6 THINGS YOUR CHILDREN NEED TO KNOW TO AVOID A DOG BITE
April 30, 2014
The best way to prevent a dog bite is to educate your children on the potential dangers of dogs, and how to avoid situations where they might be bitten. Children are drawn to dogs, but need to know how to approach them safely. Dog owners have a responsibility to restrain their dog, but sometimes children don’t know when they should avoid contact. There are some simple rules that you can teach them to avoid a dog bite.
1. LOCATION OF THE DOG
A dog should be avoided if it is in an enclosed yard and is alone with no owner nearby. Also, if the dog is tied up or chained, that may be a sign that it is dangerous and should be respected. A dog on a leash with its owner should also be approached cautiously. A chained dog alone should not be approached for any reason.
2. THE TYPE OF DOG
Some dogs are more prone to bite than others. For example, pit bulls are notorious for attacks on children and adults. Larger dogs can be especially dangerous to children, who can be easily outrun or overpowered by the animal.
3. THE DOG’S BEHAVIOR
You can teach your children how to recognize dogs that may be dangerous by their behavior. Dogs that are growling or baring teeth should be avoided. Also, male dogs tend to be more aggressive and dangerous than females.
4. MULTIPLE DOGS
Dogs that are roaming together or in a pack are the most dangerous. They may not have any owner control and can attack as a group. This pack mentality can lead to serious injuries in the event of an attack. Children should never go near a two or more dogs together.
5. APPROACHING DOGS SAFELY
Even if a dog looks friendly, there are rules to follow to avoid a bite. You should never pet a dog that is eating. Don’t allow the dogs teeth to get too close to a child’s face. Don’t shout or scream at a dog, since this may cause fear or agitation. Don’t tease a dog. If a dog is with their owner, always ask for permission to approach or pet the dog. Teaching your children these simple rules will keep them safe from bites that can come even from friendly dogs.
6. NEW DOGS
If you have a new dog for a pet, be sure to teach your children to be careful until the dog is used to its new home. A visiting dog may feel threatened or not be well trained, and can cause injuries to members of the household. Children are especially vulnerable to this type of visitor since they are excited to play with the dog.
Even if your child follows these rules, a dog bite can occur from an unleashed or aggressive dog. If the owner knew of the danger, they may be liable for injuries and you should consult an attorney about possible remedies. At Schrom & Shaffer, P.C., we can assist you with a dog bite claim.