According to reports, dog bites are on the rise in Southern California; in San Diego County alone, there were more than 450 cases in 2016. With so many dog bites occurring in the area, experts and dog bite attorneys are trying to do everything they can to teach people, especially children, about the dangers associated with dogs. So far this year, one death from a dog attack has been reported after a three-week-old baby was left alone in a house with three dogs in Michigan.
In a previous blog, we looked at what you can do after being bitten by a dog. Now we look at ways to prevent dog bites from occurring.
How Common are Dog Bites?
According to the Centers for Disease Control, there are between 4.5 and 4.7 million people bitten by dogs in the United States each year. While a vast majority of these dog bites are not deadly, around 30 people a year die from dog bites.
Death usually occurs due to an infection forming in the dog bite wound. One out of five people contract an infection in their wounds, and these can result in death if not treated properly.
In 2016, the deaths of two men in Biola, California were linked to five dogs that may have attacked them. The dogs’ owner is currently on trial, although evidence may point to other animals in the area that may have caused the men’s death.
Who is at Risk?
Due to vulnerability, children are the most likely to be injured or killed due to a dog bite. In addition, children playing with dogs can be unintentionally forceful during play, causing a dog to react violently. Children between 5 and 9 years old are the most likely to be bitten, and this could be attributed to being curious about the animal.
While children are the most likely to be bitten, men are more likely than women to be victims of a dog bite. This could be due to men being the predominant owner of larger, more aggressive dogs.
How do You Prevent Dog Bites?
There are a few basic tips to keep you or a loved one safe from dog bites. These include:
- Stay still when a new, unfamiliar dog approaches you,
- If a dog knocks you down, curl into a ball and cover your ears and neck with your hands; and
- Inform an adult or the proper authorities if a stray dog is in the area.
If a dog does attack you, try to put something in between you and the dog as a barrier. For example, it could be something as simple as a coat, jacket, or backpack. However, if you can get something larger than you should make sure that separates you and the animal. Having a barrier between you and the dog can limit the damage done, if a dog attacks.
Flahavan Law Offices
If you or a loved one has experienced a dog bite, contact Flahavan Law Offices. Flahavan Law specializes in personal injury law and can give you advice on achieving the compensation you deserve. Visit our dedicated page on dog bites or contact us directly. Flahavan Law Offices is here to help with all your personal injury law needs.