Dog Bite Prevention Week: May 18 thru May 24
This week kicks off national dog bite prevention week. The purpose of this week is to focus on educating people on how to prevent dog bites. Ironically, last week a young boy from Bakersfield, California was bitten by a dog while playing on his bicycle in front of his house. Thankfully, the family cat came to his rescue. It is quite an amazing story that will surely shed light on this year’s national dog bite prevention week.
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), millions of people, mostly children, are bitten by dogs every year. The Association claims that most are preventable. Unfortunately, most children are normally very comfortable around dogs, so they think that all dogs are cute and cuddly. It is important for parents to teach their children to be careful around unfamiliar dogs.
Often times children suffer from emotional and psychological trauma the most after a dog bite incident. The AVMA has provided a list of some important tips to remember to prevent this:
- Dogs are not dolls or toys. Parents are told to not encourage children to pretend small dogs are dolls. Importantly, most dogs do not like to be carried around or dressed up.
- It is important to tell children to leave dogs and pets alone when they are sleeping or eating.
- Never pull a dog’s ears or tail. And do not climb on them or try to ride them.
- Children should not tease dogs by taking their toys, food or treats.
- Parents are encouraged to foster gentle behavior around dogs.
- Teach children boundaries with family dogs. This means that children should never interfere with the dogs sleeping area, food or crate.
- Avoid unknown dogs.
- Always ask an owner’s permission to pet his/her dog.
The Association also provides some resources to assist parents in educating their children about dogs and preventing bites, including The Blue Dog Parent Guide and CD and the Bilingual Dog Bite Prevention Activity/Coloring Book.
Importantly, in the unfortunate circumstance that a dog bite has occurred, it is important to seek immediate medical attention no matter how small the wound is. Dog bites have a tendency to cause severe and disfiguring injuries, and emotional trauma to victims. If you or someone you know was bitten by a dog, it is important to contact an attorney that has experience with dog bite cases. Florida has specific rules regarding dog bite law and the control of aggressive animals.
Our firm has successfully represented victims of dog bites and we have recuperated money to help the victims pay for medical bills and their expenses related to the injuries. If you have been bitten or attacked by a dog or another animal, an attorney should extensively investigate the facts concerning the animal’s prior history of aggressive behavior, negligence or mistreatment on the owner’s behalf, and a thorough evaluation of the victim’s injuries.
Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net by James Barker