Children and dogs can be the best of friends, but without proper knowledge the friendship can end. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention about 3.5 million children are bitten by dogs on an annual basis.
Most child victims are under 9 years old. Kids under 7 are 66% more likely to experience severe injuries to the face, head, and neck, as their height is around the dog’s head.
Even though most children who are attacked are under 9, the majority of dog bite prevention programs are created for those over 8.
The American Humane’s KIDS (Kids Interacting with Dogs Safely) project includes a classroom curriculum as well as an instructional and entertaining DVD.
The program is designed to:
- Effectively address dog bite issues facing our nation
- Target children who are 4 to 9 years old
- Meet national education standards
- Meet the “character lesson” standards that are part of the national mandate for schools
- Teach younger children how to be safe around all dogs, including those they are familiar with, without contributing to or instilling fear
- Use children’s natural affection for pets to foster empathy to potentially avoid dangerous situations
Dog bite prevention programs are important for community leaders and school officials to consider implementing in attempts to reduce the number of dog bites and attacks within the community.