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Warning Signs that a Dog is About to ATTACK

Warning Signs that a Dog is About to ATTACK

One afternoon I was out walking with my teenage daughter, who worked at a veterinary office, and our toy poodle. Suddenly, and out of nowhere, a German shepherd came running up to us on the road. I immediately picked up our small dog and moved in front of my daughter to protect them from this large dog. My daughter moved around me put her hand down so the dog could smell it and then gently slid her hand inside of his collar and began to walk him back to his house. I was shocked and asked my daughter how she could have put herself in such a situation not knowing whether or not the dog would bite her. She told me from her experience at the that vet's office that this dog did not display the signs that he was about to attack.

There are nearly 5,000,000 dog bite incidences in the United States each year. Obviously millions of people are unaware of whether or not the dog they encounter is about to bite them or attack them. A large number of dog bites occur on private property by a dog that the victim knows. These situations can occur when a person goes to visit a relative or friend who owns a dog and is attacked on their property or when someone brings their dog over to a friend or relative's house who bite someone. In many of these cases, the dog owner might feel less likely that there is some risk of a dog bite because of the fact that they are with friends and family and not strangers.


Many times a dog will attack an individual because they are either afraid or feel threatened.

There are a number of obvious signs that will show that a dog feels threatened or is about to attack which could include but are not
limited to the following:

  • growling;
  • barking;
  • aggressive behavior;
  • nipping or biting;
  • when a dog's ears suddenly pick up;
  • when a dog's teeth are showing; 
  • when a dog's tongue is curled up;
  • when a dog is salivating,
  • eating, drinking or playing with a toy and is suddenly disturbed; or
  • if the dog seems upset or overly aroused.

It is always a good idea to receive instructions from the owner of the dog before approaching or petting the dog. Sometimes a dog will roll over on its back and you will immediately think that the dog wants to have its stomach rubbed but this may not be the case. Sometimes a dog will slightly lift up one of its front paws which might cause a person to think that the dog wants to have their stomach rubbed but it could mean something completely different. Different dogs have different temperaments, different situations can turn otherwise calm dogs into aggressive dogs so it is always a good idea to receive instructions from the dog's owner or keeper before interacting with the pet.

When someone is bitten by a dog and a person is there to help, the immediate inclination is to try to pull the dog off its victim. If you do this, the dog might bite down even harder or you could cause large lacerations as the dog's teeth ripped through the victim's skin. One suggestion is that you take a piece of clothing and cover the dogs head because a dog is more likely to release its bite because they panic as a result of not being able to see. If you are walking your dog and are looking for a technique to avoid your dog being attacked, it is a good idea to bring with you a number of dog treats and if a dog starts coming towards your dog then you can throw the treats far enough away from your dog so you can attempt to avoid your dog being attacked.

If you have been bitten by a dog and have sustained a significant cosmetic injury, it is extremely important that you be taken to the nearest hospital by ambulance and insist that a plastic surgeon handle all of the stitching of your wound rather then allowing someone with a lesser amount of expertise to potentially make a mistake and improperly stitch your wound.

You should also make sure the police or dog warden is called so that a proper investigation and report can be filed and you should contact an experienced Connecticut dog bite lawyer at the earliest possible moment. You can visit our website at www.HCWLAW.com and download a free copy of our Connecticut dog bite injuries book that will tell you exactly what you should be doing and you should not be doing. You can also call our toll-free number and speak with one of our Connecticut dog bite attorneys at 888-244 5840.

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