First of all, let me warn everyone that a Tiger is an impeccable slaughtering machine. So, the most ideal approach to fight him is, not to fight him. This is a note from some individuals past encounters and knowledge of local people who occasionally meet the Tiger on foot in their own backyard. It is quite possible that on your wildlife safari occasion, you may likewise encounter a Tiger by walking accidentally and unintentionally.
This can happen to anyone in national park. Generally, the national parks of India don’t have any fence or dividers. The Tigers roam in and around the national parks in search of food and to mark their territory. They come out of their home to visit the vicinity of the villages where majority of the resorts are established.
What to do when you encounter a Tiger on foot?
Tigers are generally not interested in human beings. It is frequently seen that he will leave the trail in the event that he hears or sees you on a similar trail. Having said this, it doesn’t mean that you toss the alert to the breezes. In some cases, a Tiger would do a mock charge to threat you, i.e. Tiger will come half way fully charging, then suddenly stop, turn around, and run away. These are serious and life-threatening situations. Hence, it is best to be alert & prepared. Note down following points in case if you encounter a Tiger on foot.
In case, if you encounter a Tiger first then stay calm and control your breathing speed. You can easily get nervous, but your stillness when he notices you is your major chance of escape from that situation. If he hasn’t seen you, then remain calm, wait for him to move on, and you later move in the different direction. Saving yourself should be the only motive and avoid being foolishly macho. Your anxiety or one wrong step can encourage tiger to attack you.
Regardless of whether you are a believer or a nonbeliever of god, there is no better time than this to praying. It will at least give you the courage to face the situation.
Stand up tall when you encounter a Tiger on foot
If you are sitting on the trail, gradually stand up and stand tall. The Tiger must know you are human being and should not mistake you as his prey animal. Tigers typically attack their prey from back especially when they appear to be sitting. He will consider you as a small prey animal and attack you. By standing tall, you are showing him that you are a human and not his natural prey.
Signs that a Tiger is annoyed with you
If the Tiger is angry with you, he will indicate it by a snarl, or he may take a stalking position. What is a stalking position? Fundamentally, before a Tiger assaults, he crouches, his ears move back, he freezes, concentrates on his prey, snarls, and attack. If tiger is taking that position, then you should start backing up. You should not show your back to him, rather gradually and relentlessly just back up. Continue backing off gradually until the Tiger is well out of sight.
Never run when you accidentally encounter a Tiger on foot. Tigers are naturally trained to chase anything running and kill.
Climb a Tree
If there is a tall tree nearby and the Tiger is far enough, and you know how to climb a tree instantly, then you can go ahead. Make sure you reach at-least 15 feet above the ground, as Tigers can jump up to 15 feet comfortably above ground level. So climb quickly, else does not attempt.
If you encounter a Leopard or a Sloth Bear then climbing the tree is not an option as they both are master in climbing, especially Leopard.
If you have some metal or anything which can make noise, do it. But do this only after you are sure that the Tiger has made up his mind to attack you. In case, if you have nothing to make noise, and Tiger is charging, then shout as loud as possible.
Fight if you have no choice
When other options don’t work for you and you have no option left but to fight with Tiger, and when a Tiger charges and jumps at you, do the following:
Get as close as possible to Tiger when he attacks you.
Embrace him tight. Try not to give him any breathing space. Embracing a Tiger can surprise him. All carnivores prefer distance. Tigers don’t like physical closeness and try to avoid physical contact. Even Tigers fighting with each other keep distance from each other. At first, they would slap each other, and wait to take a bite and choke the jugular vein on the neck of his opponent. So, keep your neck away from his jaw.
It is your weapon vs his canines & claws
Whatever you can pick and hit the tiger, can be your ultimate weapon at that situation. You can pick rock, branch, stick, and use it to protect yourself from him.
Keep in mind that his weapons are his canines & claws; you must stay away from them. Your weapon is whatever you get or have in hand. With his weapons he can brutally injure you. Generally, Tigers avoid fights. But if they involve in fighting, they will definitely go for the kill, until and unless they are surprised by your behavior. In that situation, they simply want to get away.
Continue shouting and be as close as possible to him. Avoid his fatal bite, as not only it can kill you, but also give you some fatal infection as his canines have lot of bacteria.
Hit the Tiger on his weak spots like eyes and nose. Strike it & strike it hard
If there is a lake or a river, do not get into it to save yourself. Tigers are incredible swimmers, and will out pace you much sooner that you think.
Let me remind you again, the most ideal approach to fight the tiger is, not to fight tiger.
With prayers from me that you never face a Tiger on foot in his territory