6 tips to avoid deer attack


Attacks by deer are not common, but as a wild animal, any deer presents a formidable opponent if you find yourself having to fend off an attack. Deer antlers alone can be fatal, gorging vital organs if you get too close. But the most realistic danger from deer are the hooves, which deer will typically use like boxing gloves, rearing up on their hind legs in order to rain down blows upon the head, neck and upper torso. Though most people have a tendency to giggle when they see footage of a deer attack, the results can be lethal. Not only does the animal possess enough strength to inflict permanent damage, the hard hooves have sharp edges that easily tear flesh and the height from which the deer’s blows are delivered, when reared back on his hind legs, amplifies the impact as gravity helps increase the force of the blow because a deer standing on his hind legs can easily exceed 6 feet tall.

One final note, just like with elk and moose, deer can be skittish and react aggressively to a threat perceived on a nearby animal. In other words, the deer standing closest to yourself may not have a problem with your actions, but another deer you are not paying attention to might have a problem and attack another person or attack you from an unexpected angle. The pheromones secreted by the animals create a scent undetectable to humans. If Deer A gets nervous and doesn’t visibly react to your approach, he may release pheromones that Deer B, standing nearby, detects and Deer B may be willing to react physically where Deer A is not. There are many stories of deer, elk and moose reacting in such a fashion, where the person who eventually got attacked was hurt because someone else’s actions scared a different animal, but the release of pheromones caused the second animal to attack the second human, neither of which was involved in the original close encounter.  The best way to survive an attack by a moose is to avoid creating one in the first place. When hiking, camping or spending any time outside in moose territory it is suggested that you follow these 6 tips:

The best way to survive an attack by a deer is to avoid creating one in the first place. When hiking, camping or spending any time outside in deer territory it is suggested that you follow these 9 tips:

  • if a deer approaches you, back off and look for a tree, fence or building to hide behind
  • if the animal charges, run to the nearest object you can get between yourself and the moose
  • watch for any signs of animal activity such as tracks,  prints and scat
  • travel in groups
  • if you do hike alone, tell someone where you plan to go and what time you expect to return
  • keep dogs leashed so they don’t provoke attacks by wild animals (some experts suggest leaving the dog at home as some attacks by wild animals are actually attacks on the pet dog, not the human, because the dog is seen as a threat by the wild animal)