While dogs serve as friendly and wonderful companions, their presence can also provide pet owners with sleepless nights and uncomfortable moments. When your cute dogs become agitated, threatened or scared, they start to act wildly, act defensively and even aggressively act by biting anyone who shows up or threatens them. Dog bites are no longer surprising; according to the American Veterinary Medical Association, nearly 5 million Americans are bitten by dogs annually. And of this number, more than 800,000 individuals require medical attention, and most are children. In short, dog bites are serious issues that require understanding and constant monitoring. For average individuals, it’s best to be careful when walking or passing near dogs, and for dog owners, it’s best to practice responsible dog ownership.
Responsible dog ownership
Dogs are your kids’ best friends so it’s best to understand and observe how your family reacts around the dog, or your dog behaves around family members. If your kids are fearful and apprehensive when the pet dog is around, it is recommended to wait for a time until your family starts to welcome, become friendly and play with the pet. Once your family has established familiarity with the pet, then it’s a good start to enroll your new member of the family in obedience school. A short program can teach the pet with appropriate behavior and follow basic commands, from ‘sit down to come’. But it should be kept in mind that training your dog to behave in certain ways doesn’t end with the training program. Just like learning in humans, it’s best to reinforce these commands by continuously using these commands at home. Know the leash laws or other dog ownership policies in your city, or even in your neighborhood. Some neighborhood will impose restrictions when it comes to dog ownership.
Veterinarians and pet owners also recommended that your dog should be spayed and neutered. Dogs that have undergone these procedures are less aggressive, thus will not act aggressively and not bite. Don’t forget your dog’s overall health- how he feels is directly related to his behavior.
Specific tips to avoid dog bites
Dog bites can be avoided inside the household if there’s a good relationship between members of the household (especially kids) and the pet. It’s best to teach everyone the value of respect, highlighting the need of the pet for space and unwanted agitation. House rules should be in place, like never disturbing the pet dog when sleeping or eating and never threatening the animal.
And when dealing with other dogs, it’s best to approach the dog with caution and when the dog is threatened, just stand still and remain calm. Running or showing aggressive behavior will only increase the chances of dog bites outdoors. If you are knocked to the ground and threatened, protect your face by curling into a ball with the hands over the neck and face.