You may start to see a lot more dogs being walked about through the streets of the Elm City this week as the first week of October kicks off National Walk Your Dog Week. Many people will be out, despite the chilly temperatures, walking their dogs to get them some extra exercise before the real chill sets in for the winter. It is for this reason that while you’re walking through the city you should be on the lookout so you don’t get into a situation where you may experience a New Haven dog bite injury.
A dog bite can range in severity, in fact there are actually six levels of a dog bite and if you wind up in the sixth category it will be very serious. If you are in a situation where the dog bite injury becomes so serious that you have to race to the emergency room, which does happen to quite a few people each year, you will wish you had taken some of the steps below to help you and the people you are walking with steer clear of serious injury or death.
When you’re out walking you should follow these tips to stay out of harms way and avoid interrupting a dog’s walk.
Tip #1: If you are approaching a dog that you are unfamiliar with do not approach it in a quick or aggressive manner. When a dog does not recognize you she/he will get nervous and may choose to express that nervous energy through growling or biting.
Tip #2: Never approach a dog (whether you are friendly with the dog or not) from behind. Catching a dog off guard when she/he is least expecting it will cause the dog to take aggressive actions and may leave the dog lashing out at you in a dangerous way.
Tip #3: Do not attempt to feed an unfamiliar dog. Are you the type of person that carries around spare dog treats to give to dogs you run into? This might not be a good strategy if you’re looking to avoid a run in with a dog. While friendly dogs may appreciate it, an unfamiliar dog may perceive a threat and show they are not happy by becoming aggressive.
Tip #4: When interacting with a dog’s owner, do not get aggressive or raise your voice. A dog is often going to defend it’s owner and if you are being aggressive towards her/him you may get a surprise bite when you’re least expecting it.
We are celebrating National Walk Your Dog Week and love to see all of the beautiful pets out and about on the streets of the city, but we also want to make sure that you are protecting yourself against a New Haven dog bite injury by following the tips above. We can share the streets and sidewalks with these wonderful animals and keep the dogs and ourselves safe and free from harm.
If you do experience an injury as the result of an interaction with a dog you may need to speak with an attorney. Contact our office and one of our experienced attorneys will speak with you about your situation and work with you to protect your long-term interests.