However, not every dog we or others encounter is going to be properly restrained, and people need to understand what to do in order to minimize the chance that they will be attacked and bitten by dogs that are on the loose. This is particularly true of children, as they are the ones who suffer the most in terms of dog bite attacks in the United States every year. Knowing what to do could make the difference between being attacked and proceeding safely, or it could at least make a difference in the severity of the attack should one occur. The first and most obvious tip for avoiding dog bites is to never approach an unfamiliar dog. Dogs have defense mechanisms and instincts and they could be on territory that they feel that they are defending. Dogs may not trust you or any other unfamiliar human. If a dog approaches you, you need to avoid running and screaming. Doing this could trigger the predator instinct that many dogs have and prompt them to chase you when they may not do so otherwise. Instead, if a dog approaches you, remain motionless and do what you can to avoid displaying any fear. If the dog continues to approach you, avoid making direct eye contact with it. Looking directly into a dog’s eyes could be received as a challenge that needs a reaction. If the dog does lunge at you and knocks you over, the best step to take at that point is to simply cover up by rolling into a tight ball. A dog may not continue an attack for long if it does not feel that it is in a position where it has to defend itself against its own attacker. Children especially need to be taught to avoid interacting with a dog unless an adult is present and supervising. This will only help to keep the entire situation under control and provide some protection for both the dog and the child. Children should also be taught to tell an adult immediately if he or she is bitten by a dog so that proper steps can be taken. There is no surefire way to avoid all dog bite attacks. Millions of them occur every year. However, if children in particular have an idea of what to do in these situations, it could prove to be critically beneficial. If you or someone you love has been attacked by a dog, contact the Las Vegas injury lawyers at Bernstein & Poisson today to schedule a free initial consultation.