Animals In Print
The On-Line Newsletter
31 May 2004 Issue
How To Prevent Dog Bites
An estimated 4.7 million people are bitten by dogs each year, with 800,000 individuals requiring medical treatment. And roughly half of all children in the United States will be bitten by a dog before their 12th birthday. Most of these injuries can be prevented with
responsible pet ownership and appropriate behavior around dogs, say the American Veterinary Medical Association, the United States Postal Service and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which have joined up again to sponsor National Dog Bite Prevention Week. In an effort to help parents educate their children about these proper practices during this annual event, the ASPCA offers the following tips:
* Children should not approach, touch or play with any dog who is sleeping, eating or caring for puppies.
* Children should not pet unfamiliar dogs without asking permission from the dog's owner first. If the owner says it is okay, the child should first let the dog sniff his closed hand.
* If a child sees a dog off-leash outside, he should tell an adult immediately.
* If a loose dog comes near a child, she should not run or scream. Instead, she should avoid eye contact with the animal and stand very still, like a tree, until the animal moves away.
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