KEEPING CHILDREN SAFE FROM DOGS WHICH BITE
DOGS WHICH BITE
We hear many times after a dog bite (or attack) that "There was no warning, it just flipped”. Although this is true of dogs which have either been trained to fight, or have lived under intolerable circumstances of abuse or downright cruelty, and have either escaped, or an unwary person has inadvertently encountered the dog, no well-balanced dog bites without reason,so do not give them a reason to bite.
They WILL have given the warnings (often many, in quick stages), which have not been recognized.
The reasons for a dog to bite are many, but if you do not put yourself in the situation where you could be bitten, you will not BE bitten. So, if a dog is bounding up, do not make eye contact, which will be seen either as an invitation or a challenge. Do as dogs do – turn your head away, until the dog has come up to you,then (if he has not jumped at you – in which case cross your hands across your chest out of reach and keep turning away from the jumping), if he is just waiting for your response, slowly move away, studiously avoiding looking at the dog at all.
Tell children never to approach a dog. If the dog is with its owner and the owner says it is friendly and you can approach him, do not take their word for it. Stand at least three feet away, make warm eye contact and invite the dog to join you. If he does not, it is because he does not want contact. Respect this and do not approach– he is telling you that he does not want interaction with you, so if you ignore the tacit, non-aggressive, warning and go into his space .....
Never allow children to play unsupervised with the family dog, they cannot know how near the end of his patience the dog has become, so keep the games low key and watch your dogfor signs of stress at all times. Take control before the dog has to take matters into his own paws.
If there are excited,uncontrolled dogs in an area where your children want to play – find another area (or keep the children close to you). Dogs are much quicker on their legs than we are, and you cannot move fast enough to protect your child if a dog has made a beeline for it.
Do not allow all and sundry to lay hands on your dog – you wouldn’t allow it for your young children, so give your dog the same care. Just because he is cute an love-able does not mean that all can touch him. Dogs often appear excited and bouncy at the approach of strangers – often this is a manifestation of stress,not a desire for contact.
You must take responsibility for your own dog – you cannot control the actions ofothers. If you are observant and protect your dog from stressful situations, he will learn to trust that you are therefor him, and will look to you to deal with uncomfortable (for him) scenarios,and will not need to deal with it himself.
OCTOBER 21ST, 2015 @ 11:14:25 BST