During National Dog Bite Prevention Week (April 10-16), a coalition of veterinarians, animal behavior experts, and insurance representatives urge people to understand the risks dog bites pose to people and other pets, and the steps to prevent them from happening.
To assist in these efforts, members of the National Dog Bite Prevention Week Coalition, which includes the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), State Farm, the Insurance Information Institute (Triple I), American Humane and Victoria Stilwell Positively, will host a Facebook Live event at Monday, April 11on 1:30 in the afternoon Central.
The event, moderated by a certified animal behavior consultant. steve valley, will discuss training tips to help prevent bites, how to safely socialize your dog after a period of isolation, and how to recognize the warning signs that a dog may bite. In addition, the coalition will release the latest data on dog-related injury claims. Panelists will also answer questions submitted by the public during the event.
“From adopting new canine companions, to working from home more often, to having more delivery guys coming to the door with packages and meals, many of us have created new environments and routines at home in the last couple of years, all of which can be potentially disruptive to our pets,” says Dr. Jose Arce, president of the AVMA. “But no matter the circumstances, it’s important that we take steps to prepare our dogs for safe interactions inside and outside the home.”
“For thousands of years, dogs have been our best friends, providing us with unconditional love, comfort and protection,” he says. amber batteiger, disaster response and cruelty specialist for American Humane. “Now it’s up to us to be friends with them too, protecting everyone around us – ourselves, our children and our dogs – from the dangers and consequences of dog bites.”
Dogs can bite for many reasons, including improper grooming or lack of socialization. All dogs, even well-trained, well-behaved dogs, are capable of biting when provoked, especially when eating, sleeping, or caring for puppies. Therefore, it is vitally important to keep both children and dogs safe by avoiding dog bites whenever possible. The National Dog Bite Prevention Coalition offers the following tips:
- Never leave children unattended with dogs, even family pets. More than 50% of all dog-related injuries are to children, and for children under the age of 4, those bites are often to the head and neck region. American Humane offers a free online brochure available for families with children called “Pet Meets Baby” that provides valuable information on introducing a new child to a home with a pet, or a new pet to a home with a child.
- Make sure your pet is healthy. Not all illnesses and injuries are obvious, and dogs are more likely to bite if they are sick or in pain. If you haven’t been to the vet in a while, make an appointment for a checkup to discuss your dog’s physical and behavioral health.
- Take it easy. If your dog has been interacting primarily with his family since he brought them home, don’t rush him to crowded areas or dog parks. Try to expose your dogs to new situations slowly and for short periods of time, arrange for low-stress interactions, and give plenty of praise and rewards for good behavior.
- Learn about positive training techniques and spend time interacting with your dog.
- Be responsible when approaching other people’s pets. Ask the owner’s permission before approaching a dog and look for signs that the dog wants to interact with you. Sometimes dogs want to be left alone, and we need to acknowledge and respect that.
- Be sure to walk your dog on a leash and be aware of changes in your dog’s body language when he’s uncomfortable.
- Always monitor your dog’s activity, even when he’s in your own backyard, because something can scare him out of the yard and possibly injure someone or himself.
“Part of my job as a dog trainer and behavioral expert is to empower people with knowledge about the dogs they share their lives with,” she said. Victoria Stillwell, famous dog trainer and behavior expert. “And it’s this knowledge that not only enriches the relationship between dogs and people, but also helps reduce the likelihood of bites occurring.”
In addition to the potential physical and emotional injuries, dog bites can be costly. Janet Ruizdirector of strategic communications for the Insurance Information Institute, reported that in 2021, the number of claims for dog bites and related injuries was 17,989, an increase of 2.2% from 2020 with a total claims cost of $882 million and the average cost per claim of $49,025. The average cost per claim decreased for the first time in 10 years by 1.1% from 2020. California, Florida and Texas had the most claims. “Education and training of owners and pets is key to keeping everyone safe and healthy,” Ruiz said.
In 2021, State Farm paid more $161 million dollars for more than 3,260 dog-related injury claims. Those could be dog bites or they could also be injuries from a dog accidentally knocking someone down the stairs or off the sidewalk.
