Why does a dog bite and how can you avoid it?
“Barking dogs don’t bite” they sometimes say, but still barking can be a harbinger or signal that precedes a bite. It is important to approach a dog as safely as possible. Reasons for biting can be aggression, fear, territory-related matters such as protection of food, drink or the presence of other animals, irritability or due to illness or disease, eg joint pain. When a dog is planning to bite, there are often signs such as growling and barking in advance. When you have been bitten it is always important to contact your doctor. It is important to educate your dog. This can be done independently or through a dog school.
Why does a dog bite?
For the most part, there are five main reasons why dogs bite:
- territory related matters such as protecting food, drink or the presence of other animals
- due to condition or disease, e.g. joint pains
From the moment the dog is only a puppy, it can already bite. Puppies mainly bite out of playfulness and enthusiasm. When fearful, they are more likely to withdraw than bite.
How can you approach a dog safely?
The ideal situation to approach a dog is when there are no other people or animals around, the food and drink is finished and he is lying or sitting quietly awake on the floor. From then on, there are very few threats that can cause the dog to become anxious and / or feel threatened in its territory. Also, make sure you never approach the dog from behind. A dog can suddenly bite by shooting. If you gave him a leg or toy beforehand, make sure it is not close to where you are approaching him. Reaching out to pet him can quickly cause him to become aggressive and possibly bite you.
What signals does a dog give when it starts to bite?
Dogs often give signals in advance when they want to be left alone. For example, they can growl slightly when you get closer, they run away from you or they suddenly lie behind something. Even if you pet a dog and he does not want this, it will in many cases growl slightly. It is best to leave your dog alone at those times. Don’t intervene when a dog growls and acts aggressive towards another dog, for example because there is food nearby. If you want to pull the two dogs apart, you may well get a big bite.
Even when a dog barks, this means that they are hunted for a while or are afraid of something. So leave them alone at those times and don’t get too close.
Bitten by a dog?
Contact your doctor
Many people decide not to go to the doctor for a small bite and only to disinfect the wound and put a plaster on it. Nevertheless, it is recommended to contact your doctor immediately after a bite. Do this especially if you are older than 65, if your child has been bitten, if you have a disease such as diabetes, have a remarkably large wound or if you have had a bite in the face. Even during pregnancy it is wise not to take any risks and see a doctor immediately. You can avoid many different types of bacterial infections, including tetanus, by intervening quickly.
National Geographic Research (2014) on the Most Dangerous Dog Breeds
Research by National Geographic (2014) showed that the following dog breeds could be the most dangerous
- German shepherd
- Siberian husky
- Alaska Malamute
- Chow chow
- Dogo Canario
Train your dog independently or through dog school
A disobedient dog, and thus a dog that has not been properly raised from puppyhood, will bite faster than the other way around. Teach the dog to go to the bathroom outside and let him also do tricks such as giving a paw when he gets a biscuit. Also make sure that you unlearn biting (from the moment the dog is a puppy) by saying foo, for example, and when you go for a walk you must unlearn from the start that it is pulling on the leash. It is important that you are in control of your dog. Once you have this control, the dog will be much less likely to engage in aggressive behavior and will generally be tamer. When training your dog seems difficult, it can be interesting to enroll in a dog school.