FAST FACTS: Avoid the Bite

Approaching-dog-300x216Tips 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:

http://abcnews.go.com/US/video/proper-approach-pet-11394390