Tag: dog bites

All I did was run from a dog

Special effects courtesy of Rot n Wonderland

In honor of Dog Bite Prevention Week, (starting May 15th)  we are sharing reasons why people get bit by dogs and how to prevent it from happening to you.

When you see a stray dog, or if a dog is charging after you, the worst thing you can do is run.  First, you will NEVER out run a dog.  They are faster than you.  If you run, there is a big chance of you getting bit, tackled and attacked.  What you should do if you are charged or if a dog is running toward you is:

STAND LIKE A TREE

Stand still, don’t look the dog in the eye, put your hands behind your back and wait.  It will be scary, but you must wait it out.  The dog will run up to you, sniff you, maybe jump on you, but if you remain calm and still, it will eventually get bored and leave you alone.

If you get knocked down, get into the fetal position.

  1. Knees to chest

  2. Face toward the ground

  3. Interlock your fingers behind your head being sure to cover your ears and neck.

Again, eventually, the dog will get bored and leave.

Image source:  Rot N Wonderland
Special Effects by: Rot N Wonderland

I tried to hug a dog

Special effects courtesy of Rot n Wonderland

All I tried to do is hug a dog

In honor of Dog Bite Prevention Week (starting May 15th) we are dedicating this article to one reason why people get bit by dogs and how to ensure it doesn’t happen to you.

One reason children get bit by dogs is due to hugs.  It makes sense that a child would want to show a dog affection by offering hugs, they were taught that hugs are a sign of affection, after all, we hug each other all the time.  It is important to teach our kids that dogs don’t enjoy hugs like we do.

Dogs see the world in a much different way than we do.  To a dog, a hug is an invasion of space and is very uncomfortable for them.  It is a type of restraint and dogs don’t like to be restrained.

It is also important to know how to read dog body language.  Some signs to look for are:

  1. Body stiffening

  2. Eyes wide

  3. Tongue flicking

  4. Ears pinned back

Instead of hugging, teach your child other ways of showing love to a dog, like:

  1. Petting on the chest

  2. Petting on their sides

  3. They love a nice butt rub too 🙂

Children need to be taught how to properly approach a dog.

  1. Slowly walk up to the owner

  2. Don’t look in the dog’s eyes

  3. Ask the owner if it is okay to pet your dog

  4. If the owner says yes…allow the dog to sniff your closed hand

  5. Once the dog has gotten a good sniff, the child can pet the sides of the dog…nicely

Just remember, no hugs, no bites.

How to prevent dog bites

As a Mesa pet sitter I am  provided with plenty of opportunities to educate pet parents and the general public about how to prevent dog bites when working with shy and fearful dogs. Jenna Trethewey, owner of Play Time Pet Care, says “It’s important to recognize the signs of fear and anxiety in dogs.”

Here are some obvious signs that  a dog is shy or fearful.  Some people may not recognize a dog is fearful or anxious if the dog is exhibiting signs of the slight cower.

Some other signs that aren’t so obvious to the average person that isn’t familiar with dog body language are:

Pet sitting in Mesa has given me plenty of opportunity to observe all of these behaviors. I know that just because a dog is wagging their tail it doesn’t mean it’s happy.  When we are meeting with new dogs we see these behaviors all the time.

Some behaviors that might not make sense:

Get to know dog body language.  It’s a pet parent’s responsibility to know their dog’s behaviors and keep others safe from it.  If you know your dog is food aggressive, keep kids away from their food dish.  If you know your dog is shy and fearful around new people, consult with a professional dog trainer to learn ways to help your dog feel less anxious and how to teach others how to approach, or not approach, your dog.

For more information on dog body language and bite prevention contact us at 480-292-9735 or via email at jenna@PlayTimePetCareAZ.com.