always protect your face, chest and throat. 

2.) Protect your fingers by keeping your hands in a fist.

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3.) If an attack seems likely and you have something on you like a jacket, a cap or even a stick, you can “bait” the dog into biting the object instead of yourself. If the dog does bite the object, it will think it has a part of you—just let go of it and cautiously retreat from the area.

4.) If you can’t avoid getting bitten, your forearm or shin is “safer” (relatively speaking), while a bite on the thigh might lead to a fatal femoral artery wound.

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5.) If bitten, do not pull away, as it only creates more damage. You actually want the dog to latch on at that point to avoid receiving more bites.

6.) If the dog does latch on, try to lift the dog off the ground by its hind legs. Being dominated in that manner usually induces submissive behavior. 

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7.) Apply first aid to the wound and determine if the dog has signs of rabies, and treat accordingly. Seek further medical help as soon as you can.


This article was originally published in BALLISTIC™ Summer 2015 magazine. Print Subscriptions are available here.

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