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quarta-feira, 27 de junho de 2018

Dog attack what to do

There are about 4.5 million dog bites every year in the U.S., according to the CDC. Nearly one in every five of those bites becomes infected (around 900,000), and between 1999 and 2007, dogs were the cause of 250 deaths. If you don’t count venomous insects, man’s best friend is one of the deadliest animals in the U.S.

A majority of dog attacks are caused by people’s pets that have either gotten loose or weren’t properly leashed to begin with, but some attacks are by stray or feral dogs.
Feral dogs, sometimes referred to as wild dogs or street dogs, are free-ranging, non-domesticated animals that are not and never were somebody’s pet. They’re usually afraid of people, but can be far more dangerous than a lost or abandoned pet (stray) if they’re cornered, starving, or infected with rabies. According to the Internet Center for Wildlife Damage Management, feral dogs usually form communities that travel together, and they often have rendezvous sites like wolves. They tend to scavenge for food, like garbage and roadkill, around human populations, but they’ve been known to hunt in packs as well. When feral dogs go hunting, it’s usually for livestock, neighborhood pets, and, occasionally, people who are in the wrong place at the wrong time. And don’t think feral dogs are something you’ll only find in rural areas. Feral dog packs can be found in almost any city, from Detroit to Dallas, where a woman was recently mauled and bitten over 100 times in the middle of the street.

f you encounter a single dog you’re not familiar with, be it a stray, feral, or a dog you’re sure is somebody’s pet, the CDC recommends you avoid it—even if it seems like it’s lost or needs help. This goes double for dogs that are sleeping, eating, or caring for puppies. Even if it’s obvious the dog is someone’s pet, an unleashed dog can be dangerous, especially for children. If an unfamiliar dog approaches you, do not run, panic, or make loud noises. Stay motionless, keeping the side of your body facing the dog while avoiding direct eye contact. Say things like “No” or “Go Home” in a deep, firm voice, and slowly raise your hands to cover your neck while keeping your elbows in. Now wait for the dog to leave or begin to slowly back away.

If the dog charges you, it’s still important to stand as still as possible. As Dr. Sofia Yin, DVM, MS, explains, dogs charge for one of two reasons: either because they are scared and know offense is their best defense, or because something you or another person in the vicinity did something that excited them and made them think they’re being rewarded. People’s pets can get caught in a self-reinforced feedback loop where they “play” a little too hard and don’t know any better. If you yell and move around frantically, the dog will think you’re playing along and won’t stop.

If the dog is clearly being aggressive, not playing (growling, snarling, barking), or obviously feral (dirty, no collar, not reacting to commands), Yin recommends you try and put something between you and the animal. A backpack, purse, jacket, or even a shoe can make for a great shield. Look at the dogs’ body language so you can prepare to block attacks. Tension in the body, raised hackles (the hair along the dog’s back), and ears that are flat against their head are things to watch for. Don’t try to hit the dog with the item, though, as this can make the dog even more aggressive. Just try to back away slowly. If the dog knocks you down, curl into a ball with your head tucked, make fists with your hands to protect your fingers, and use your hands and arms to cover your ears and neck.