Monday, May 17, 2010
Dominic Solesky at 13-years old (Click image to watch video).
Fighting Against Dog Bites
Washington D.C. - Back in March, we published a post about Anthony Solesky and his son Dominic (View Anthony's story: Dangerous by Default: Extreme Breeds). On April 28, 2007, Dominic and two other boys were attacked by a pit bull that leaped from its pen. Dominic suffered life-altering injuries. Both Anthony and his son were recently featured in an NBC Washington video that was broadcast in conjunction with National Dog Bite Prevention Week 2010.
Dominic tells his story on camera. He describes the sound of blood flowing from his leg, "It sounded like water. Like someone just took a water bottle and turned it upside down. That's how loud the blood was coming out of my leg." The pit bull had torn through his femoral artery. The news team also interviews the Johns Hopkins doctor who performed the artery repair surgery. The doctor and his surgical team are attributed to saving Dominic's life and his leg.
"Generalized" Dog Bite Prevention Tips
The video offers "generalized" bite prevention tips, such as "Don't touch dogs sleeping, eating or with puppies," and "Don't run or scream." As Anthony voiced in his own piece, "Not coincidentally, two of the four boys were able to escape attack. Should each have curled up in a ball1 instead of running?" DogsBite.org does not believe that such tips adequately address the pit bull breed, selectively bred to attack unprovoked, unpredictably2 and with great tenacity.3
The tips also make safety the victim's responsibility. As Anthony noted in a recent email, "Why wouldn't these safety tips be aimed at dog owners? Don't feed your dog around children, for instance." One also has to question how a 3-year old, or a child from the highest risk category, ages 5 to 9, can permanently digest and adhere to such tips. Would a school remove its crossing guards from crosswalks because the children had been informed how to safely cross a street?
More Dog Bite Prevention Resources
- Diggity the Dog's 17 Vital Safety Tips for Children
- The Most Dangerous Situations - DogsBite.org
- The Dog Bite Law Danger Scale
2The Ethology and Epidemiology of Canine Aggression, by Randall Lockwood, The Domestic Dog: Its Evolution, Behaviour, and Interactions with People, edited by James Serpell, Cambridge University Press, 1995.; republished in Animal Law and Dog Behavior, Ed. David Favre and Peter L. Borchelt, PhD, 1999
3The "generalized" tips are designed to prevent "normal" dog bites and they provide important education in this area. But the tips do not address the many pit bull maulings where the dog snaps its chain, leaps over a fence or chews through wire caging to attack an unsuspecting victim.
03/10/10: Dangerous By Default: Extreme Breeds by Anthony Solesky
05/17/09: National Dog Bite Prevention Week (May 17-23, 2009) - DogsBite.org
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| 5/17/2010 6:34 PM |
These "Dog Bite Prevention" tips are not only useless with pit bulls (once pit bulls start attacking, NOTHING but killing them stops them) but they are spread around by the pit bull advocacy lobby to PUT THE BLAME ON THE VICTIM.
They are trying to say that if children don't "do the right thing" they are asking for an attack.
This is ridiculous.
Fighting breeds like pit bulls attack unprovoked. NOTHING the victim is doing is to blame.
And no tip in the world will stop a pit bull attack. Even bullets sometimes don't!
The answer is to stop breeding dogs whose purpose is to attack and kill. The defect is the fighting breed.
| 5/17/2010 11:09 PM |
Had I done any of the things they spread in generalized dog bite prevention tips, I would be dead, plain and simple. The last thing you want to do during a pit attack is to drop to the ground. You will not be able to shield your ears and face with your hands. Pit bulls will take your hands off, shred your forearms, and with a small child, they can bite completely through the neck or spinal column. I'm all for dog bite prevention and safety, but I believe that applying the rules of general dog behavior to the defectively responsive pit bull is tantamount to telling people that paper shields will deflect bullets.
| 5/18/2010 12:56 AM |
There should definitely be tips provided to all about How To Kill A Pit Bull When It Attacks You, because killing it is the only way to stop the mauling.
One man who was on a motorcycle and was jumped and mauled saved his life by choking the pit bull to death. But he was a strong man, and most people, especially children, could not do this.
We see in attack after attack that pit bulls WILL NOT STOP MAULING even though they are hit over the head with shovels, kicked, pepper sprayed, even shot repeatedly.
Even their owners can't stop the mauling!
They maul their own OWNERS!
Of course the answer to all of this is that NO ONE has the right to breed fighting breeds, no one has the right to own fighting breeds that kill.
A solid fence with a locked gate that can't be climbed over or dug under, and loss of freedom, is about the only answer until the breeders, dog fighters, and selfish aren't running the show anymore and persecuting the rest of us with pit bulls.
