Who among us doesn’t like to pet or play with a cute dog that we are around? There are a lot of people, especially as the weather warms up, that will be out and about and interacting with dogs that may be unfamiliar to us or dogs that we haven’t seen in quite some time. While interacting with a dog that is unfamiliar to us is not necessarily an indicator that that dog will engage in an activity that could lead to a New Haven dog bite injury, it is a good reason to approach these dogs with care and caution.
Dogs, like humans, have emotions and when they can’t express them through words they often express them through actions and one of those actions can be to nip or bite at a human who is approaching the pet. This is an important thing to remember because if you can imagine yourself not being able to speak when a stranger is approaching you can imagine what your response might be. The same holds true for dogs who are unable to speak, but may get into a situation where they are uncomfortable and can only express themselves through negative interactions.
The good news is that you are not helpless, there are signs you can be on the lookout for so you can still approach an unfamiliar dog without putting yourself in danger or realize that you should step back from the pooch to give her/him some space. According to the United States Centers for Disease Control (CDC) some of the signs you should be on the lookout for with a dog include;
- When a dog is scared you should not approach it. A scared dog may be in an unfamiliar setting or surrounded by unfamiliar people. If the dog is scared she/he may be more likely to bite.
- If a dog that you are looking to pet or interact with happens to be eating, you should not approach.
- Imagine if you were sick and someone wanted to play with you, you would be agitated. The same holds true for a dog that who is sick, you should always leave a sick pet alone.
- A mother who is protecting her newborn puppies should always be left alone.
- Whether the dog you’re approaching is playing or just laying with a toy, you may not want to approach the pooch because she/he may be more likely to be aggressive in protection of the item.
Of course humans are different in many ways to a dog, but if you take the things that might set you off into anger or frustration and apply those to the dog, you will be on the right track to protecting yourself from getting into a situation where you will experience a New Haven dog bite injury. Truly a good rule of thumb is to only approach a dog when their owner is ok with it and when the dog appears to be open and welcoming.
There are many serious injuries that can happen as the result of a dog bite and if you find yourself in a situation where you are dealing with one of those injuries you may wish to speak with an attorney who has handled cases like this before. The attorneys in our office are experienced with dog bite injury cases and can work with you to understand your situation and protect your long-term interests.