Preventing Dog Bites During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Preventing Dog Bites During the Coronavirus Pandemic

by / Wednesday, 22 April 2020 / Published in Dog Bites, Tips
Small dog on leash looking up at owner

Right now, it’s more important than ever to put safety first in all aspects of our lives. Not only does everyone need to take the appropriate measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus, it’s essential that we do our best to prevent accidents that could potentially lead to serious injuries. With hospital resources being prioritized for coronavirus patients, accident victims may have a more difficult time getting the care they need for their injuries.

Take dog bites, for example. One effect of the coronavirus pandemic is that it has led to an increase of people adopting and fostering pets. And since Michigan’s shelter-in-place order allows for walking dogs and walking for general exercise, there’s a very good chance that people might encounter dogs while they walk around their neighborhoods. People also might have their dogs out with them while they sit on their porches for a little bit of fresh air. With all of these dogs out and about, dog owners really need to be thinking about reducing the possibility of dog bites and injuries caused by dogs knocking people down.

Practice Social Distancing With Your Dog

Whether there’s a pandemic or not, it’s always a good time to practice social distancing with your dog. Exact leash ordinances can vary from city to city, but Michigan law requires all dogs to be on a leash while in public. Keeping your dog on a leash is one of the easiest ways to maintain control over your dog, whether you’re walking through the park or spending time in an unenclosed yard. This is particularly important if you’ve just recently adopted a dog and are still getting familiar with their temperament.

Many people recommend leashes be about six feet long to give your dog plenty of room, but without being so long that it’s difficult to control the dog. Avoid retractable leashes, which can make it more difficult to keep your dog under control.

Say No to Strangers Asking to Pet Your Dog

For dogs, going on walks is important for socialization. By meeting other dogs and people, it helps them get familiar with different situations and, hopefully, helps make them less likely to be aggressive around new people. But at a time like this, if someone you don’t know asks to pet your dog, it’s a good idea to err on the side of caution and say no. Even if you have a friendly dog who normally likes meeting new people, it’s just not worth the risk of someone being bitten or knocked over by an excited dog. Not only is there the risk of the dog injuring someone, letting someone pet your dog could mean they come within six feet of you, putting you at a greater risk of contracting coronavirus.

A dog bite or attack during the coronavirus pandemic can make a bad situation even worse. At Goodwin & Scieszka, we fully understand how difficult a dog bite can be to deal with even in more ordinary circumstances. Our dog bite lawyers are experienced in working with dog attack victims in the state of Michigan and are here to help with your case. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Image: iStock / alexei_tm

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