Dog Bite Injuries – Choosing a New Pet this Holiday Season

With the holiday season, many families will be welcoming a new pup into their home.   The decision to bring home a dog warrants careful consideration. Dogs come in all shapes and sizes, and not all breeds are the same. Some dogs need more exercise than others, and some breeds may be predisposed to living with a family. Some dogs are great for apartments, and some need a little more space to feel at home.

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You’re going to be living with this dog for a long time, so you need to make sure he has a personality you can adore. Do you want a dog that is active, or subdued? A dog that is easily trained, or strong-willed? A dog that is friendly to everyone he meets, or one that is loyal to family but aloof toward strangers? A dog that needs a lot of attention from family members, and lots of activity to prevent him from becoming bored and destructive, or a dog that is content to be left alone for periods of time during the day?

Our Cape Coral dog bite lawyers understand that it’s especially important to make sure you’re careful when selecting a pup to bring into your family when there are kids around.  Dogs bite more than 4 million people every year. And little kids are more likely to be on the receiving end of a canine’s canines.  Almost one in five of those who are bitten, about 885,000, require medical attention for dog bite-related injuries; half of these are children.

People with dogs tend to be healthier and happier, and suffer less from depression, stress, high blood pressure, heart disease, and loneliness than those without. A close relationship with a dog can provide you with years of protection, companionship, and unconditional love.  But you’ve got to make sure that you protect your family and protect your pup.

Most injuries that occur to children involve their head, neck and facial regions. This is most likely due to the proximity of a child’s face to a dog’s mouth. These are the types of injuries that will require extensive surgery and possibly future reconstructive procedures.

New Dog Safety Tips:

-Leave your current dog at home when you pick up your new dog. One of the worst things you can do is to just throw the two of them together in your car and hope for the best!

-Give the dog time to adjust to his new home. The dog is bound to feel insecure and frightened by a change in environment, and a pup may be homesick for his mother or littermates. Show him to his crate or bed, and where to find food and water. Then leave him alone to explore the new surroundings.

-Whichever method of housetraining you have chosen – crate training, paper training or litter box – make sure that all members of the family enforce it consistently. Accidents happen, so have a procedure for clean-up.

-Teach your children to respect the dog and realize that he is not a stuffed toy. He is a live animal that feels pain when hurt, has emotions, and has physical needs that must be met. Kids may unknowingly tease a dog by waving a toy around and snatching it away. Hitting with a stick or pinching an ear may cause a dog to snap, even though the child didn’t intend to hurt. As a rule of thumb, don’t allow children to do to a dog what you would not allow done to a toddler.

-Don’t let your child touch a dog or stand near him during times of heightened excitement—for example, while the dog is eating; when someone comes to the door; or when the dog is barking at a squirrel in the yard or at someone through the window.

Good luck with your new pup and we wish you a safe and happy holiday season!

If you or someone you love has been injured in a dog-bite accident, contact Hollander Law Form at 888-751-7770 for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your rights.  There is no fee unless we win.

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