Learn how to prevent dog bites before they happen. Safety is extremely important for everyone living with dogs, as well as for everyone that gets near a dog. Meaning EVERYONE!
The truth is that a big number of people are being bitten by dogs every year. Some of these people, especially small children, are so hard bitten that they are admitted to hospital.
Unfortunately, people have even died from dog bites.
For that reason, it is extremely important to have all the dog bite safety information you can get and learn how to prevent dog bites.
If a dog comes running to your place and you fear it might bite you, what would you do? Your instinct may say "RUN" but this is a HUGE mistake!
There are many factors that can make dogs bite, even their owners. Here are the most common reasons:
- Fear is a very common reason for this behavior.
- The dog is protecting its territory.
- Or protecting its owner.
- It is very possessive (with food, toys etc).
- It has been trained to do so. Unfortunately, there are people who train their dogs to be aggressive.
- The dog hasn’t been properly socialized around other people or animals.
- Maternal Instinct.
Of course there are. The body language before a dog bites is very clear and can tell you if you are at risk.
Be very careful if you find yourself around a dog that shows the following signs:
- The dog’s ears flatten backwards, closely against the head or are pushed up forward.
- The dog’s nose is wrinkled and it reveals its teeth .
- Starts growling and snarling.
- Starts barking, and baring its teeth.
- Hair is raised up and the tail is held high.
- The animal's body appears tense and the legs stiff.
- The dog lowers his tail but keeps it firm and wags it slowly.
- She gives you a direct intense eye contact.
- Tries to avoid your touch.
In my opinion, nine out of ten times a dog bite safety issue emerges it is not the dog's fault. And that is because so many people don't really know how they should behave around dogs and how to prevent dog bites.
Do's and Don'ts
NEVER approach a strange dog laying your hands to pet him. Especially dogs that are chained or behind fences.
Always require permission from the owner before petting a dog you just met.
Don't assume that all dogs must love you! Dogs
have their own personality and the right to like or dislike someone.
Give them time to come near and sniff you.
Avoid touching dogs you don't know on the head. It's best to gently pet them on their back.
SHOW RESPECT. Don’t disturb a dog that is eating or sleeping.
Be extremely careful when you are around a mother
dog and her babies. She can become very protective with the puppies and
bite you if she feels that her babies are being threatened.
Sick dogs and dogs that are in pain could bite if approached in an inappropriate way or if you touch the source of their pain.
Have in mind that cute small dogs can bite too. The only time I was bitten by a dog was by a small, senior dog I knew. She didn’t hear me approaching, so when I tried to pet her she became scared and bit me. Nothing serious but I have to admit that I got scared too!
More Information On How To Prevent Dog Bites
Avoid playing games like wrestling or tug of war with your dog. Some people find this fun but these type of games set the basis for future behavioral problems and bites is one of them. Don’t allow your puppy or dog to "play" with you using its teeth.
In case you see one or more dogs coming to you
don’t panic. Don’t run and don’t scream. Stay still, with your hands
attached to your body and remain quite. Avoid eye contact with the dog.
In most cases, the dogs will sniff you and then go away.
However, if the dog attacks you try to give him/her
your bag, jacket, bicycle or anything you can get to attract its
attention. Then curl into a ball with your hands over your head and
remain still and quit until the dog goes away.
Be very careful with small children. NEVER leave a dog, even if we are talking about your dog with babies or children without the supervision of an adult. Teach your children how they should behave around dogs.
Don't get in the middle of a dog fight, unless it is your dogs and you have trained them to obey your orders.
Get away from the dog and ask for help. Don’t try to hit the dog or anything like that as you’ll be in danger of being bitten again.
Wash the wound with soap and warm water.
If there is a skin tear and you can see the marks from the dog’s teeth or the wound bleeds then you should seek for medical advice. A doctor knows best how to take care of your injury.
Do you know the dog that bit you? If it was your dog then I take for granted he or she is always up to date on vaccines. Especially rabies vaccine. If it was a strange dog then ask for this information from the owner. The doctor will certainly need to know about the dog's health condition.
If it was a "soft bite" and there are no marks on
your skin then you probably have no problem. However, you should be
extra cautious in case you notice any unusual sign. Let’s say, you start
feeling discomfort, dizziness or some kind of inflexibility on a finger
or your arm. In that case you should ask for medical advice as soon as
I hope all the information you found in this page will help you protect yourself and answer the "how to prevent dog bites" question fully.
However, dog bite safety is just one of the many dog behavioral concerns.
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