Tips for Approaching a Dog Properly
National Dog Bite Prevention Week is May 19 – 25, 2013
- Never approach an aggressive dog, stray dog or one contained in a pen, behind a fence, or in a car.
- Our natural reaction is to help an injured animal, but fearful, hurt animals don’t understand good intentions and may be defensive; call for professional help.
More likely, you’ll be walking in the neighborhood or enjoying family time at a park or public area where pets are welcome, when you greet them and their dog.
- Always ask for the owner’s permission to greet/pet their dog – not all dogs are friendly or like to be touched by strangers.
- Avoid direct eye contact with the dog.
- Approach in a slightly sideways manner, never head on.
- Don’t reach for the dog; let the dog finish the approach.
- Allow the dog to sniff you.
- Remain calm and quiet – too much energy and loud talking can create anxiety and fear.
- Offer your fist, not your fingers first.
- Do not get in the dog’s face or give the dog a hug – do you like strangers hugging and kissing you?
- Pet the dog on the chest, back or sides rather than the head.
Click on this link to see a video on how to properly approach a dog: