This is National Dog Bite Prevention Week. 4.7 million people in this country are bittenby dogs every year. Children are by far the most common victims, and are farmore likely to be severely injured. Mostdog bites affecting young children occur during everyday activities and whileinteracting with familiar dogs.
If you are bitten by a dog, here is a checklist of thingsyou should do:
- If thedog's owner is present, request proof of rabies vaccination, and get theowner's name and contact information.
- Clean bitewound with soap and water as soon as possible.
- Consultyour doctor immediately or go to the emergency room if it's after office hours.
- Contact thedog's veterinarian to check vaccination records.
To help prevent children from being bitten by dogs, teachthe following basic safety tips and review them regularly:
- Donot approach an unfamiliar dog.
- Donot run from a dog or scream.
- Remainmotionless (e.g., "be still like a tree") when approached by anunfamiliar dog.
- Ifknocked over by a dog, roll into a ball and lie still (e.g., "be stilllike a log").
- Donot play with a dog unless supervised by an adult.
- Immediatelyreport stray dogs or dogs displaying unusual behavior to an adult.
- Avoiddirect eye contact with a dog.
- Donot disturb a dog that is sleeping, eating, or caring for puppies.
- Donot pet a dog without allowing it to see and sniff you first.
- Ifbitten, immediately report the bite to an adult.
For more information, Birdneck Animal Hospital recommendsvisiting these trusted websites:
The American Veterinary Medical Association
The Centers For Disease Control And Prevention