Safety first! Kids and Dogs
3 Feb 2013 | Media Release
Dogs don’t arrive with instructions on how to behave around children, and children don’t arrive with a manual on how to behave around dogs! As parents and responsible adults, we need to teach both pets and children how to interact safely with each other.
PETstock have joined forces with Adelaide Veterinary Behaviour Services (AVBS) to present a series of information evenings which will help parents understand the vitally important relationship between children and dogs.
Figures show that the highest bite incident rate does not happen within the family home, but more often in a home of a friend or relative. Dog bites cause distress, injury and sadness to all those around them, especially if the child ends up in hospital. Family & friend relationships can be severed and most commonly the dog either put down or re-homed.
It is not hard to prevent dog bites; it just takes vigilance and commitment from parents, carers and dog owners. The most important thing to remember is that if you can’t actively supervise a child’s interaction with a dog, remove the dog to the safety of another room or yard.
Dr Tracey Henderson and Tracy Bache, the highly qualified team from Adelaide Veterinary Behaviour Services will show you how to recognise the signs and events that can lead to a dog bite.
“Even if you don’t have a pet yourself, your child will constantly come in contact with dogs, be it at neighbours, relatives or friends’ homes or out in the streets and parks.
Most people are surprised to discover that they can learn to read a dog’s behaviour enough to tell them when it is stressed and potentially leading to a bite situation” explained Dr Henderson.
“Also, many people are not having children until their mid 30’s or later – which means there is often an established pet in the home, which is used to being the “only child”. We need to educate parents about safe child /dog interactions” she continued.
Statistics show in the 12 months since June 2011 to July 2012, 44 children under 4 years, attended a major hospital emergency department due to being bitten by a dog. (Dog and Cat Management Board Annual Report 2012)
“With most bites to the under 4 age group taking place in a home, it is essential we get the message out to new parents, in an effort to reduce the incidence of dog bite and the trauma associated with a child needing microsurgery – usually to the face” concluded Dr Henderson.
The seminars will take place at PETstock stores at the following times:
- Parafield: Monday 11 Feb / T: 8121 3338
- Melrose Park: Tuesday 12 Feb / T: 8121 3339
- Allenby Gardens: Wednesday 13 Feb / T: 8121 3337
All sessions run from 6.30pm until 8pm with a 10 minute interval. Bookings are highly recommended.
Available for interview: Dr Tracey Henderson, BSc BVMS MACVSc (Veterinary Behaviour) is one of Adelaide’s leading behaviourist veterinarians with a special interest in Veterinary Behavioural Medicine / M: 0488 038 054
Issued on behalf of the Adelaide Veterinary Behaviour Services (AVBS) by:
Sarah Harris Communications: 0411 755 873
Australia – A nation of pet lovers
Australia is a nation of pet lovers. It is estimated that 63% of Australian households have some type of pet with 53% of households owning a dog or a cat.