Even the happiest, most socialized dog in the world can engage in a fight. It could be with the neighbor’s dog or even another dog residing in your home. Unfortunately, when these fights break out, it is an owner’s instinct to step in and stop it. But, doing so can lead to serious injuries, and even a dog attack. If your dog is fighting or another dog has attacked your dog, it is imperative that you act appropriately to prevent not only injury to your dog but yourself.
Know the Temperament
If you are going to take your dog out and have them socialize with other dogs, you need to be aware of the temperament of those other dogs. Even the nicest dog can have a temperament that doesn’t correlate with the other dog – this can lead to a fight.
Keep Your Own Dog on a Leash
You may not be able to control other animals, but you can control your own. Make sure that you have your dog on a properly fitted leash, as well as a correlating collar. You should have a firm grip on that leash and be able to control your dog. If it gets too close to another animal, you want to pull it back and keep it by your side. As long as your dog is aware that you are the dominant one, it is less likely to engage in a fight.
Boost Your Own Dog’s Security
You may need to increase your own dog’s social skills and fix any insecurities that it may have. Surprisingly, dogs will initiate a fight when they don’t feel secure among other animals. Dogs usually perceive other dogs as a non-threat when they are neutered, so consider having your own dog neutered. Also, dogs will growl at younger dogs to put them in their place. If you are approaching a younger dog or have one yourself, you will want to make sure that this dominance doesn’t lead to a fight.
Do Not Use Treats
Most importantly, never toss out treats to dogs if they are fighting. While you may think that this will distract them enough to stop the fight, you need to get the dog’s attention with a command. If the other owner is not present, at least get control of your dog.
There are instances where noises can distract the dogs, such as banging on a metal object. But, be cautious if you are trying to break up a fight with two highly aggressive animals; this could lead them to attack you instead.
Call Animal Control
If a strange, unleashed dog is wandering the neighborhood and has started to fight with your own, do not engage. Instead, contact animal control immediately and report the fight. They may be able to get on scene in time to save your dog, but also catch the dog that is running wild.
Avoid Putting Your Hands in the Middle
While you may be tempted to reach in and stop the fight, never put your hands near the dogs’ heads or get in between them; this could result in you being bitten yourself. Instead, try to help the other owner by each of you grabbing your dogs from the hind legs and pulling them toward you to break up the fight.
Injured by Fighting Dogs?
It is not uncommon for someone to try to break up a dog fight, or save his or her own animal, only to be attacked by the other dog. If that dog was not on a leash or its owner did not take precautions to protect the public, you may have a claim against the owner. Contact Jeffrey H. Penneys, Esq. today to explore your options. Schedule a consultation now at 215-987-3550 or contact him on his cell at 215-771-0430. You can also request more information online.