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Ways to prevent dog bites

A dog bite can be a painful experience that may leave a victim bleeding, disfigured and with the threat of a transmitted disease. Illinois residents who are unlucky enough to experience a dog bite may have to seek medical treatment, and, depending upon the severity of the harm, they may have to endure surgeries, hospitalizations and vaccination therapies just to start down the road to recovery. It is, therefore, to a person's benefit to understand how to avoid and prevent these potentially dangerous encounters with dogs.

One of the best ways to prevent a dog bite is to ask the owner's permission before attempting to pet or touch the animal. Not all dogs are friendly, and some may not welcome physical contact with strangers. Giving an animal space may help a potential victim avoid a damaging bite.

If a person encounters a dog in a public space that is not under the control of its owner, they should exercise caution to avoid provoking a potentially aggressive animal. They should stand still and avoid movements that may startle the animal. If the animal has initiated an attack, the individual should cover their ears and head with their hands and curl up to make themselves small.

Young children should be watched around animals to avoid the pulls, rips and tears at fur and tails that can prompt dog bites and animal attacks. These suggestions may help individuals avoid harm from dogs, but victims should know that it is generally not their responsibility to stop other people's animals from instigating unprovoked attacks against them. Dog bite victims often have a legal right to be compensated for their losses.

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