Preventing and Avoiding Dog Bites


Statistics estimate that between 2 and 3 million dog bites are reported each year. Millions more go unreported. Children make up over 60 percent of dog-bite victims.

The following suggestions can help reduce bites:

• Spay or neuter your pet. Spaying or neutering will reduce aggression but won’t reduce your dog’s protectiveness.

• Train and socialize your dog to teach him/her appropriate behavior. Don’t play aggressive games with your dog.

• If your dog shows aggression by disobedience or dominant behavior such as growling or nipping, seek professional advice.

• Never approach a strange dog, particularly one who’s confined or restrained.

• Don’t disturb a dog who’s sleeping, eating, or caring for puppies.

• Don’t pet a dog, even your own, without letting him/her see and sniff you first.

• Avoid direct eye contact with a threatening dog. Instead, in a loud and low voice, tell the dog "go home."

• If you think a dog may attack, do not scream or run. Most dogs will only sniff you, decide you aren’t a threat, and walk away. Try to remain motionless until the dog moves away, then back up slowly until he/she is out of sight. If the dog does attack, "feed" him/her your jacket, purse, or anything that can come between you and the dog.
  • Animal Shelter

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