How to Handle a Dangerous Dog

Residents of a northwest Austin neighborhood have been on the lookout for a brown and white pit bull named Teddy Bear. In April, Teddy Bear was quarantined for 10 days after biting a 78-year-old man on the arm, leg and hand. Last month, the pit bull attacked another person, causing wounds that led to hospitalization. It is believed that the dog may still be at large, causing worry for parents of young children in the area.

When a dog bite occurs, the owner is required to provide current rabies vaccination documents to Animal Protection. If no documents are turned over, the dog is quarantined for 10 days and observed by a vet before being returned to the owner. However, the dog is nowhere to be found.

What Do I Do If I Am Attacked by a Dog?

If you see a dog that appears dangerous, the first thing you should do is call 911. This allows police time to get to you in case the dog attacks. If a dog is aggressive toward you, follow these instructions:

  1. Avoid eye contact.
  2. Turn your body slowly to the side.
  3. Cross your arms.
  4. Pretend to ignore the dog.
  5. Stay still for a short period, and then move slowly away from the dog
  6. Try to put a barrier between you and the dog, and get to higher ground. It is harder for dogs to attack from below.
  7. Don’t try to communicate with the dog – the more boring you are, the less likely it is to attack
  8. If the dog does attack, do what you can to block its bites. Using a purse, a rolled-up jacket or stick to redirect bites can help. Try to block the dog’s vision; they will often disengage if they cannot see.
  9. If you are in a situation where the dog is mauling you, not just biting, tuck into a ball and protect your neck with your hands. If you are alone, you are not likely to get the dog off until it loses interest or until the police arrive. Do your best to protect your own life.
  10. Seek medical attention and call animal control to report the incident.



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