Learn to Avoid Dog Bites

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), there are 88 million pet dogs in the United States, with 45% of households owning at least one. Although the majority of these dogs coexist peacefully with humans, dog bites still present a substantial risk to public health, with more than 4.5 million people being bitten every year across the country.

During National Dog Bite Prevention Week (April 9-15), a coalition of veterinarians, animal behavior experts, and insurance representatives are spreading awareness and providing guidance on how to prevent dog bites.

Delivery Drivers at Higher Risk of Dog Bites

As e-commerce sales have continued to grow, a rise in home deliveries means a greater likelihood of delivery drivers encountering aggressive dogs on their routes. Dog owners must take appropriate steps to prevent these kinds of incidents. Adequate training is essential, as is proper restraint of animals when deliveries are being made. When a stranger approaches your home, dogs can become defensive. Keeping them behind closed doors until after the delivery can significantly reduce the risk of bites.

Helpful Tips to Prevent Dog Attacks

More than 50 percent of dog-related injuries happen to children. Kids often lack the knowledge and experience needed to interpret a dog’s body language. Given the risks, children shouldn’t be left alone with dogs, even if they are family pets. Kids under the age of four are at especially high risk of sustaining bites to the head and neck. For more guidance on keeping kids safe around dogs, see American Humane’s complimentary digital booklet “Pet Meets Baby.”

Even if you don’t own a dog, it’s important to be cautious around them in public. Approaching other people’s pets requires responsibility. Always ask for permission and watch for warning signs of stress or aggression, like growling or raised fur. By being mindful of red flags, you can back off and avoid attack.

Legal Rights of Dog Bite Victims

If you’ve been the victim of a dog attack, know that you have rights. A Virginia personal injury lawyer can guide you through your options for pursuing compensation from the dog’s owner. While nothing can undo the damage done, legal compensation can help mitigate the attack’s long-term damage. For more information, contact the Law Offices of Richard J. Serpe today.