The fatalities due to dog bites have been increasing at an alarming rate, almost doubling in the past ten years. Because of the popularity of dogs as pets in the United States, personal injuries due to dog bites have also increased. Most of the victims are children under fourteen years of age, and what is most surprising is that most of these dog bite victims are owners, neighbors, or friends of the dogs that bite them.
As mentioned on the website of Ravid & Associates, P.C., dog bites and animal attacks are a serious issue. Although there are those that are minor, some major dog bite injuries call for surgeries, further treatments, and long rehabilitation. And because of the ferociousness of animals, emotional trauma can also be experienced. To avoid such complications, here are some ways to understand dog behaviors and avoid being possibly bitten:
Don’t approach a dog that is showing signs of aggression or extreme protectiveness. Dogs are very protective of their property, and their “property” can be anything from toys, food, territory, and even their masters. It is always best to approach a dog and its territory with caution and start early in teaching dogs about possessive behaviors. A scared dog is very susceptible to biting. Unfamiliar faces, situations, and places can be overwhelming to a dog, therefore it can stress them out and make them nervous. Train your dog to be calm and comfortable with different situations and unfamiliar places, and avoid startling dogs to prevent them from biting as a defense.
Make sure that your dog does not have any physical injury. This is because pain can cause discomfort in a dog, making them aggressive or protective of themselves. Handle injured dogs carefully, and avoid touching any sore areas. A nursing female dog can be too protective of her pups, therefore it is important to keep away from their space unless needed. Handle newly-born pups with care, and put the mother and young pups in a clean and secure area.
Natural dog instincts can take over a dog, such as their hunting drive. Some dogs still have a strong drive to hunt, and when hyperactive they can attack people they mistake as prey. Running away from a dog is not advised; it is much safer to keep your ground, and stand tall but not look directly into the dog’s eyes. When knocked over, curl up with your arms covering your ears and neck, and let the dog sniff you until they lose interest. Dogs are generally chosen as pets because of their loyalty to their masters, and their ability to watch over and protect them. They are the favorite among children, which can expose them to dangers if they are not well-educated on how to properly take care of their dogs.
Understanding canine behaviors can greatly help in preventing any incidents that can lead to injuries. As The Seegmiller Law Firm can attest, dog bites are among the rising causes of personal injury cases; prevention through understanding dog behaviors is one way to keep ourselves safe from such dangers and legal complications.