Holiday Dog Bite Risks Abound in South Florida

For many lucky homes, a new puppy will be part of the holiday plans. For others, a constant flow of holiday company will require special consideration for family pets.

Prospective families should do their research and take all of the proper safety precautions to make sure that the transition is as smooth as possible.

According, you can count on a dog marking or having accidents in the first few days, even if he was house-trained. Have pet-specific cleaning products on hand. Also be prepared for other transitional behavioral problems and integrate your pet into the family’s life in stages.

Our dog bite attorneys in Fort Myers understand that getting your new dog acclimated to your home, and your home acclimated to your new dog, can take anywhere from a few days to several months and it is a process that should be allowed to occur naturally — not rushed. The key to helping your new dog make a successful adjustment to your home is being prepared and being patient. First, bear in mind your new adoptee is under a lot of stress. And your new pet has no way to know what’s coming next. It’s a lot to take in even for the friendliest of animals.

As of 2007–2008, there were close to 75 million pet dogs in the United States, living in nearly 45 million U.S. homes. And each and every year, there are close to 5 million Americans who suffer a dog bite injury. About a million of these individuals require medical attention and another 400,000 visit an emergency room.

But there are simple ways to help to reduce these risks.

New Dog Tips:

-Get professional advice beforehand. Make sure you choose a dog that meshes well with the individuals in your home.

-Take it slow. Remember that the transition, for everyone, can take a while.

-Don’t feel like you have to always tend to your new dog. Sometimes they just need their own time.

-Limit the amount of company you have over until your new dog is settled.

-Remember that there will be accidents. Some dogs will urinate in unexpected places, while others might to want to chew things.

-A dog is a big commitment, so before you take the plunge, make sure you’re all together on wanting this newest member of the family. Then decide who’s going to be the primary caretaker–otherwise you’ll spend lots of time arguing while your dog stares at his empty food bowl!

-Never allow your young children to play with a dog without proper adult supervision.

-Your dog might be afraid and unsure of his new surroundings. If he appears to be scared, keep him in a small, quiet area (such as a gated laundry or bathroom) to start, and take it slow.

-Consider a crate. Crates make the adjustment period less stressful for you and your new pup. The crate should be big enough for your dog to stand up, turn completely around, and lie down comfortably in.

-Avoid playing aggressively with your new puppy.

-One of the most important things you can get for your dog is an ID tag with your number on it.

If you or a loved one has been injured by a dog, contact Associates and Bruce L. Scheiner, Attorneys for the Injured. Call 1-800-Dial-BLS for a free and confidential consultation today!

More Blog Entries:

Florida Dog Dangers This Summer Season, Florida Injury Lawyer Blog, May 7, 2013
Welcoming Your New Pup Safely into Your Home, Florida Injury Lawyer Blog, January 9, 2013

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