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Tips to help you avoid a dog bite

Dog attacks often happen very quickly, possibly with little warning. Maybe you're just out for a morning jog, for instance, listening to music on your headphones as you run along the side of the street. Suddenly, an off-leash dog charges out of a yard and comes right at you. Now what?

Nothing guarantees that the dog will not bite you. It happens to thousands of people every year. However, there are a few things you can do to avoid a bite. These tips may help:

  • Do not panic. You may just get the dog more agitated or make it think you are a threat.
  • Do not attempt to run. You cannot outrun the dog, and trying to just makes it see you as prey that it can chase.
  • Stay still and calm, facing the dog. You may talk to it in a calm voice.
  • Attempt to avoid eye contact. Dogs see this as a challenge or a confrontation.
  • Try some common commands. For instance, say things like "go home" or simply "no."
  • Attempt to put something in between you and the dog. If it lunges and you're holding a coat, for instance, thrust the coat forward and the dog may bite it and rip it away from you.
  • Walk away slowly, keeping an eye on the dog the entire time.

The key, as you can see, is to remain calm. That is hard in the face of such a dangerous situation. No matter what you do, if you get injured in the attack, make sure you know what options you have to seek financial compensation.

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