Have you ever heard the common advice that you should not run from an aggressive dog? As a teaching point, it probably makes sense. You don’t want to get the dog riled up, you know that the animal instinctively wants to chase prey, and it just fits that running from a dog can make an attack more likely.
It’s one thing to say that, however, and quite another to hold your ground when a dog is coming at you. If a dog runs through an open gate and charges toward you as you go by a house, your instinct is to run. You may forget everything you’ve learned and try to sprint in the opposite direction, even if you’re just making the situation worse.
Well, here is one more reason not to run from an aggressive dog: You will not get away. Depending on breed and fitness, dogs can run up to 20 miles per hour. The fastest recorded time for a human, in all of history, was when Usain Bolt ran 27.8 miles per hour. He did it in Berlin while setting a world record.
Bolt is considered by many to be the fastest human to ever live. Elite athletes can’t beat him. The average person going out for a jog likely runs at around seven miles per hour, if not slower. Yes, you can go a bit faster when sprinting away, but odds are you’ll never break 15 miles per hour, much less 20. The dog is going to catch you if it is so inclined.
No matter how you react to an aggressive dog, getting bitten is not your fault. The homeowner was likely negligent in allowing the dog to escape the yard. You may have a right to compensation for your injuries and financial losses.