Preventing Dog Bites in Ohio

September 23, 2011

Dog Bites

Dog Bites in OhioDog bites are a serious problem.  Whether a nip, scratch, or bite, a dog attack can cause serious physical and mental injury to the dog-bite victim.  Although anyone can be bitten, the number of recorded dog bite injuries is significantly higher in children than adults.  The elderly and home service providers such as mail carriers and meter readers are also high on the list of frequent dog bite victims.  Although not all attacks can be avoided, there are steps that you can take to keep you and your family safe.

If you are a dog owner, or plan on getting a dog, the American Veterinary Medical Association recommends the following preventative steps:

Carefully select your pet.  Dogs should not be obtained on impulse.  Before and after selection, your veterinarian is your best source for information about behavior, health, and suitability.

Make sure your pet is socialized as a young puppy so it feels at ease around people and other animals.

Wait until your child is older before getting a dog.  Because so many dog bite injuries happen to young children, it is suggested that parents wait to get a dog until children are older than 4 years of age.

Train your dog.  Training will build a bond of obedience and trust between the dog and owner.  Use a leash in public to ensure you are able to control your dog.

Keep your dog healthy.  Have your dog vaccinated against rabies and preventable infectious diseases.  Parasite control and other health care are important because how your dog feels directly affects how it behaves.

Neuter your dog.  Research suggests that neutered dogs may be less likely to bite.

Be a responsible pet owner.  License your dog with your community as required.  Obey leash laws.  If you have a fenced yard, make sure the gates are secure.  Dogs are social animals; spending time with your dog is important.  Dogs that are frequently left alone have a greater chance of developing behavioral problems.  Walk and exercise your dog regularly to keep it healthy and provide mental stimulation.

Be alert.  Know your dog.  Be alert to signs of illness.  Also, watch for signs your dog is uncomfortable or behaving aggressively.

Whether you are a dog owner or not, you can help prevent a dog bite by with the following suggestions:

Be cautious around strange dogs and treat your own pet with respect.

Parents and childcare givers should 1) never leave a baby or small child alone with a dog; 2) be alert for potentially dangerous situations; 3) teach children to be careful around dogs and to never approach strange dogs.

Don’t run past a dog.  Dogs naturally love to chase and catch things.  Don’t give them a reason to become excited or aggressive.

Never disturb a dog that’s caring for puppies, sleeping, or eating.

Never reach through or over a fence to pet a dog.  Dogs can be protective of their territory, and may interpret your action as a threat.

If a dog approaches to sniff you, stay still.  In most cases, the dog will go away when it determines you are not a threat.

If you are threatened by a dog, remain calm.  Don’t scream or yell.  If you say anything, speak calmly and firmly.  Avoid eye contact.  Try to stay still until the dog leaves, or back away slowly until the dog is out of sight.  Don’t turn and run.

If you fall or are knocked to the ground, curl into a ball with your hands over your head and neck.  Protect your face.

Not all dog bites can be prevented, but by following the preceding suggestions you can reduce your chances of becoming a dog bite victim.

If you or someone you know has become a victim of a dog bite in Ohio, please contact us by calling 1-800-297-9191 for a FREE consultation with an experienced Ohio dog bite attorney or send us a Blog Message to schedule a time to talk.

To learn more about dog bites in Ohio and the Ohio Dog Bite Laws, please visit http://www.dogbitesohio.com.

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About slaterzurz

Slater & Zurz LLP is an Ohio law firm of highly experienced and respected attorneys. Over the last 40 years, we have developed a reputation for getting positive results for clients. We've been trusted with handling over 20,000 personal injury cases and our clients have received more than $120,000,000.

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3 Comments on “Preventing Dog Bites in Ohio”

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