Bite and Attack Information

How to Avoid Being Bitten by a Dog
  • Never approach an unfamiliar dog, especially one who's tied or confined behind a fence or in a car.
  • Don't pet a dog—even your own—without letting him see and sniff you first. 
  • Never turn your back to a dog and run away. A dog's natural instinct will be to chase and catch you. 
  • Don't disturb a dog while she's sleeping, eating, chewing on a toy, or caring for puppies. 
  • Be cautious around strange dogs. Always assume that a dog who doesn't know you may see you as an intruder or a threat.
What To Do If You Think a Dog May Attack
  • Resist the impulse to scream and run away. 
  • Remain motionless, hands at your sides, and avoid eye contact with the dog. 
  • Once the dog loses interest in you, slowly back away until he is out of sight. 
  • If the dog does attack, "feed" him your jacket, purse, bicycle, or anything that you can put between yourself and the dog. 
  • If you fall or are knocked to the ground, curl into a ball with your hands over your ears and remain motionless. Try not to scream or roll around.
What to Do If You Are Bitten or Attacked By a Dog
  • Try not to panic.
  • Immediately wash the wound thoroughly with soap and warm water. 
  • Contact your physician for additional care and advice. 
  • Report the bite to your local animal care and control agency. 
  • Tell the animal control official everything you know about the dog, including his owner's name and the address where he lives. 
  • If the dog is a stray, tell the animal control official what the dog looks like, where you saw him, whether you've seen him before, and in which direction he went.