Dogs are a big part of life in America, and often an integral experience while growing up. Although dogs are generally gentle and friendly, they may be accidentally provoked by human behavior, especially among children.
What is the specific danger of dog bites for children?
More than one-third of U.S. households own a dog, meaning there are around 70 million pet canines in the country. Dogs bite around 5 million people per year, and around half are below the age of 18. Nearly a third of those children are age 2 or less.
Why are children specifically susceptible to dog bites?
Children are often more impulsive and do not pay proper attention to safety around dogs. Infants are especially prone to accidentally provoking a dog's instinct to self-defense.
What can be done to prevent dog bites to children?
The most common and safest solution is to keep babies and young children away from dogs, especially large and aggressive ones. A good long-term solution is to carefully supervise children around dogs until they become accustomed to safe handling. "Parents should take more precautions as the child becomes curious about the dog, and the dog tries to explore the toddler," said a doctor.
What can I do if my child has been bitten by a dog?
"When kids get bitten, especially in the face, it can cause long-term cosmetic problems and scars," the doctor noted. A lawyer can often help determine if financial damages in a lawsuit or settlement are an option to help a child's recovery after a dog bite.