How to Avoid Problems With Dog Bites

by on 27/05/14 at 10:04 am

Your dog is more than a four-legged friend, he is part of the family. If you have recently adopted a pup or have enjoyed your pet for many years, you know you have a great responsibility in taking care of him. More than that, you must help your dog relate well to other people. When you take your dog for walks or out in public to a park or outdoor event, you need to make sure your dog won’t leap forward a nip at somebody. Your dog may act defensively as a means of protecting you and family, but a bite from a well-meaning pet can spell trouble for you later.

It’s one thing if somebody tries to assault you and your dog acts to prevent it. If somebody is walking past you without provocation and your dog rushes that person and bites, you may be liable for any injuries and medical bills that result. It’s important, therefore, to make sure your dog behaves in public and other situations where people visit your home.

To ensure good behavior in your dog, you have a few options. You can work to condition your dog to keep still around people, and also inform those who wish to interact with your dog of any quirks. If your pet appears skittish around strangers, you may wish to curtail the time spent in public, or use less populated paths for walks. Gradually, bring your dog into places where he will see other people, but keep a close reign on him.

When walking your dog, watch his behavior as he comes into contact with others. Does he appear nervous or scared? Keep him close with the leash and assure him of your proximity. A calm demeanor can help your dog feel safe. If people ask to pet your dog, have them hold up their palms so your dog can sniff. This is a dog’s way of knowing people mean no harm.

If you have serious concerns about how your dog will react to a gesture or approach, consider looking into an obedience course. It may prove helpful, too, if your dog is involved in an incident with another animal or person. Having the obedience training may not absolve you of liability, but you can show you took precautions with your dog.

Your dog is part of your family and a friend who wants to protect you. A random lashing out, however, could cause trouble in the long run, but if you’re proactive with training and discipline, hopefully you need not worry about such issues.

Kathryn Lively

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