Archive for May, 2011

A Dozen Ways to Protect Your Family and Avoid Dog Bites

Statistics tell us that dogs bite about 4.7 million people in the United States every year.

Most of these bites can be avoided with the proper training of humans and a little dog whispering for any dogs who may have aggressive tendencies.

Studies have found that children are about three times more likely than adults to be bitten by a dog.

The reasons children are more susceptible to dog bites are many, including children being usually much more unpredictable, they may think it’s fun to tease a dog or puppy, they are usually displaying higher energy, including high pitched, screaming or yelling voices and often are running about in an excited or erratic manner, which to a dog, is perceived as unstable energy.

Every year, in the U.S. alone, because of lack of education, about 600,000 children require medical attention, some requiring plastic surgery, for dog bites.

There was an 8% increase between 2009 and 2010, resulting in nearly 33,000 reconstructive surgery procedures on dog bite victims in the United States, the majority of which were performed on children, who are frequently bitten on the face, which can result in permanent scarring.

There are many ways you can protect yourself and your family from dog bites:

  1. Never leave babies and small child alone with a dog or puppy;
  2. Always teach your children to be calm around puppies and dogs;
  3. Always teach your children to ask a dog owner for permission before petting any dog or puppy;
  4. Never put your face or allow your children to put their faces into the face of a dog or puppy;
  5. Never reach for the head of an unknown dog or puppy or touch it in any way before letting the animal sniff you or your child first;
  6. Always approach a dog or puppy from the side (not head on) and pet them gently under the chin, not the top of the head;
  7. If a dog or puppy is sleeping, eating, playing with a toy or another dog or caring for puppies, do not interfere, just leave it alone;
  8. Walk, don’t run, when passing a dog;
  9. Never allow your children to be screaming or displaying excited energy around a dog;
  10. If you or your child feel threatened by a dog, take deep, calming breaths, avoid eye contact, and calmly stand still until the dog backs away or leaves;
  11. An adult or child who gets knocked down by a threatening dog should curl into a ball and protect their face using their arms and fists; and
  12. Hire your local dog whisperer to come to your home and teach you dog psychology.

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