Dog attacks are not top of mind while taking advantage of and enjoying the nice weather outside. Whether that be playing football in the front yard, an afternoon drink on your patio or walking around the neighborhood. It is all fun and games until a neighbor’s unruly dog comes charging over.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over four million dog bites occur in America every year. Approximately 300,000 of those require emergency medical care. So how do you keep man’s best friend from ruining your time outside?
What if an Aggressive Dog Approaches?
Most animals attack out of fear or uncertainty, an instinct still present, even in domesticated dogs. If you hear growling and notice a dog nearby, do not approach it. This can increase their panic. Stay where you are and try not to make eye contact if the dog comes closer to you. However, if it charges and knocks you down, curl into a fetal position and cover your head and face. Remain as still and calm as possible; the dog may lose interest in you and wander off.
There are also options to keep an aggressive dog at bay should you feel threatened. You can choose from spray repellents to deterrent systems that emit ultrasonic waves to stop a dog in its tracks.
A friendly conversation with the dog’s owner may be warranted to address concerns about the dog’s aggression. If you live within a community governed by a homeowners’ association, there may be specific procedures for these situations. They often have rules and regulations about aggressive pets and how the community handles such cases. Give them a call to see what your options as the concerned neighbor are.
What Happens if a Dog Attacks You?
If the unfortunate happens and you are bitten or attacked, be sure to get the owner’s information. It will be essential to know who is responsible for the dog and whether it had its rabies vaccination. You can also summon city officials or the local humane society to discuss any further action needed, such as quarantine for the animal. Notifying the dog owner’s homeowners’ insurance company is also an important step, as an aggressive animal poses a liability to the community.
By keeping these tips in mind, the great outdoors (even in your backyard) can be a relaxing and worry-free place for all!
Get the Help You Need if a Dog Injures You
While you can consider all of this to stay safe, a dog bite can still occur under certain circumstances. The personal injury attorneys at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye, PLLC, are here to answer questions about your legal rights in the event of a dog-related injury. You can reach our New York offices located in Long Island, Brooklyn, or the Bronx, by phone at 800-469-7429 or use the online contact form to schedule an appointment.