Fact or Fiction: Surviving an Animal Attack

By: Staff

4 Min Quiz

Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

What happens if you accidentally encounter an animal that feels threatened or frightened by you? What if it attacks? Take this quiz to see whether you've got what it takes to survive or if Mother Nature will reign supreme.

You're face to face with a grizzly bear. You stand your ground, but the bear charges at you several times. Your best option is to run away.

Running away from an aggressive grizzly might trigger its chase response. Your safest option is to lie face down with your hands protecting the back of your head until the bear loses interest.


If you encounter a wolf that isn't afraid of humans, you should make yourself look bigger while throwing rocks or twigs near it to discourage it from coming closer.

Making sure there's no food lying around is the best way to prevent unwanted visits from any wild animals. If a wolf approaches you, don't feed it: Stand your ground and throw rocks or sticks near the wolf to scare it away.


Your nature-loving friend got a little too close to a copperhead snake while photographing it, and it bit him on the leg. To increase his chances of survival, you should suck the venom out of the wound with your mouth.

We'll do anything for our friends, but sucking or squeezing out snake venom should not be one of them. Removing venom this way increases risks of infection and can damage neurovascular tissue. Until help arrives, you should keep your friend calm and hold the wound below his heart to slow down blood circulation near the snakebite.


If you ever feel the sharp sting of the box jellyfish, you should apply a bandage to the sting immediately.

You should not rub the sting wound or place a bandage on it. Instead, pour vinegar over the wound for at least 30 seconds and wait for emergency medical help. In some cases, a box jellyfish sting can cause cardiac arrest or suspend breathing.


You disturb a hive home to hundreds of Africanized honeybees, and they begin to chase you. Your best option is to jump in your neighbor's pool to get away from the bees.

You can't hold your breath forever! Africanized bees, or "killer bees," will most likely just wait for you to resurface. Experts say running to a car or enclosed shelter with your shirt pulled up to protect your face is a safer way to evade this bothersome bunch.


On the show "MythBusters," Adam and Jamie had a close animal encounter while jabbing hungry sharks underwater.

Actually it was Buster, one of the show's crash test dummies, who bore the brunt of the work underwater for the team, delivering mechanical punches. And Buster had the bite marks to prove it!


Unlike venomous snakebites, venomous spider bites can be rinsed and iced.

You can rinse and ice venomous spider bites while waiting to receive medical treatment.


Insect repellant, insecticidal nets and antimalarial drugs can protect you from one of the world's most dangerous animals.

A type of female Anopheles mosquito can transmit malaria by biting people. But using insect repellant, insecticidal nets and antimalarial medications can decrease your chance of being one of the 200 million-plus malaria cases each year.


If you find yourself within feet of a grizzly bear, you should wave your hands in the air to make yourself look bigger while slowly backing away without making eye contact.

Never turn your back on a grizzly bear as you attempt to walk away. In addition, a grizzly may interpret eye contact as threatening.


You're approached by an aggressive mountain lion. In addition to making yourself look bigger and throwing things, you should maintain eye contact with the animal.

In most animal attacks, making eye contact is a bad idea, but that's not true with mountain lions. If you maintain eye contact, it can intimidate the mountain lion while you slowly back away.


Though alligators rarely take on larger prey, they sometimes attack humans. If an alligator grabs you, you should try to fight back so you can escape.

Alligators like easy meals, so fighting back is your best option for survival. Prying its mouth open probably won't work, but any form of resistance -- including hitting or poking sensitive areas of the alligator's face -- may increase your chances of being let go.


If you ever find yourself in the jaws of a shark, you should NOT fight back. The shark will think you're dead and let you go.

Jabbing the shark's gills and other sensitive areas will increase your chances of it releasing you. Be sure to steer clear of the shark's mouth -- you're less likely to lose an arm hitting the top of its nose instead.


A long-tailed macaque -- a type of monkey from Southeast Asia -- escapes its enclosure at a zoo and is roaming free. As it approaches, you should let it know you mean no harm by smiling and waving.

Smiling isn't always a friendly gesture, especially for primates who consider eye contact and baring teeth to be aggressive. Also, leaning over or stepping closer to the animal will make it feel cornered and more likely to attack. Your best shot is to stay calm and fend off the animal if it becomes violent.


If a mountain lion attacks you, it will probably try to bite your head or neck. To survive, you should crouch to the ground and curl up in a fetal position.

Since mountain lions prefer biting the neck and head area, you should try your hardest to remain standing if attacked.


If you happen to encounter a rhinoceros ready to charge, the best way to escape is to run in the opposite direction of its charges.

Rhinoceroses are less likely to keep charging if you run in the opposite direction of their charges. Climbing a tree or running into an area with thick vegetation or thorny brush also may work since they're less likely to follow you into those areas.


Few people in the United States die from venomous snakebites, yet around 4.5 million people are bitten each year.

Though we have a deep fear of these slithery reptiles, venomous snakes only account for 7,000 to 8,000 bites per year. It's man's best friend -- the dog -- that bites approximately 4.5 million people each year in the U.S.


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that in the event of a dog attack, children should "roll up into a ball and lie still."

The CDC recommends children stay as still as a log while rolled up into a ball. Children, especially between the ages of 5 and 9, experience more dog bites than any other age group.


If you're bitten by a venomous snake, you should NOT put ice on the wound or drink alcohol or caffeine.

It's true, you shouldn't ice the wound or drink alcohol or caffeine. Icing the wound isn't effective and can cause frostbite, and drinking alcohol or caffeine can cause your body to absorb the venom faster.


An Alaskan moose thinks you're threatening her calf, so she knocks you over. You should stay on the ground until she turns her back to you.

Since the moose may kick or stomp you, you should stay curled up in a ball with your hands covering your head until she walks a safe distance away from you.


Climbing a nearby tree is an effective way to escape an aggressive elephant.

Elephants can reach speeds of 25 mph (40 kph), so you probably can't outrun them. You can, however, seek refuge in a tree -- elephants don't usually run close to large objects. If you can't find cover or a tree, lying down with your hands over your face is another option.


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