Dogs don’t usually attack without probable cause. However, if in case they do, their dog bites can be pretty bad to the point that stitches are needed. But don’t worry because according to surgeons, scars are common after surgeries. What matters the most is for the wound to be disinfected and stitched up. To further understand dog aggressiveness, let us discuss why they attack and what to do if a dog attacks you.
Why Dogs Attack
Most of the time, if you are a stranger to them, dogs don’t just invade a human’s private space for nothing. They may be barking and acting aggressive towards you, but will not attack unless they see you as a threat. It can be very frightening to be in such a situation but it can be avoided if you can determine the reasons why they are acting that way.
Listed below are the common reasons why dogs attack:
- They are not feeling well.
When your sweet, caring, and loving dog suddenly acts irritable and moody, you might want to check if they are suffering from an illness or injury. Usually, when a dog is feeling pain, they act aggressively and starts biting. This is because they are not comfortable due to the stress brought by the illness.
- They are afraid.
Fear may not be an obvious reason why they attack but an aggressive dog can only indicate that they are sensing danger. This then leads to aggressiveness as they feel the need to immediately defend themselves.
- They are possessive.
When a dog bites, it may be due to possessiveness. If you notice, some of them have favorite toys to play with, and if you touch it, they will perceive it negatively and start acting up. This can also be applied when the dog is attached to its favorite person where they wouldn’t want another dog or human to be anywhere near their owner.
- They want to show dominance.
Aggressive dogs usually use methods like barking and biting just to prove that they are dominant. Although most of the time, they exhibit this behavior toward other dogs, it can happen to people as well.
- They feel frustrated.
If you could observe, when a dog wants to have something, they start barking to get your attention. Sadly, if they feel like you are not paying enough attention to them, they will start feeling frustrated which then ends up in aggressiveness.
- They are protective.
Dogs are protective in nature. When they see you as a threat to their owner or their personal space, they might act up and attack you out of nowhere.
- They feel anxious.
Anxiety can be a reason as well. This often occurs when the dog is not used to being in a situation such as car rides, crowded areas, new home, and the likes.
Once you understand the reason why a certain dog is aggressive, it will be easier for you to come up with a solution to avoid provoking them.
What To do If a Dog Attacks You
Your instincts and knowledge can save you if a dog attacks you. If you get in a situation where a dog is aggressively barking and show indications that they are about to attack, make sure that you know what to do if a dog attacks you:
- If possible, slowly walk away from the dog and put a barrier between the two of you.
- Try not to use your body parts to defend yourself, use an object to throw at the dog, and keep your distance.
- Call for help if you see the owner or anyone nearby.
- If you could, cover the dog’s face.
- Stay calm and do not panic.
- Stay upright, do not succumb to fear.
- Avoid screaming, this will give them the idea that they have power over you.
- Get on top of things like chairs, tables, or trees.
- If available, feed the dog with food to divert their attention.
- If the dog bites you, try not to pull out the bitten body part forcibly. Force it into the dog’s mouth instead to avoid severe tearing.
First Aid for Dog Bites
Worst case scenario is when the dog takes ahold of you and bites you. This could put you in a crucial situation and immediate medical attention is required. Follow these first aid steps after a dog attacks you to prevent infection:
- Use a clean towel to cover the bitten body part.
- Keep the injured area elevated as you clean it with water.
- Wash the bitten area with mild soap and running water.
- Apply bandage to prevent excessive bleeding.
- Apply over the counter antibiotics to the wound.
Once you’re settled. Run to the doctor immediately and seek medical assistance. Dog bites are not something to take no notice of as it can lead to several complications if left untreated.