Self defense is not just about protecting yourself from people. This is also about defending yourself from animals or elements that may endanger your life.
The question that we will answer right now is about bear attacks. This is based on the question sent to us by a reader asking, “How can I defend myself from bear attacks?”
Ways to Defend Yourself From Bear Attacks
Here are some techniques on how you can prevent bear attacks or survive an encounter with a bear:
1. Keep Away From the Bear’s Territory and Cubs
As they say, “Prevention is better than cure.” So, avoid any close encounter with a bear at all times. Keep away from its territory, and never approach its cubs no matter how cute they might look to you. A bear will do anything to protect its territory, and it has the tendency to attack anyone who crosses it, especially if it is nursing its offspring in the area.
2. Determine the Reason of the Bear Attack
Aside from self defense on the bear’s part, a form of aggression may also be triggered by hunger. Use your instincts to determine the reason why the bear is engaging you, and respond to it accordingly.
Take into consideration too that the bear might only be curious. In that case, do not threaten it and walk away from it slowly.
3. Let Go of the Food that You are Holding
If you are eating and a bear approaches you aggressively, it may only be hungry. So, one way to get rid of it is by throwing away your food in order for the animal to go towards its direction.
4. Do Not Show Fear
When a bear approaches, never show fear or any sudden movements that may be interpreted by the animal as a threat. If the bear walks aggressively towards you, never back down.
Raise your hand so you will appear bigger than you really are and start making noises similar to a growl as you slowly walk back. If the bear answers back with a growl, make your own growl louder.
Even if the animal charges at you, stand your ground. Bears, especially young ones, tend to show their superiority that way. But if you don’t call their bluff, they will eventually lose interest and turn away.
Remember that the technique does not work though if the bear is really hungry or mad.
5. Play Dead
If the bear is really mad, that’s the time you should play dead. Lay flat on the ground and roll over onto your stomach. Clamp your hands over your neck for protection and spread your feet wide so the animal will not be able to flip you over.
While the animal is nearby, do not move because it might still be examining you. Make sure that it is no longer within the vicinity before you move.
5. Use Self Defense Weapons
Bears rarely treat people as food. However, if you find yourself in the animal’s menu, and there is no other way to get rid of it, that’s the time for you to fight back.
Use weapons to hit its face, especially its eyes, nose or mouth. You can use a hard wood as a club. If you have a taser or bear spray, use it as well.
Never hesitate to use a gun too if you are carrying one. Just be sure that you will be able to justify your act as self defense and prove that your life is on the line during the encounter when authorities question you later.
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