While your pet may be friendly and easygoing around you, many dogs are territorial and very much willing to protect their owners if they perceive a threat is present. Unfortunately, dog bites are a very real risk even in homes where animals have never bitten before.
Each year, 4.5 million dog bites occur, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Of these, about one in five becomes infected or requires medical care. While your home insurance may be in place to cover the costs associated with dog bites, it is much more effective to take steps to prevent them from occurring in the first place.
Who is Most at Risk?
Children face the greatest risk when it comes to dog bites. They are generally most likely to approach a dog. They are also likely to run or create sudden movements that can scare the animal. Additionally, they are most likely to be injured. The second most likely group of people to be bitten are men. Men are seen by animals as more of a threat than women.
How Can You Prevent This?
To prevent dog bites, take a few seconds to consider your home, your pet and who is coming into your home. Then, consider these dog safety tips:
- When a person approaches a dog that is unfamiliar, stand still. Allow the dog to approach and smell you. The key is to remain motionless to not be perceived as a threat.
- Never approach a dog that is unfamiliar unless the owner says it’s okay.
- Avoid teaching your pet to play in an aggressive manner. Even play fighting can create a higher likelihood for the animal to bite someone later.
- Avoid allowing young children to play with a dog without an adult present. Even if the dog is a family pet, the child may pull, poke or otherwise bother the animal, leading to costly risks.
- Avoid trying to take toys, food, water or other items from dogs or puppies. It is always a good idea to keep children away during these times as well.
- Allow dogs to smell your hand before petting them.
If an incident occurs in which someone outside the family is bitten, let your home insurance help cover the losses. However, it is best to work with properly training your dog to minimize these risks.
Keep your home—and your pets—safe. Call Key City Insurance at (760) 241-7375 for more information on Victorville home insurance.