Can my dog bite?
A dog in the family provides many benefits to human health and child development. However the risks of injuries due to dog bites are significant.
So-called dangerous breeds
Media and governments often focus on the so-called dangerous breeds. In fact, all breeds of dog have the potential to bite. No breed can be regarded as more likely or less likely to bite. Many factors can influence a dog’s tendency to bite.
A particular threat to young children
Young children between 3 and 7 years old are twice as likely to be bitten as adults. They also have a higher incidence of serious head and neck injuries. Most bites occur within the home by a familiar dog.
Bites are often provoked by the child
In 86% of cases, the bite is triggered by the child. Attempting to modify the behaviour of the child is an important component of bite prevention. The Blue Dog programme has been designed to meet this challenge.
Picking a well-socialised dog
Behaviour problems such as aggression are the commonest reason people give up their dogs to a shelter. When you choose a new dog, it is clearly important to pick a well-socialised dog.