Posted on Tuesday, September 12th, 2017 at 9:38 pm
We adore our pets, and we treat them like family. However, it’s important to remember that they are still animals, with animal instincts, and can pose a threat in certain circumstances. Thousands of people are bitten by dogs in Georgia each year, and while many of them don’t walk away with serious or life-threatening injuries, some do. There are many factors that contribute to whether a dog is likely to bite, including the physical and mental health of the animal. Dogs who are ill, injured, starved, abused, anxious, or feeling threatened may pose greater risk. Our behavior is the other major player in a dangerous dog incident, and we are more likely to be bitten if we don’t acknowledge or respect the animal’s space or body language.
When it comes to dog bites, prevention is key. Many serious dog bite injuries could have been prevented, had the person been educated and aware of the situation and how to keep themselves safe. If you, or your loved one, is out and about, and encounters a dog, here are a few things to keep in mind:
- Pay attention to the dog’s appearance and demeanor
Often, we can tell if an animal is not looking or acting healthy. Remember that sick and injured dogs are more likely to bite, so look for signs of neglect, abuse, or starvation. Use extreme caution around animals that are emaciated, have missing fur or infected skin patches, or otherwise look unwell.
- Don’t try to “save” dogs on your own
Sadly, abuse and neglect of animals is a common occurrence, but good Samaritans sometimes put themselves in harm’s way when trying to help. If you observe a dog that is chained up, injured, scared, or neglected, call the proper authorities. Don’t attempt to approach the dog, feed the dog, or pet the dog.
- Honor the dog’s body language
Despite what our popular culture tells us, not all dogs are friendly and sociable. Some dogs need space and quiet, just like some people do. If you come across a dog being walked, ask the owner first before approaching, and if you see a wandering animal, don’t make sudden movements or loud noises. Pay attention to signals, give the dog space, and never put your face in theirs.
Some dog bites can be serious, and even fatal, especially to children. If you have been injured and want an experienced dog bite attorney in Atlanta, get in touch with our firm today and request your free consultation!