ADVICE FOR DEALING WITH DANGEROUS DOGS
In the course of your work, you may find yourself walking, cycling, or visiting clients when an unfamiliar and potentially dangerous dog crosses your path. These encounters can be unnerving, as dogs may bark, growl, or even charge at you. It’s essential to know how to respond effectively in such situations, as even small dogs can pose a threat when agitated, and any dog has the potential to deliver a painful bite.
Responding to a Dangerous Dog Encounter in Public or a Client’s Home
Encounters with potentially dangerous dogs can be unsettling, whether in a public place or while visiting a client in their home. It’s crucial to know how to respond appropriately to ensure your safety and minimise the risk of harm. Here are some generic guidelines to follow when faced with such situations:
In Public Places:
Remain Calm: If you encounter a dog in a public place that exhibits aggressive behaviour, stay as calm as possible. Dogs can often sense fear or agitation, which may escalate the situation.
Avoid Eye Contact: Do not make direct eye contact with the dog, as this can be perceived as a threat. Instead, keep your gaze averted and your body turned slightly to the side, which is considered less confrontational in dog body language.
Stand Still: Avoid making sudden movements or running away, as this can trigger a chase response in some dogs. Stand still, with your arms by your side, to appear less threatening.
Don’t Shout or Scream: Avoid shouting or screaming, as this can agitate the dog further. Speak calmly and firmly if necessary.
Back Away Slowly: If the dog is not charging at you, slowly back away without turning your back to the dog. Maintain visual contact with the dog while doing so.
Use Barriers: If available, put physical barriers (like a tree or a parked car) between you and the dog. This can provide protection and create distance.
Use Personal Items: If the dog becomes physically aggressive, use your bag, jacket, or any available items to create a barrier between you and the dog.
While Visiting a Client’s Home:
Alert Your Client: If you encounter a dangerous dog at a client’s home, inform your client immediately. Their knowledge of their pet’s behaviour is essential.
Stay Calm: Remain composed and avoid sudden movements. Your calm demeanour can influence the dog’s behaviour.
Ask for Restraint: Request that the client securely restrain or remove the dog from the area during your visit. This may involve crating the dog or placing it in another room.
Keep Distance: Maintain a safe distance from the dog, especially if it displays signs of aggression or discomfort.
Reschedule if Necessary: If the client cannot adequately control the dog or if the situation is unsafe, consider rescheduling your visit.
Prioritise Safety: Your safety should be paramount. If you feel that your safety is at risk, do not hesitate to leave the premises and address the situation with your client later.
Remember, each dog is unique, and responses may vary. It’s essential to prioritize your safety, assess the situation, and act accordingly. Whenever possible, seek training in dangerous dogs’ awareness to enhance your skills in dealing with such encounters.
For comprehensive training on dealing with dangerous dogs and ensuring your safety, Safety Solutions offers bespoke dangerous dogs training sessions. These sessions are tailored to equip individuals with the necessary skills to confidently handle such situations and protect themselves effectively.
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If you found this information valuable and are interested in improving your team’s safety practices or looking for bespoke training solutions, contact us today. Our expert team is ready to assist you. Explore our range of training services on our website, and don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions or specific needs. We look forward to helping you achieve a safer, more productive workplace.