Dog bites aren’t always preventable, but there is a chance that you can teach your child ways to lower a dog’s aggression and to prevent situations in which an animal, like the family pet, gets too aggressive and begins to attack.
When a dog bites another person, the owner of that dog is held liable for any damages caused. Dog bites can cause puncture wounds likely to become infected, and they can also be incredibly damaging to the bones, tissues, and ligaments.
Around 4 million people are bitten by dogs every year, and around 800,000 of those injuries do end up requiring hospitalization. Is it possible that some of those bites could have been prevented? Absolutely.
Dogs are pack animals, and they often act out of instinct. Dogs are likely to treat children differently than adults; a child’s smaller size may make a dog think it’s superior and has the right to snip or bite. The dog may become territorial or possessive, posing a risk to those around it.
Young children may not understand boundaries when it comes to dogs. They may want to pet, stroke, or play with the dog, but if it’s not acting calm and is feeling stressed, aggressive, or scared, then it will be more likely to bite.
Most dog bites are caused by dogs familiar to a child. Remember, if a small child runs, a dog may think of him as prey. If a child hits or pulls on a dog, it may bite to defend itself. No animal should bite a child, and the owner can be held liable, but remembering to explain to children that they should not disturb an eating dog, should not run from approaching dogs, and should always at least allow the dog to sniff them before petting it will help prevent biting incidents.
Source: Cesar’s Way, “Protecting children from dog bites,” Edward P. Buchanan, MD, accessed June 15, 2016