In an alarming revelation, Dogs Trust, the eminent dog welfare charity, stated that a staggering 91% of dog bites involving children transpire in the household, involving a familiar canine. This startling figure, however, does not imply that these instances are inevitable. The organization stresses that the majority of dog bites are avoidable and can be significantly reduced with vigilant supervision.
To further this cause, Dogs Trust is now offering parents and caregivers a unique, free masterclass, ‘Living Safely Together.’ The program aims to impart essential knowledge on how children and dogs can harmoniously and safely coexist. The comprehensive curriculum includes understanding canine body language and engaging in activities that both dogs and children can appreciate.
While the companionship between children and dogs often paints a joyful picture, it is important to acknowledge the potentially hazardous situations that can spontaneously arise. Accidental harm can be inflicted on both parties, with dogs resorting to biting if they feel threatened or cornered, even in a familiar environment. It is essential to remember that any dog, regardless of its previous behavior, can bite under stressful circumstances. This underscores the importance of never underestimating the possibility of a familiar dog biting, especially since the home environment accounts for 91% of such incidents involving children.
The article then delineates a three-step method to promote safety when children and dogs share the same space, highlighting the significance of understanding a dog’s body language, recognizing and encouraging safe behaviors around dogs, and cultivating routines and habits conducive to the happiness and safety of both parties.
Dogs Trust’s ‘Living Safely Together’ masterclass is available for free and conducted virtually, enabling a wider reach. This is a major step toward reducing the incidence of dog bites at home, emphasizing the organization’s commitment to enhancing the bond between children and their canine companions while ensuring the safety and well-being of all involved.