I am not a gun fan, but I have had to concede that we live in an age where we must be armed because of pit bulls. We must protect our familes, pets, and livestock. Too often, the only reason that people have survived pit bull attacks is because there luckily is an armed person nearby to use a gun and end the mauling.
We also need to get proactive about pit bulls in our communities to PREVENT attacks. Zero tolerance of stray or roaming pit bulls, informing insurance companies or landlords of a pit bull's presence and having an attorney send a letter, reporting breeders, filing formal complaints with every authority possible if there is ANY pit bull issue, and insisting on tough dangerous dog laws with ZERO tolerance and ZERO free bites or incidents. Also insisting on animal control that does not enable or protect pit bulls.
Doing these things are often the only hope to preventing death.
This IS a life or death struggle.
(and yes, a child curled up in the fetal position "staying still" will have a pit bull grab the child by the neck and break the child's spine or chew through.)
| 5/18/2010 6:01 AM |
Fight like hell is a good start, starvingartist3. I'd add to that do NOT run unless there is immediate high ground you can take such as the top of a high car or truck. They will outrun you if you have distance to go, and with your forward momentum, they will be able to knock you down from behind and get at your head and throat. If you can keep something between you and them, do it.
What I did in my own attack by two dogs coming at me from front and back: Focus mainly on whichever dog is trying to go for your face and throat and prevent that at all costs. Punching or shoving them back at their chests as they leap is an effective move for this. Try to keep your arms out of their mouths and your hands curled into fists to protect your fingers. If you have a jacket or a bag, try to get them focused on that instead. Sometimes, as long as they have *something* in their mouth, they won't keep looking for something else to bite. This is no guarantee, though.
If they've already bitten down and you can get them from behind, lifting the hind legs and keeping them in the air can sometimes make them let go and keep them disoriented, but you mustn't let go, or they'll just start attacking again. I wasn't able to do this, and it's risky, because you have to bend down to accomplish it, putting your face into the danger zone. If you can break their legs with a strong kick or stomp, do so, particularly hind legs, as that's where their power comes from. They're most vulnerable at joints.
Focusing on the head is mostly useless, although a strong, sharp nose chop will sometimes work. Hit *through* the blow. Try to punch a point lower than the muzzle. You want to break bone if you can. That's how I got the biggest dog to let go of my inner thigh. If you can keep your head enough, don't try to yank whatever they've grabbed back. It will just make them hold on harder. Push it *into* the bite while striking the nose or gouging the eyes. Eye gouges are sometimes effective, sometimes not. If you can reach down the throat far (assuming the worst, it already has your hand in its mouth) and yank its gullet, you can kill the dog. These dogs are extremely difficult to strangle because of the size and power of their necks, though if you can land a lucky kick or get it pinned, you can crush its windpipe.
Never assume that an unconscious dog is dead or that a dog that has temporarily stopped attacking is done. Get away from them as soon as you have the opening to do so, but don't run. That could just trigger a second attack. Above all DO NOT GIVE UP, because they won't. Believe in yourself and believe that you can survive. You're much stronger than you think you are.
| 5/18/2010 3:34 PM |
Meanwhile, a pitbull killed a 23 m.o. toddler in Spain over the weekend. Dog was locked up in kennel but grapped hold of the child through the fence. These dogs are never safe to have around the house, never.
| 5/18/2010 5:04 PM |
I've been able to break a pit and a bull mastiff's hold by putting my fingers in the back of "lips"/mouth and pulling with all my strength. This is during a dog on dog fight. I doubt one could do that if the dog is attacking you. When a dog is attacking, I have made a fist and crammed it down their throat. A tight fist is hard for them to deal with, but it is difficult to do during a time like that. But it has given me enough time to get up or get somewhat a head's up on the dog. Just try to keep from falling. And if you do fall, remember that, if you are a female, your legs are the strongest so use them to get under the dog to throw it off. Also works well with men.
| 5/18/2010 6:04 PM |
Thank you, Dark, P! I live a Texas neighborhood where several people own pit bulls, including one behind us, so this is very handy stuff to know.
Bitbypit, maybe you guys could do a post sometime featuring the advice given here. I'm sure it'd be really appreciated!
I know ItsATragedy mentioned a gentlemen who strangled a pit bull, which reminded me of another case: has anyone heard about nine-year old Drew Heredia? He got a pit bull to stop attacking his friend and her dog by applying a Brazilian jiu-jitsu chokehold and manage to restrain the animal until animal control arrived (Google it!).
| 5/18/2010 9:07 PM |
"stop attacking his friend and her dog by applying a Brazilian jiu-jitsu chokehold"
There is no technique on earth that will restrain a full bore pit bull mauling.
Even trained animal control can't restrain them.
They break rabies poles, they ignore pepper spray.
There is no magic answer other than killing the mauling pit bull, but most of all no one has the right to breed fighting breeds that are killing people.