Dog attacks affect an estimated 4.5 million Americans annually, and one in five dog bites results in injuries that require medical attention. Children are unfortunately one of the groups most at-risk for a dog bite, and the rate of dog-bite related injuries is highest for children ages five to nine years old. In addition, children are more likely to receive medical attention for a dog bite than adults.
Dog attacks can be extremely dangerous, but the excellent news is they are preventable. For dog owners, the key is making sure your pet receives proper socialization and behavioral training, and children should know how to safely play and live with these four-legged friends to avoid a frightening attack.
In honor of National Dog Bite Prevention Week, which ran from May 20 – 26, OregonLive.com offers these tips to help protect your child and prevent a MD dog attack:
- Teach your child to always ask the dog’s owner if it’s o.k. to pet their pup, and never pet or touch a dog before it has a chance to see and sniff you.
- Make sure your child knows to not go near a dog they don’t know, particularly if it is in a car, behind a fence, or is tethered.
- Tell your child to never tease or chase a dog.
- Never allow your child to play with a dog without an adult present.
- Tell your child to not disturb a dog that is sleeping or eating, or one who is taking care of their puppies.
- Instruct your child on what to do in the event of an attack: tell them to not run away from a dog or scream, and they should try not to make eye contact with the canine. Your child should stand still and, if possible, find something to put between them and the animal, such as a backpack. If a dog knocks them over, they should curl into a ball and put their hands over their face.
The Annapolis dog bite lawyers with the law firm of Alpert Schreyer understand how devastating a dog attack can be, especially if a child is the victim. A dog bite can not only leave a person with severe physical trauma, but mental and emotional distress as well. In the event a dog attack was caused by the owner’s negligence, contact our offices at (844) 632-7274 to see how our legal team can help you receive compensation for your injuries.