amongst all living creatures, including humans ....
In the face of threat, if you don't react with animosity or fear and you hold the same feelings internally with integrity .... the aggressor becomes baffled and doesn't know exactly what to do and will therefore, probably not attack.
As a youngster, I'd often heard advice about bear attacks .... that the best defense was just to be still. Maybe fall to the ground and roll up into a ball. I'd also heard that dogs can "smell fear" and will attack if they sense fear.
One day, I had the opportunity to check out the latter theory!~ A cousin and I were scrounging around in a vast car dump for parts for our respective cars, one late summer's evening. Now, in our opinion, we weren't stealing anything because these cars had been brought to this site by owners, as the result of a newly implemented govt. inspection program after their vehicles had been inspected and failed to pass. It was a recycling plant that crushed and sold cars for scrap. The plant had recently suffered an explosion in their equipment and was thereby crippled and shut down and couldn't process the carcasses and so cars were being piled up in a backlog for several acres, outside of the plant's own fence.
We scrounged for sometime but couldn't find certain tires we wanted and so we decided to go through a small hole in the fence into the main yard. After some time, we still hadn't located any good tires and were about to leave the yard, looking for a different exit point. Suddenly we found ourselves being intercepted by a couple of huge Doberman dogs coming at us full tilt, from the yard's administration shack!
My cousin looked at me in a panic and asked, "what do we do?!"
I remembered the advice I'd heard and -coupled with a few other small incidents of personal experience as a door-to-door Fuller Brush salesman- I said, "Just be very calm. They can smell fear so don't let yourself get scared. Keep talking to me as though we're workers. Don't look at them directly. Just kind of ignore them and don't move away."
They came right up to us, barking their fool heads off in a menacing fashion and we just stood there and kept talking in low voices to each other. I gave the dogs a quick firm glance, nodding my head to them to acknowledge their presence but then turned back and talked to my cousin again.
In about 30 seconds, the dogs were quite confused, turned around and ran back to the shack. Then we sidled off, found our hole and got the heck OUT of there!!~