We have some aggressive dogs that live in our neighborhood. They sometimes get out of their yard and wander around. I’m so worried that someone will be bit! What should we do to stay safe around these dogs?
Worried about aggressive dogs in Woodland Heights
You’re right to be worried. Did you know (according to www.dogbitelaw.com) that dog bites send more than 898 people to the hospital per day? The Greater Houston area sees its fair share of dog bites, so BARC has released some tips and suggestions for avoiding a dog bite and also how to react in the event of a dog bite.
“All dogs may potentially bite and it’s important to always be aware of that,” BARC spokesman Chris Newport said. “Dog bites are not exclusive to any breed or size of dog. By following these dos and don’ts, your chances of being bitten could greatly diminish.”
- Be alert and aware while in the presence of an unknown dog.
- Remain relaxed and look for warning signs of aggression in the dog (such as raised-fur, teeth-shown, tail up and held in place, etc.).
- If knocking on the door of a person who might have a dog, create space between yourself and the door, in case the dog comes out the door.
- Leave a child unattended in the presence of an unknown dog.
- Pet or give an unknown dog food.
- Touch a sleeping dog or approach a dog when puppies are around.
- Chase or bother a dog while it’s eating.
- Get between a dog and its owner.
- Try to break up a dog fight with your bare hands. Instead spray with a hose or use a broom or other long object to separate the dogs
If you’re attacked by a dog, here’s what BARC suggests that you do:
- If you can, substitute something else (aside from your body) for the dog to bite down on, such as a stick or a notebook.
- Once bitten, resist the urge to pull back. This will only increase the damage to your person and possibly excite the dog further.
- If you’re able to remove yourself from the dog, square your stance and firmly say “no” while slowly backing away from the dog.
- If all else fails, go limp, curling up into the fetal position and protecting your head and trunk with your arms and legs. When possible, immediately wash all wounds and call BARC (at 713-229-7300 or dial 311) to report the attack. State law dictates that all bites be reported.
Do you have a question for Tabby? If so, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pet of the Week
This 5-year-old mixed breed was found wandering around a neighborhood and had the good fortune to be taken in and fostered. In his foster home, Wally is learning some basic training and home manners. He’s super sweet, eager to please and enjoys treats, so he’s been a quick study so far. While Wally isn’t a fan of cats, he’s comfortable around other dogs. If you’d like to learn more about Wally, go to www.friends4life.org.