Each year, more than 350,000 dog bite victims are seen in emergency rooms throughout the country. Injuries sustained from dog bites can be as minor as a few scratches, but oftentimes, dog bites can cause life threatening injuries and lifelong scarring – in addition to any infection bacteria can cause. In this blog, we share a three helpful tips on how to interact with dogs to avoid being bitten.
Most of the time, the dogs you encounter will not be aggressive or want to bite you. The best way to interact or introduce yourself to a dog is to hold out your hand and allow the dog to sniff you. Because dogs are naturally curious, they need to be given a chance to investigate you and your surroundings. Avoid surprising the dog by petting it – they may read this as an act of aggression and the dog may attack in self-defense.
Notice Body Language
Dogs that are tense or anxious will showcase a number of characteristics that may lead to an attack. If a dog has a stiff tail, tense body, or is growling and baring its teeth, do not approach the dog and do not interact with it. If you’re caught in a situation with a dog who seems tense, avoid direct eye contact and do not run. Dogs have a natural instinct to chase their prey and by running, the dog will most likely run after you. Simply slowly back away and firmly tell the dog “go home.”
Because children are at the most common victims of dog bites, they should never be left with a dog unsupervised. Furthermore, children should never approach a dog they don’t know. It’s natural for children to want to play with dogs, but sometimes their method of playing can be read as aggressive behavior. Children should never tightly hug dogs or shove their faces into a dog’s neck. Few dogs actually enjoy this and some may lash out.
Connecticut laws regarding dog bites make animal owners and keepers strictly liable for the injuries their dogs cause. If you’ve suffered injuries from a dog bite, our Fairfield personal injury attorney from the Law Office of Ann Halan Brickley, LLC can help keep animal owners accountable. Call us today at (203) 599-3600.