Dog bites pose a significant health concern to our society and local communities. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, over 4.5 million individuals in the United States are bitten by dogs every year, and over 800,000 of them need medical attention (CDC). Children make up at least half of those who are bit. Additional information regarding dog bites is provided below:
Nearly one in five dog bite victims need to see a doctor.
Dog bite victims who are children are much more prone to sustain serious injuries.
Young toddlers are frequently bitten by dogs when engaging in routine activities or associating with friendly canines.
Any dog, regardless of size, gender, or age, has the potential to bite. Even the sweetest, cuddliest, and fluffiest pet can bite if threatened. Remember, it is not a dog's breed the dog's unique history and behavior that decides whether it will bite.
The majority of dog attacks can be avoided, and there are numerous things you can do at home and in your neighborhood to do so.
What you can do to prevent dog bites
A simple technique to stop your dog from biting is to socialize him. Your pet will feel more at ease in a variety of situations if you socialize them. Your dog will feel more at ease in a variety of situations as it gets older if you socialize it with people and other animals when it's still a puppy. In order to keep control of your dog in public, it's also crucial to use a leash.
Dog bite prevention is built on a strong foundation of responsible pet ownership. Basics of responsible dog ownership, such as carefully choosing the dog that is best for your family, adequate training, regular exercise, and neutering or spaying your pet, can help lower the risk of dog bites.
Avoiding risky situations
It's crucial to understand how to stop potentially dangerous situations from getting worse and when you should and shouldn't contact with dogs. In the following situations, you should refrain from stroking a dog:
if the dog's owner is not present
If a dog is present with its owner but the owner refuses to allow anyone to pet the dog
Never reach through or over a fence to pet a dog if it is on the other side of it.
Whether a dog is dozing off or eating
Whenever a dog is ill or hurt
If a dog is lying down with her puppies or appears to be worried about you and fiercely protective of them,
If a dog is occupying a toy,
If a dog looks to be hiding or seeking solitude If a dog is growling or barking
It's also advisable to learn to read a dog's body language. Dogs use body language, stances, and vocalizations to express themselves and communicate, much like people do. Even while we can't always tell from a dog's body language if they are nervous, scared, or threatened, it can still provide us with useful information.
- National Dog Bite Prevention Week®
- Watch and share: Jimmy the Dog videos about dog bite prevention:
- Why breed-specific legislation is not the answer
- Planning for success
- What to do in a dog bite emergency
- Rabies and your pet
- A community approach to dog bite prevention (PDF) outlines specific actions that veterinarians can take in collaboration with state and local officials to create and administer successful dog bite prevention programs in their area.