According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, there are more than 4.5 million reported dog bites every year, with 20% of all victims requiring medical attention. This means that a lot of expensive dog bite claims have been filed over the last several years. In fact, the AVMA states that the average claim payment by insurers for the year 2015 was over $37,000.

So how can you avoid being held liable for one of these claims? There are a few easy tips that dog owners can follow to help prevent dog attack and a bite injury that they may be held responsible for.

Train Your Dog Not to be Possessive

A large number of dog bites are caused by a dog being possessive over something, including food, toys, territory, or even its owners or family. This type of aggression is commonly found in herding or guard breeds, but can emerge in nearly any dog breed. Training your dog not to be territorial or possessive starts at a young age, but following a few extra steps (such as making your dog sit and wait while you put their food bowl down) go a long way in preventing a lot of aggressive behaviors.

Spay or Neuter Your Pet

If you do not intend to breed your dog, having them spayed or neutered is not only responsible, but decreases the risk of a bite. Many dogs can become aggressive when they are in heat or caring for young pups, even towards their own family members. Having them spayed or neutered removes some of these aggressive behaviors and gives them a generally more even temperament.

Socialize Your Dog

Taking your dog on walks, trips to the dog park, in the car when you run errands, and many other places exposes them to many different, sights, sounds, smells, and gets them more comfortable with being around strange dogs and faces. While it’s important not to overwhelm them, particularly at a young age, lots of consistent socialization makes them far less likely to act aggressively towards someone they do not know, which means they will be far less likely to bite.

If you or a loved one have suffered from a dog bite injury, it’s important that you seek medical attention as soon as possible, and then contact a North Carolina injury Attorney. At The Law Office of Donald R Strickland, we offer experienced counsel with a long list of proven results to help you obtain compensation for your injuries. Our team has earned several prestigious honors, including an AV® Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell® and being named one of the Best Law Firms by U.S. News & World Reportfor the 2017 year.Learn more about how we can help you! Call The Law Office of Donald R Strickland today at (919) 828-4357.