Preventing Dog Attacks

As kids get into the groove of being back in school, there's a neighborhood danger that could affect them, if they aren't equipped with the right information. 

Every year, children are injured in dog attacks and that's why people need to know what they can do to prevent them. 

Almost five million dog bite cases happen in the U.S. every single year. 

Local expert Tally Jackson has been training dogs for about 8 years and says dog owners can do a lot to help lower that number. 

"Start off with some training making sure that your dog is properly enclosed if your dog does have any type of aggression issues or anything like that. One thing I would say if I have my dog outside and its around kids I would keep it on a leash to prevent stuff like that." 

Jackson says its important to read your dog's body language. 

"A sign that you can see that your dog is nervous, mainly a lot of people look at the tail, I try to tell people to look at their mouth. As people when we're relaxed our hands are open when we get tense our hands go into a fist, so your dog their mouth tends to close when they are tense." 

"Any dog could be aggressive or bite somebody."

Tally Jackson says one of the most important things to remember is to stand still and *never ever* run from a dog. 

The trainer says that activates a primal hunting urge in the canine.

Over the weekend  two people, including a teen in Delmar, were attacked inside a home by a pitbull.
However, experts say any dog has the potential to strike. 

"Experts say if you find yourself in a situation where you're scared that you might be a victim of a dog attack, you can use what you have on you like a jacket or a bookbag."

"If the dog is off leash, I would try to put my book bag in the front of my instead of on my back as fast as possible. Stand still after doing that and if the dog is charging me like its gonna attack me, I would move that book bag as fast as possible to give that dog a moving target"

Local attorney, Amy Taylor, says all of the dog biting cases she's handled have involved kids. 

But adds the dog isn't always to blame. 

"If there's taunting teasing going on of a pet dog that is not going to help on the victim with the reason being its reasonable if a dog is being taunted teased or abused  that it would act in an aggressive manner."

Jackson advises people ask permission before trying to approach a dog. 

Taylor agrees because in victims of dog attacks in Maryland are partly to blame for the injury they aren't eligible for any money damages. 

With medical bills reaching around $20,000 for the average bite victim's care.

That's a hefty price to pay for not being safe. 


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