How to Prevent a Pitbull Dog Attack

Dogs are notoriously unpredictable animals. Fear-driven bites from them often occur because their highly developed sense of smell allows them to recognize humans who exhibit fearful behaviours; even the friendliest canine may become aggressive if it feels that someone is harming it in some way.

When witnessing an aggressive pitbull attacking another animal, stay calm. Distract it as best possible before intervening.


Dogs become aggressive when they feel threatened, and most attacks can be avoided through proper socialization, training, containment and supervision of your pup. Although well-trained pups may be less likely to bite than untrained ones, even the best-trained can be provoked to attack when exposed to strangers, objects or animals they find startling or when trapped inside a small space such as their home.

Many attacks against dogs result from their being kept in yards without fences, or having escaped through holes in the fences. As these dogs often aren’t well socialized with humans or other animals, their fearfulness of newcomers often drives their use as junk yard dogs – thus explaining why so many pit bulls are used this way.

Geneticist Zawistowski notes that irresponsible breeders of pit bulls “let their guard down against aggression,” leading them to be over-stimulated by other animals and humans, potentially prompting an attack. Furthermore, pit bulls bred for show ring competition are left acting unsupervised due to competition for attention in the show ring; they don’t learn body language as easily, leading them to appear unpredictable; their strength also makes them seem more dangerous than they really are.


Pitbulls have long been used as working dogs – cattle herders, hunting partners and family protectors. Unfortunately, some owners took advantage of their breed’s strength by training it to be aggressive towards other dogs – leading to numerous mauling incidents across several locations where all-out bans on this breed have been implemented. Fear can often trigger aggressive behavior; fearful dogs may display behaviors like licking themselves or chewing themselves excessively; whines/growls; whale eye (showing whites of eyes exaggerated sideways glance), crouched positioning; or body language cues such as tight face/neck muscles when confronted.

When encountering an anxious dog, don’t grab its collar or pet it on its head – these actions may feel threatening and lead to further anxiety or fear in the dog, leading to aggressive behaviours from its side. Instead, create a safe space where they can go voluntarily to remain calm – for instance a comfortable room equipped with a calming pheromone diffuser or toys can work well as temporary retreats for them.

Controlling fear after being the target of a dog attack can be challenging, but with time and the appropriate strategies you can begin healing. Joining a support group for dog attack survivors may help ease some of your burden while gradually exposing yourself to dogs in controlled settings can desensitize and build your confidence.


Redirected aggression (growl, snarl or bite) among dogs may be caused by various sources, including territorial behavior, fear, resource guarding and lack of socialization; it is important to remember that not all dog attacks are breed specific; individual temperament training upbringing and responsible ownership all play key roles in reducing dog aggression.

Intervening in dog fights often causes aggression to be channeled towards them or other animals instead, potentially leading to serious injuries including disfiguring scars and even death.

Tragic New York City attack wherein a man walking his bassett hound was attacked by two pit bulls entering his home and attacking. Although he tried to break up the fight by shouting and trying to separate them, despite his good intentions he was attacked, and severely injured by being bitten on both neck and abdomen.

Although it remains unclear exactly which breed the two dogs involved were, judging from photos released by authorities they are likely pit bulls. Pit bulls account for 87% of fatal dog attacks against humans in 2012 in America alone; six people have been killed as a result of documented attacks during that same timeframe in South Africa (despite similar legislation to America and dangerous dogfighting rings using pit bulls for fighting purposes).


For instance, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), dog attacks frequently lead to fractures, torn organs and severe disfigurement for victims of pit bull attacks. Furthermore, victims often endure catastrophic injuries that require expensive medical expenses and permanent disabilities for treatment.

Bites from dogs can lead to infections in many instances, as bite wounds often leave small holes in the skin which trap bacteria from an attacking dog’s mouth under its surface. Therefore, it’s vitally important to seek medical advice immediately following any bite injury and take anti-infection medications as directed.

Because a bite wound may result in serious injuries, you should always wear clothing covering the neck, shoulders, face, legs and arms – these areas are commonly targeted by dogs who feel threatened or aggressive towards humans.

Doctors can help ensure you receive immediate medical treatment following a dog attack by documenting your injuries accurately. This documentation may prove vital if legal action is pursued – for example claiming compensation for medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering damages as well as providing valuable evidence against the dog owner.