Pets can be valuable members of your family. When you introduce an animal into your home, help keep everyone safe with these helpful animal safety tips:
- Know the breed of dogs and their disposition. Some dogs tend to bond to one person or family member and become defensive around others.
- Do not try to pet an animal while they are eating, sleeping or caring for their young. Also let them see and sniff you first. Teach children this animal safety approach.
- Teach your children not to provoke or tease a strange animal. Half of all attacks to children are considered provoked.
- Do not hug an unfamiliar dog or other animal, especially around the animal’s neck.
- Always supervise small children that are near animals.
- If an animal attacks, you may be able to decrease injury by feeding them your jacket, purse, bike or anything else that can serve as a barrier between you and the animal.
- If you're knocked to the ground, curl into a ball with your hands over your ears and lie still until the animal goes away. Teach this animal safety technique to children.
- For the safety of all, animals should be leashed or in a fenced area at all times.
Animal safety facts
- Injuries caused by animals are the second most frequent cause of emergency room visits each year.
- There are 5+ million incidents involving animals annually.
- 70% of dog bites are to children under 10 years of age, and 77% of the bites are to the facial area.
- 77% of dog bites are from dogs owned by family and friends and take place in a familiar area.
- 65% of serial attacks and 79% of rampage attacks (biting multiple people during one occurrence) are committed by Pit Bull breeds and Rottweilers.
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The information listed above was obtained from sources believed to be reliable. Nationwide, its affiliates and employees do not guarantee improved results based upon the information contained herein and assume no liability in connection with the information or the provided safety suggestions. The recommendations provided are general in nature; unique circumstances may not warrant or require implementation of some or all of the safety suggestions. There may be additional available safety procedures that are not referenced on this webpage.