According to the CDC (Center for Disease Control), approximately 4.7 million dog bites occur in the United States each year. Dog bites can result in big lawsuits, so here are a few tips for preventing them. Many states don’t even require that previous aggression be proved in the dog and there are few cases where you can claim the victim provoked the dog. In any case, prevention is the best way to go.
Secure Your Pooch
Ensure that your dog is properly secured. Keep fences in good repair to prevent potential escapes. Keep your dog leashed and controlled by a responsible person whenever he/she is not fenced in or behind closed doors. Do not allow your children to take the dog for a walk alone, and never leave young children alone with a dog. Children may not understand what might provoke the dog into biting, even if the dog has never shown any aggressive tendencies. Make sure your dog’s leash is less than 6 feet, so that you can control the dog. Anything longer might compromise your control. Consider using a muzzle in situations where your dog might feel overwhelmed or be provoked into biting.
Obey All Applicable Laws
Obey leashing laws, licensing laws, and any other laws your state might have. Make sure that your pet is up to date on vaccinations. Spay or neuter your dog. Studies show that dogs that have not been neutered are much more likely to bite than those that have been fixed.
Take your dog to obedience training. Practice consistently with your dog, so that you know he/she will follow orders in potentially dangerous situations. Socialize your pet, so that they will do well when interacting with new people and other dogs. Socialization is one of the most important things you can do for your pet.
Don’t play aggressive games with your dog, such as wrestling or tug-of-war. Only play non-aggressive games, like fetch. Learn your dog’s body language. You should be able to tell when he/she is feeling overwhelmed, scared, etc. You should also know how to react accordingly to these changes in your dog’s body language.
Check with your home insurance policy and make sure that your dog is covered. In the event of a bite, you’ll want to make sure you are protected. If your dog has bitten someone previously, some insurance companies may refuse to cover them, or will require you to take them to classes to continue insuring them.
The best way to protect yourself from a Dog Bite lawsuit is to prevent it from happening in the first place. If you need affordable, superior legal representation due to a Dog Bite case, contact LeBaron & Jensen today.