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EUREKA >> A press release from the Eureka Police Department (EPD) announced that on the morning of Saturday, Sept. 27, officers responded to assist a Humboldt County Animal Control deputy with a reported dog bite call at the Herrick Park and Ride.

Upon arrival, officers were advised by the deputy that the victim had been taken to St. Joseph Hospital emergency room for treatment of substantial dog bites to his chest and arm. The deputy further advised that the offending dogs were reportedly described as one brown pit bull and one white pit bull. The dogs were possibly associated with a campsite on the spit just southwest of the Pound Road entrance to the Hikshari Trail.

Officers first checked the greenbelt area of the Hikshari Trail from Pound Road to Hilfiker Lane, due to the high pedestrian traffic in that area increasing the chance of an additional dog bite incident if the dogs had continued to that area. The dogs were not found. The area of the spit was then searched and, with the help of a civilian, the dogs were located. The dogs were quickly secured without incident and transported to the Humboldt County Animal Shelter in McKinleyville for quarantine. The owners of the dogs were not located.

The Eureka Police Department would like to remind citizens who utilize the walking trails to be cautious of loose dogs in these areas. They would also like to pass on the following tips on how to avoid dog bites. These tips were obtained from the Humane Society’s webpage.

Never approach an unfamiliar dog, especially one who is tied, confined behind a fence, or in a car. Don’t pet a dog; not even your own, without letting him see and sniff you first. Don’t disturb a dog while she’s sleeping, eating, chewing on a toy, or caring for puppies. Be cautious around strange dogs. Always assume that a dog who doesn’t know you may see you as an intruder or a threat.

Pay attention to a dog’s body language.

Put a safe amount of space between yourself and a dog if you see the following signals that the dog is uncomfortable and might feel the need to bite: tensed body, stiff tail, pulled back head and/or ears, furrowed brow, eyes rolled so the whites are visible, yawning, flicking tongue, intense stare, or backing away.

When putting space between yourself and a dog who might bite, never turn your back on the dog to try to run away. A dog’s natural instinct will be to chase and catch you.

If you think a dog might attack or if you are approached by a dog who may attack you, follow these steps:

Resist the impulse to scream and run away.

Remain motionless, hands at your sides, and avoid eye contact with the dog.

Once the dog loses interest in you, slowly back away until he is out of sight.

If the dog does attack, “feed” him your jacket, purse, bicycle, or anything that you can put between yourself and the dog.

If you fall or are knocked to the ground, curl into a ball with your hands over your ears and remain motionless. Try not to scream or roll around.

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