An estimated 4.7 million Americans are bitten by dogs each year **1. Through education and awareness, most dog bites can be prevented. Follow these tips to prevent dog bites.
Register your dog with the town you live in. This allows the town to keep track of the neighborhood dogs and ensure everyone is properly vaccinated and cared for.
Some towns provide you with a safety sticker to place inside your mailbox when you register your dog with them. This alerts the postal carriers to a dog on the property. Be sure to place this sticker on the inside of the mailbox (or as instructed; or on the door the mail carrier pulls down to place the mail inside the box. Even if your dog is friendly and has never bitten anyone, it is better to let people know about your dog before something happens.
Place a “Beware of Dog” sign for everyone to see. Even if your dog is friendly, these signs will alert people to a dog on the property.
Some dogs, including certain breeds and older dogs, do not appreciate rowdy children in their presence. Place a fence around your property if this is the case. Small children do not understand boundary and property lines, and might walk right into your yard without warning. Protect yourself and others by putting a fence around your yard.
Always supervise your pets when they are outside. Leaving an unsupervised pet is asking for trouble. Even if your pet is friendly, someone else can walk into or pass by your yard and upset your pet. Keep an eye on your pet and children. Bring everyone inside when you go inside.
Always obey leash laws, no matter how well your dog is behaved.
Because children make up almost two-thirds of all dog bite victims, never leave children alone with a dog.
Keep your dog healthy and current on his vaccinations. If a dog is not feeling well, it could cause him to become annoyed and bite someone he would otherwise be friendly to if he felt better.
Train your dog to obey commands and listen to you. A trained dog who respects her owner is less likely to bite a human.
Teach children to never approach a strange pet without asking the owner first. Supervise them as they approach the dog. Show children how to let the dog smell them first and how to gently pet a dog. Let children know it is not okay to pull ears and tails.
If you are threatened by a dog, do not make eye contact, do not run, and do not scream. Stay as still as possible until the dog realizes you are not a threat and leaves.
If you or your family members are ever attacked by a dog, fall to the ground, curl up in a ball and protect your face. Seek medical attention immediately. If you know the dog or owner, be sure to let the police know about the incident.
Source **1,2 – http://www.cdc.gov