April Showers bring May Flowers and then….Dog Bites?

doggone safe logoAccording to new research published in the March 2009 issue of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, rising temperatures leading into, and during the summer months, are correlated with an increased incidence of kids being bitten by dogs. The researchers believe that this is explained either by the fact that there is more outdoor, rough play with dogs in the summer months, or because dogs become more irritable as the temperatures rise. Interestingly, the increased number of dog bites is not related to a greater exposure to unknown dogs. In fact, most of the injuries are caused by family pets (27% of all dog bites). So, the obvious caution…be especially aware of your child’s interaction with dogs as spring turns to summer. Dogs tend to bite cheeks, lips, noses, and ears.

Doggone Safe is a non-profit organization involved in dog bite prevention. Their advice centers on two main points. First, do not hug or kiss dogs. Dogs find face-to- face contact threatening and can act out in self-defense. Teach your kids to pet dogs on the chest or side of the neck. Second, if a strange dog approaches and is becoming aggressive, teach your child to be still like a tree. Dogs get bored with stillness. Too much movement gets them overexcited and more likely to act on an aggressive impulse.

Has your child been injured by a dog bite? Tells us, and others, about your experience and what you’ve learned.

You can read more here and here.

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