The stories of pit bull dogs mauling and or killing people abound. These dogs are powerful, and it is tragic that they cause so much pain and heartache. I had two separate encounters one summer with different pit bulls. I am thankful I lived to tell about them.
One morning I was taking a walk, when a few blocks from my home, a pit bull came running down a hill towards me. Initially I was terrified, and knew if I ran, the dog would over power me. Within seconds however, I was angry that this animal thought he had the right to interfere with my life.
I stood very still, and in a confident voice, I yelled, “Git”! The power of the Lord must have been with me, or that hound from hell saw an angel behind me. The dog abruptly stopped, made a whining sound, and began to back away, running sideways, and falling, back up the hill. It was kind of hilarious. I never saw that canine again.
On another morning, I had just stepped off the sidewalk in front of my house, when a neighbors pit bull, ran across the street barking at me. This dog had been intimidating people for awhile, but always stayed on his side of the street. Remembering my previous pit bull encounter, I was outraged that this beast had the nerve to come across the street, when I had not provoked him.
I quickly took off my shoe, raised it at the dog, and in a firm voice, I told him to go back. The dog stood about 3 feet from me snarling and barking, but never came any closer. I stood my ground, and over and over again, I continued to say, “Get back,” until his owner came out and took him back home.
I was glad to read, that for the most part, I acted appropriately when confronted by those two dogs. There was much however, that I did not know. Here are some steps to take should you encounter an aggressive pit bull dog, that will help diffuse the situation.
Do not make any sudden moves. Stand still, and put your hands in pockets. Waving objects cause the dog to try to bite. I did not know this, so I am thankful that holding my shoe up at the second dog did not cause him to lunge for my arm.
Eye contact is confrontational, so it is best to give the animal a sideways glance. And never turn your back. I believe I stared in the faces of both dogs, so again I am thankful that no harm came to me. it is best, to move away slowly and never approach the dog.
If a pit bull does bite you, please do not pull away. This will cause your flesh to be torn. Instead shout for help, and pray someone is nearby who can insert an object, into the dogs mouth, between the teeth, to break his hold on you.
An RSPCA spokesperson said it is important to study a dog’s reaction to you. If the animal holds it;s tail high, stiffens up and stares, please be on guard. If the dog bares its teeth, do not go any further, but please do not turn your back on the animal, and or run. Again, back away slowly. By conducting yourself in a friendly, yet confident manner, it will lesson the fear.