This week is National Dog Bite Prevention week. It is a time that organizations like the U.S. Postal Service and other national nonprofitorganizations are using as an opportunity to emphasize the need for responsible pet ownership to prevent dog attacks. People often make light of the “mail carrier/dog” relationship and has been spoofed in many films. However the reality is far from funny or light-hearted, and the fact that dog attacks on mail carriers is increasing could start to affect the way we receive mail in near future.
Letter carriers fearing for their safety due to a loose or unrestrained pet may stop delivery and ask homeowners to pick up their mail at the PostOffice until the pet is restrained. In cases where a carrier sees a dog roaming and can’t discern where it resides, delivery could be interrupted to the entire neighborhood.” From this statement, we can see that the U.S. Postal Service is taking the issue very seriously, and whether aware of it or not, people are highly dependent upon receiving their mail daily. This could affect the way they communicate, pay bills, receive important medications, etc. So it is all the more important to ensure that pets are properly restrained.
Another fairly well known fact is that children are far more susceptible to dog attacks than adults. In fact, they are three times more likely to be attacked or bitten by a dog, according to Prevent The Bite (PTB) President Kathy Voigt. A very valid point that she made was that “education is essential to keeping children safe from dog bites.” Voigt’s daughter was mauled by a neighborhood dog and the attack prompted the create of PTB which promotes dog bite prevention to young children. While this organization exists, it’s important that parents also educate their children of the very real dangers of stray and improperly restrained dogs; not all friendly-looking dogs are friendly. American Academy of Pediatrics President Dr. Robert Block added, “Parents, please don’t ever leave a young child unsupervised around any dog, even a dog well-known to your family.” Children may be innocently unaware that they are teasing or hurting a family pet and inadvertently putting themselves in harms way. I think Dr. Michael Neumeister, president of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons said it best, stating “Even the friendliest dog may bite when startled or surprised. Be cautious. Once a child is scarred, they are scarred for life.”
It is vital that we all do our part to properly restrain our pets, and if we see a stray or loose dog, do that right thing by contacting the proper authorities before it’s too late. Feel free to check out our other blog posts on dog bites and what you can do to prevent them, and if you have other concerns about Georgia personal injury claims, take a look at our YouTube channel for all of the answers to your most important legal questions.
Be informed. Be aware. Be prepared.