There are tons of reasons a dog may bite a human or another dog, and it doesn’t always mean the dog is bad.
Some Dog Bite Stats and FactsGuess what? Dog bites happen. A lot.
- In fact, a dog bite happens every 75 seconds, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association.
- The CDC says 4.5 million dog bites occur every year in the U.S. with varying severity.
- A surprising one out of every five bites becomes infected.
- And 71% of dog bites that result in the death of the person that received the bite occurred on the dog owner’s property.
A dog bite happens every 75 seconds, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association.
- In fact, only 15,000 to 16,000 bites out of 850,000 claims filed, end up with a decision on the side of the person that was bitten, resulting in a payout.
- That’s roughly 2% of all decisions. Meaning, the rest of the time the court or the insurance company sides with the dog and his or her owner. That’s pretty telling.
82% of dog bites are to children ages nine and younger.
- More than half of all dog bites in the U.S. happen to children, ages six to ten.
- In fact, 82% of dog bites are to children ages nine and younger.
We should never leave our dogs alone with strangers, especially if we haven’t explored their ability to properly care for our pup.
Dog Bite Prevention for Dog GuardiansThe best way to keep ourselves and our communities safe is to take the proper precautions.
- When adopting, it’s important that we shop for the right temperament and personality for our family. Some dogs are cautious. Some are nervous. Some like kids. And just like humans, some dogs are picky about the types of humans they hang out with.
- Dogs need security and safety. We should never leave our dogs alone with strangers, especially if we haven’t explored their ability to properly care for our pup. Always check references and remember that just because someone loves to play with dogs, doesn’t mean they are qualified to care for one.
- If we’ve decided to keep a best friend who is protective of their family and property, place signs in the windows and on fences to help make meter readers and guests aware. Remember, a whopping 71% of bites that resulted in death happened on the dog’s property.
- Educate visitors on how to interact or what to expect. For example, if Fido is anxious and needs to warm up to people, let guests know that Fido will approach them when ready and to leave him alone until then.
- Training is an important part of responsible pet parenting. We need to socialize them early. And it’s best to train them to respond to commands when off leash, even if we plan to always keep them on-leash. Get help from a professional trainer as needed and at least once to better understand our canine companion’s mind and how to communicate.
Training is an important part of responsible pet parenting.
- Never leave a child and a dog together for any amount of unsupervised time. While supervising pup-kiddo playtime, make every moment a teaching moment. Don’t just watch. Help children understand how to recognize anxiousness. Teach them how to approach a dog, how to pet a dog and why poking and pulling of any kind are NOT OK. Teach and remind them often, because every dog is different and because repetition is the only true teacher.
Teach children how to approach a dog, how to pet a dog.
- Learning to read our dog’s and their anxiety level not only helps to build a healthy relationship, but also means we’ll recognize the signs of discomfort around certain people or in certain situations.
- Preventing and correcting behavioral problems is key to dog bite prevention, too. Dogs often bite in self-defense or fear, and behavioral problems just add to the risk. We can enroll in classes with a professional trainer, talk to our vet, and even consult a behaviorist.
- If anxiety is an ongoing challenge, but manageable without medicine, we can try over-the-counter remedies, such as Vet Organics EcoBalance® Calming Extra-Strength Liquid for Dogs & Cats. It helps to reduce stress and anxiety without the expensive pharmaceutical overkill a vet may prescribe.
Vet Organics EcoBalance® Calming Extra-Strength Liquid for Dogs & Cats helps to reduce stress and anxiety without the expensive pharmaceutical overkill a vet may prescribe.
The third week of May is Dog Bite Prevention Week.
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