a dogís body language
fearful and aggressive animals are prone to bite. A fearful animal will hold its
tail tucked in, flatten its ears, may shake and growl or back away. An aggressive
dog has its ears up and forward, eyes looking directly at you, tail up and slowly
wagging or rigid, hair on its neck back and tail standing up. It is likely to
bark or growl with its teeth exposed.
to do when you canít avoid an encounter
Hold your arms by your side, hands in a fist, donít yell, donít say anything and
above all donít stare the dog in the eyes because this is interpreted as a threat.
If a dog knocks you down, roll into a ball, knees up, elbows tucked in and hands
in fists held against your ears. If the dog charges at you, donít scream, but
offer the dog an article, such as a bag, purse, article of clothing or other item
to tug on.
the dog actually grabs your arm or leg, push back into the animalís mouth as hard
as you can. The
dog will often let go and may even run away. On the other hand if you pull your
arm or leg away, the dogís teeth will tear into your flesh.
Do not tease dogs
behind fences; do not approach dogs tied up in yards or to trees, poles etc. Do
not approach a stray dog.
is safe behavior around a presumably friendly dog?
Donít pet a dog
belonging to someone else unless you are given permission to do so. When petting
a dog, stroke its sides and back. Head and ears are often very sensitive. Don't
nuzzle the dog. Donít tease it; donít play rough games and donít bother the animal
while it is sleeping, eating or chewing on something.
your animal to be safe around people
Take it to puppy school. Dogs learn best when praised for desirable behavior.
Harsh physical punishment, prong collars, shock collars and other painful training
methods may turn your dog into a fearful animal prone to bite in self defense.
Donít reward unwanted behavior, such as barking, growling etc. by petting. Petting
will only reinforce this behavior. If the dog becomes aggressive, immediately
remove it from the situation. Spaying or neutering your dog, particularly if male,
will usually ameliorate aggressiveness. HB
rogue dog that attacks without provocation or inflicts severe or even fatal bites
is unsafe in any situation and should be humanely destroyed. H.Breder,
Link to Humane Society's