Posted on Friday, March 31st, 2017 at 7:09 pm
While most of us love and adore our furry friends, there’s no denying that dogs can be dangerous at times. According to the CDC, 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year, many of them children. If you have children and want to keep them safe around animals, there are things that you can do. Teaching yourself, your children, and your community about responsible behavior around dogs can go a long way to prevent dangerous bite incidents.
Here are some great tips that you can use to keep your kids safe:
- Always ask the owner’s permission before approaching a dog. A dog may be shy, aggressive, or recovering from an injury, even while out in public, and these can increase the likelihood of a bite.
- Stay away from strange dogs, no matter the breed. Loose and wandering animals can pose a serious threat, and can also be harboring disease.
- Teach children to be quiet and respectful around dogs. No sudden yelling, jumping, hitting, or running!
- Report any animal abuse or neglect that you see in your neighborhood, and remind your children not to approach, feed, or try to free these animals.
- Emulate calm and confident behavior when faced with an aggressive dog, and show your kids how to safely walk away from the situation.
- If you have your own dog, never allow your children to interact with the dog while they are eating. Animals will instinctively guard their food, and this could lead to a bite.
- Remind kids to keep their faces away from the face of any dog. You wouldn’t like someone putting their face directly in yours, and neither do animals, as this can be interpreted as aggressive and challenging.
- Never push, kick, hit, pull, or tease a dog in any way, no matter how calm the dog seems to be. Teach your children to respect these animals and be gentle with them
- Remember that dogs are not toys! They do not enjoy being hugged, squeezed, ridden, or engaged in roughhouse play.
- If you are ever in an uncomfortable situation with a dog, roll into a ball on your knees, with your head down, and your hands clasped over your neck. Stay still until the dog loses interest, or help arrives.