“As the nation’s largest property insurer, State Farm is committed to educating people about the responsibility of pet ownership and how to safely interact with dogs,” he said. heather paul, public affairs specialist for State Farm. “It’s important to recognize that any dog, including those in the home, can bite or cause injury. Every dog has a unique personality, and while breed or type may determine how they look, a dog’s reaction is not guaranteed by those qualities”.
“While dog bites are a serious public health concern, the good news is that most dog bites are preventable,” said AVMA President Dr. Arce. “By taking steps to properly train and socialize our dogs, and by educating ourselves and our loved ones about dog bite prevention, we can help reduce bites and keep dogs in loving homes, where they belong.”
For more information on dog bite prevention and National Dog Bite Prevention Week, visit AVMA.org/DogBitePrevention.
Serving more than 99,500 member veterinarians, the AVMA is the leading national representative of the veterinary profession, dedicated to improving the health and welfare of animals, humans, and the environment. Founded in 1863 and with members in every US state and territory and in more than 60 countries, the AVMA is one of the largest veterinary medical organizations in the world. Informed by the unique scientific training and clinical knowledge of our members, the AVMA supports the crucial work of veterinarians and advocates for policies that advance the practice of veterinary medicine and improve animal and human health.
About State Farm®
For 100 years, State Farm’s mission has been and continues to be to help people manage the risks of everyday life, recover from the unexpected and realize their dreams. State Farm and its affiliates are the largest providers of auto and home insurance in the United States. Its more than 19,400 agents and approximately 53,400 employees serve more than 87 million policies and accounts, including auto, fire, life, health, commercial policies and financial services accounts. Commercial auto insurance is available, along with coverage for renters, business owners, boats and motorcycles. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company is the parent of the State Farm family of companies. State Farm is ranked 39th on the 2021 Fortune 500 List of Largest Companies. For more information, visit http://www.statefarm.com.
About the Insurance Information Institute (Triple-I)
Founded in 1960, Triple-I, an affiliate of The Institutes, provides objective, fact-based insurance information while being a trusted source of unique, data-driven information that informs and empowers consumers. Triple-I wants people to have the information they need to make informed decisions, manage risk and appreciate the essential value of insurance.
About American Humane
American Humane is the nation’s first national humanitarian organization. Founded in 1877, American Humane is committed to ensuring the safety and well-being of animals, and our leadership programs are the first to serve to promote and nurture the bonds between animals and people. To learn more or support our work, visit www.americanhumane.org and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
About Victoria Stillwell
Victoria Stilwell is a world-renowned dog trainer and behavior expert, best known as the star of the international hit television series. is it me or the dog (Animal Planet, USA). Having filmed over 130 episodes since 2005, Stilwell reaches a worldwide audience with his philosophy of positive and humane dog training methods. He also served as a judge of best american dog (CBS) and as a behaviorist on camera for dogs can fly (Heaven One) and the a show (BBC1). He recently created, produced and narrated the popular nature series, Dogs With Extraordinary Jobs (Smithsonian Channel).
Stilwell is the founder and president of the Victoria Stilwell Academy for Dog Training and Behavior, the world’s leading dog trainer educational institution, creating new generations of positive dog trainers and enhancing “The Future of Dog Training.” She is the author of four bestselling books: It’s me or the dog: how to have the perfect pet, positively educate your dog, the secret language of dogs and The Ultimate Guide to Raising a Puppy. His website www.positively.com is a popular destination for dog lovers around the world.
A regular guest on talk shows, news and radio shows in the US, Europe and Asia, Stilwell has received multiple international awards and honors. She was the resident pet expert on CNN’s HLN and has been a regular columnist for several magazines, including the bark, american dog, dog and dogs today. She has appeared in numerous newspapers, magazines and newspapers, including The New York Times, USA Today, cosmopolitan, weather.com, Oprah Magazine, Rachael Ray Everyday, MSNBC.com, Self Magazine, Shape Magazine, The daily mailthe sunday time, Mirror and Sun.
A co-founder of the National Dog Behavior Conference series, Stilwell also serves on the advisory boards of RedRover, The Gray Muzzle Foundation, DogTV, Canine Assistants and the Georgia Pet Coalition, and is an ambassador for the RSPCA and the Soi Dog Foundation. .
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Miguel San Filippo
Media Relations Manager
American Veterinary Medical Association
SOURCE American Veterinary Medical Association