(SCHAUMBURG, Illinois) May 15, 2013—Ranking first in dog bites is a title that no community strives to attain. To help reduce the number of dog bites across America, the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) is offering Indiana residents concrete ways to help reduce the number of dog bites in their community during National Dog Bite Prevention Week.
As a partner in National Dog Bite Prevention Week, the United States Postal Service released its 2012 U.S. Postal Service Dog Attack City Rankings. Indiana ranks No. 7 for attacks of postal workers.
“Dogs are wonderful, intelligent and loyal creatures, but they depend on responsible owners to teach them how to behave around people,” said Dr. Douglas G. Aspros, president of the AVMA. “Understanding how dogs behave and how to behave around dogs could save countless people from the serious physical and emotional consequences of a dog bite. The AVMA has a multitude of educational resources and experts available to help individuals and community groups understand how they can help prevent dog bites.”
The U.S. Postal Service issues a list of the cities across the country where the most postal workers have been attacked by dogs, and, for 2012, that list included:
1) Los Angeles, Calif.—69 attacks on postal workers
2) San Antonio, Texas and Seattle, Wash.—42 attacks apiece
3) Chicago, Ill.—41 attacks
4) San Francisco, Calif.—38 attacks
5) Philadelphia, Pa.—34 attacks
6) Detroit, Mich.—33 attacks
7) St. Louis, Mo.—32 attacks
8) Baltimore, Md. and Sacramento, Calif.—29 attacks apiece
9) Houston, Texas and Minneapolis, Minn.—27 attacks apiece
10) Cleveland and Dayton, Ohio—26 attacks apiece
11) Buffalo and Brooklyn, N.Y.—24 attacks apiece
12) Denver, Colo.—23 attacks
13) Dallas, Texas and Tacoma, Wash.—21 attacks apiece
14) Wichita, Kan.—20 attacks
State Farm® publishes a list of the top ten states with the most claims for dog bites the previous year. The states that, made the list in 2012 were:
1) California—451 claims worth $17.1 million
2) Illinois—337 claims worth $9 million
3) Texas—236 claims worth $4.3 million
4) Ohio—235 claims worth $5 million
5) Pennsylvania—165 claims worth $4.5 million
6) Michigan—151 claims worth $4.6 million
7) Indiana—148 claims worth $2.7 million
8) Florida—123 claims worth $7.1 million
9) Georgia—121 claims worth $3.3 million
10) New York—116 claims worth $6.4 million
AVMA Dog Bite Prevention Resources
The AVMA offers a wealth of information on preventing dog bites on its website, including brochures, a video, The Blue Dog Parent Guide and CD, podcasts and many other materials to teach people of all ages how to prevent dog bites.
Here are some simple tips from the AVMA that could help prevent a dog bite:
●Don’t run past a dog. Dogs naturally love to chase and catch things.
●Never disturb a dog that is caring for puppies, sleeping or eating.
●If a dog approaches to sniff you, stay still. In most cases, the dog will go away when it determines you are not a threat.
●If you are threatened by a dog, remain calm. Don’t scream or yell. If you say anything, speak calmly and firmly. Avoid eye contact. Try to stay still until the dog leaves, or back away slowly until the dog is out of sight. Don’t turn and run.
●If you fall or are knocked to the ground, curl into a ball with your hands over your head and neck. Protect your face.
Visit AVMA’s dog bite prevention webpage.