In recent years, several cities and states throughout the country have enacted breed-specific legislation, banning people from owning specific breeds - often pit bulls - in the municipality. These laws were created with the mindset that banning those so-called bully breeds would ultimately prevent dog bites and similar dog-inflicted injuries. However, the laws have been met with much resistance from dog owners and bully breed advocates who say that a dog is not inherently and automatically dangerous simply as the result of its breed.
As San Diego well know, it is nearly impossible to protect your child from every potential danger or harm during every minute of every day. As such, it is important to teach your children to protect themselves when they find themselves in harmful situations, or better yet, to remain out of those situations entirely.
When we hear about a dog bite injury involving a child, it usually seems that the attack was inflicted by a neighbor's pet, or by a strange dog that the child has never encountered before. However, in many situations, that is not the case. A large number of dog bite injuries are inflicted by the family pet, and the victims of many of these attacks are children.
According to the Insurance Information Institute, a national insurance industry group, about one-third of all homeowner's liability insurance claims are made in connection with dog bite injuries. Although this percentage has remained constant for about the last decade, however, the average cost per dog bite claim has increased by about 25 percent in the same time period, topping out at $29,000 in 2011.
Every year, about 4.7 million dog bites are estimated to occur in California and throughout the country, with more than half of the victims of these bites under the age of 14. To call attention to (and reduce) this large number, the week of May 21-26 has been designated as Dog Bite Prevention Week in the U.S.
Halloween is a fun holiday for most children, complete with costumes, trick-or-treating with friends and family, and, most importantly, candy. However, the holiday also carries significant potential for danger to children. One common cause of injury on Halloween is a bite injury inflicted by a dog who becomes spooked after seeing little ghouls, goblins, and Sponge Bob Square Pants ringing his doorbell all night.
Often, a dog bite injury involves a long-time family pet and occurs, unexpectedly, in the most normal of circumstances. This is one of those stories. Recently, a mother asked her teenage son to help clean the family dog after he came inside with mud on his paws. The 14-year-old boy attempted to do so, but the dog became spooked when his paws were grabbed. This led to a dog bite close to the boy's left ear. The resulting wound was very deep and the boy appeared to be losing a lot of blood.
Most pet owners consider their beloved cat, dog, or other animal to be a member of the family, much more than just a belonging or a piece of property. As such, we would do anything to protect our pets, and the mere thought of them being harmed or feeling any pain is difficult to take.