If you are suddenly faced with a scenario where you may be bitten by a dog, it’s important to know how to react quickly. The best way to avoid the bite is to use your body language to show the dog that you are not a threat and that you want to leave its territory. Dogs are far more responsive to body language than people and will respond accordingly.
But how do you do this? Many people just react instinctively, which may include yelling or running. Both of these things will actually just make the dog act more aggressively. It can trigger the dog’s chase response and cause it to believe that you are a threat. You need to overcome this instinct and instead do the following.
Stay calm and quiet
Remain calm. Keep your hands at your sides and tucked in close to your body. If you talk to the dog, use a low and calming voice. Do not yell or try to intimidate it. The dog is going to respond to your energy level, so keeping that level low can help to avoid escalating things.
Try not to make eye contact
You don’t want to make eye contact, because dogs take that as a sign of aggression. Instead, watch the dog with your peripheral vision. It can also help to turn your head or your entire body to the side. This shows that you’re not acting aggressively, and it has the added benefit of making you a smaller profile for the dog.
Even if the dog is still barking at you at this point, hopefully it has stopped advancing. This is when you want to slowly retreat from the dog’s territory. Again, do not run, or the dog may give chase. Just try to slowly move away and, if possible, put something like a trashcan or a car between you and the dangerous dog.
You could still be bitten
Even if you do all of this, you could certainly be injured by a dangerous dog. It is not your fault. Be sure you know how to seek financial compensation from the dog’s owner.