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Supervise children playing with dogs, doctors advise

Hunter's_owner
February 23rd, 2007, 02:14 PM
http://www.cbc.ca/health/story/2007/02/23/dogs-children.html

Children should not be left alone to play with man's best friend and should be taught how to approach the animals, British doctors say.

Last year, 4,133 people in Britain were admitted to hospital for dog bites almost double the number treated in 1996. More than one-fifth of the victims were children under nine.

In Saturday's issue of the British Medical Journal, medical microbiologist Marina Morgan and plastic surgeon John Palmer of Royal Devon and Exeter Foundation Trust in the UK reviewed dog maulings.

They concluded that children should be taught not to tease dogs or approach unfamiliar pooches.

Instead, children should:

Treat dogs with respect.
Avoid direct eye contact.
Let dogs sniff them before petting them.
Be closely supervised when playing with any dog.
Not disturb dogs that are eating, sleeping or caring for puppies.
The review also advises doctors on how to examine and treat someone bitten by a dog, including looking for infection such as rabies and when to refer the case to a specialist.

Children should not be left alone to play with man's best friend and should be taught how to approach the animals, British doctors say.

Last year, 4,133 people in Britain were admitted to hospital for dog bites almost double the number treated in 1996. More than one-fifth of the victims were children under nine.

In Saturday's issue of the British Medical Journal, medical microbiologist Marina Morgan and plastic surgeon John Palmer of Royal Devon and Exeter Foundation Trust in the UK reviewed dog maulings.

They concluded that children should be taught not to tease dogs or approach unfamiliar pooches.

Instead, children should:

Treat dogs with respect.
Avoid direct eye contact.
Let dogs sniff them before petting them.
Be closely supervised when playing with any dog.
Not disturb dogs that are eating, sleeping or caring for puppies.
The review also advises doctors on how to examine and treat someone bitten by a dog, including looking for infection such as rabies and when to refer the case to a specialist.

Continue Article

Dog owners also need to change their behaviour, pediatrician and dog owner Rachel Besser said in an accompanying article.

"We must stop placing blame on the dogs themselves and focus attention instead on who holds the lead at the other end or who isn't holding the lead, as the case may be," Besser wrote.

"Most dog bites to children at home happen when the child interacts with the dog in the absence of adult supervision.

"Just as some parents are obliged to take parenting classes, I would like to see equivalent mandatory classes for expectant dog owners, to teach them about the responsibilities of dog ownership."

Veterinarians could also advise dog owners about bite prevention and doctors could promote prevention when treating bites, Besser said

Dogastrophe
February 23rd, 2007, 02:24 PM
What!! You mean it's not the dogs fault when they bite someone who just finished stepping on their tail while tugging on their ears. ;)


It's refreshing to see articles that discuss that it is not always the dogs fault when something happens. Hopefully this will catch on.

Hunter's_owner
February 23rd, 2007, 02:39 PM
It's refreshing to see articles that discuss that it is not always the dogs fault when something happens. Hopefully this will catch on.

Yeah exactly:thumbs up

hazelrunpack
February 23rd, 2007, 02:46 PM
In a way, though, doesn't this just boggle your mind--that people have to be told (again) to supervise kids and dogs?!?! I always considered that sort of a "duh", hit yourself on the forehead kind of thing. It's just common sense.

When I was a kid lo those many decades ago, my parents taught me what to do in response to strange dogs. Any parent that doesn't teach their kids to respect animals...well, I just don't get it.... :shrug: Especially with all the bad press dogs get these days when a mauling or a biting occurs...

Hunter's_owner
February 23rd, 2007, 02:49 PM
Yeah I agree Hazel. It really is common sense, sad that people have to be told:rolleyes:

SARAH
February 23rd, 2007, 03:46 PM
Some seem to think that only the GSDs, rotts, pitts and other "dangerous" breeds have to be watched. I've read a story about a new born being EATEN by two "saussage dogs" (Dachs) because the baby was left unatteded on the sofa where the dogs USED TO be allowed up but were banned from after the baby was brought home!

But hey, people have to be reminded that the coffee they just bought is hot and will scold them if spilled onto the body. Of course they have to be reminded that a dog being the closest relative to the wolf (or fox, coyote, jakal, whatever) can be a risk for human offspring (and adults too at times)

OntarioGreys
February 24th, 2007, 07:51 PM
That majority of dog bites in the US are to children and are not by strange dogs, they are the family pet or a dog they know well. The majority of the time the dog was laying down or resting at the time the child approached it, and the parents are shocked and say the child did nothing to provoke the dog.

There is a good reason for the adage leaving sleeping dogs liie

My son was always taught that when dog is laying down it is resting, he may call the dog to him, but if it does not want to get up, then it wants a time out to be alone, so leave it be. Sadly many parents today believe a dog should be tolerant of children at all times and don't understand even a dog needs to have time just to themselves

lt_danish
February 24th, 2007, 08:29 PM
Yay forward thinking progress. It may be silly to remind people but obviously humans need constant re-enforcement. Its good its in some mainstream media, as people often believe what the media tells them. In this case that would be a good thing!