At pups4sale we have just come across a great website for teaching dog-bite prevention, thanks to a tip from Australians for Responsible Dog Ownership. The site is known as Doggonesafe and has lots of excellent advice and resources for teaching adults and children how to prevent dog bites.
Below we’ve reproduced a selection of the advice available on the site in question, for the assistance of our members. They’re easy to remember tips that are also easy to pass on to children. It’s not only our own children dog-owners need to be responsible for either. In this day and age where people can get sued for just about anything, if your little John or Jane has a friend over and the friend takes liberties with your dog, resulting in a bite, not only can your four-legged family member be seized and destroyed, but you can also be liable for many thousands of dollars in legal fees and compensation claims.
The image in this post shows a classic example of how to appear non-threatening and plain old uninteresting to a dog that rushes up to you. The technique is called “Be A Tree” and is described further in the list below:
The 3 Most Important Things to Teach Your Kids:
Dogs Don’t Like Hugs and Kisses – Teach your kids not to hug or kiss a dog on the face. Hugging the family dog or face-to-face contact are common causes of bites to the face. Instead, teach kids to scratch the dog on the chest or the side of the neck.
Be a Tree if a Strange Dog Approaches – Teach kids to stand still, like a tree. Trees are boring and the dog will eventually go away. This works for strange dogs and anytime the family dog gets too frisky or becomes aggressive.
Never Tease a Dog – and never disturb a dog that’s sleeping, eating or protecting something.
The 2 Most Important Things Parents Can Do
Supervise – Don’t assume your dog is good with kids. If a toddler must interact with your dog, you should have your hands on the dog too. Even if your dog is great with kids and has never bitten – why take a chance?
Train the dog – Take your dog to obedience classes where positive-reinforcement is used. Never pin, shake, choke, hold the dog down or roll the dog over to teach it a lesson. Dogs treated this way are likely to turn their aggression on weaker family members. Involve older children in training the family dog while supervising. Don’t allow children to punish the dog. Condition the dog to enjoy the presence and action of children using positive experiences.
At the DailyDog we’ve also uploaded a video from the above site to our YouTube Channel and Facebook Page. It is three and a half minutes of examples of how the same dog shows different emotions in different situations. There’s no commentary as there’s no need – the non-verbals of the dogs say it all.