Roughly 4.5 million people experience the pain and terror of a dog bite each year, a truly staggering number when you stop to think about it. There are a number of warning signs that we can pay attention to keep us safe, signs that Dr. Sophia Yin is more than happy to educate us on in this helpful video.
This video illustrates the type of situations that often take place before a dog bites an innocent child. Children are not always well versed in what makes a dog tick and do not recognize obvious warning signs that the dog does not want to be touched. As parents, it is our responsibility to teach them, so that we can bring the aforementioned number of yearly dog bites back down to something a little more manageable.
For example, a dog that is cowering in any way is probably not a dog that your child should be approaching. Dogs tend to cower when they are fearful of a person’s presence and small children have a way of invoking a great deal of fear in dogs. Your child may be very sweet and kindhearted, but a dog has no way of knowing this.
They will strike first and ask questions later, which is why parents need to take the reins and teach their little ones about the signs of fear in a dog.
Some other signs that a dog may be on the verge of an attack: licking lips when there is no food within their immediate vicinity, panting in situations when it is not hot and they are not thirsty, walking around in slow motion, acting in a sleepy or tired manner in the middle of the day and becoming extremely vigilant (a feeling expressed by looking around in multiple directions).
To learn more about all of the warning signs and how to prevent dog bites from taking place, be sure to watch this video in its entirety and teach your child the ABCs of approaching dogs. A is for asking before petting, B is for being a tree if the dog’s excited (remaining still) and C is for a coochie coo on the side of the animal’s neck.