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Any Dog Can Bite. Here’s How You Can Prevent It | I'm Not a Monster

A really good article on how to prevent dog bites. Should be required reading for all dog owners. I especially liked the end part, about what supervision of dog/children interactions really means.

One question though, in the beginning it said that elderly people are second most likely to be bitten, but I don't understand why that would be.
 

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Esquire Golden Retrievers
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It's a nice article and good reading. But I still think the title is something of a misnomer. Sure, if you invent a wacky enough situation any dog might bite. With my dog, if you're trying to hack off his leg with a meat cleaver and he can't get away from you, guess what? He might bite! But there are dogs who in realistic situations that actually occur -- kids pulling tails, tugging on ears, trying to ride the dog, taking possessions away, stepping over the dog, invading his territory -- who will not bite. And in fact, that's one of the reasons so many people look for well-bred Golden Retrievers: a Golden with a proper temperament won't bite in those situations.

I'd say that most of the reasons given in that article for dogs biting are actually behavioral or temperament problems (e.g., resource guarding, no bite inhibition, etc.), and indicate a dog in need of special training, socialization or accommodation. For all intents and purposes, and in the absence of some very unlikely scenario, there are tons of great dogs (many of them Goldens) who will not bite. Who are trustworthy, sometimes to their own detriment. Who are smart enough to know the difference between an accident or a precious child and an actual threat.

Not to start a big debate again, because I think the article is basically good. But I think dogs get a bad rap.
 

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Very good article. I'm wondering if the thing about elderly people is that with more fragile skin they're more likely to be injured or be "bitten" by what a younger person would consider to be the dog being playful, things like mouthing and jumping. I recall reading that a scratch which breaks the skin can be considered a dog bite.
 
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Noreaster
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Not to be size-ist but I'm wondering if it's partially because older people are more likely to be around small dogs? I can't find it now, but I read an article the other day that chihuahuas, dachshunds, and the other toy breeds may be actually more likely to bite than the usual suspects of larger size, but because they're small, they don't inflict as much damage and so the bites go unreported.

I love those cartoons, especially the one about staring them in the eyes. My BC mix has really unusual eyes and people always want to stare at them, which makes him distinctly nervous. Not to mention my well-meaning neighbor, whose first greeting to him was to grab him by the sides of the face, stare into his eyes, and kiss him on the top of the head. Now I step in front of him and then click him into a down before it gets that far!
 
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It's a nice article and good reading. But I still think the title is something of a misnomer. Sure, if you invent a wacky enough situation any dog might bite. With my dog, if you're trying to hack off his leg with a meat cleaver and he can't get away from you, guess what? He might bite! But there are dogs who in realistic situations that actually occur -- kids pulling tails, tugging on ears, trying to ride the dog, taking possessions away, stepping over the dog, invading his territory -- who will not bite. And in fact, that's one of the reasons so many people look for well-bred Golden Retrievers: a Golden with a proper temperament won't bite in those situations.

I'd say that most of the reasons given in that article for dogs biting are actually behavioral or temperament problems (e.g., resource guarding, no bite inhibition, etc.), and indicate a dog in need of special training, socialization or accommodation. For all intents and purposes, and in the absence of some very unlikely scenario, there are tons of great dogs (many of them Goldens) who will not bite. Who are trustworthy, sometimes to their own detriment. Who are smart enough to know the difference between an accident or a precious child and an actual threat.

Not to start a big debate again, because I think the article is basically good. But I think dogs get a bad rap.
Even a well bred Golden with a proper temperament might have a sore paw and if you step on it, there's a chance of being bitten. Never assume they won't.
 

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Esquire Golden Retrievers
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Even a well bred Golden with a proper temperament might have a sore paw and if you step on it, there's a chance of being bitten. Never assume they won't.
Right. If I step on an unknown Golden with a sore paw I stand a chance that it might bite me.
 
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With my dog, if you're trying to hack off his leg with a meat cleaver and he can't get away from you, guess what? He might bite!
Yep. That's how my previous dog, Amber, was. I can't imagine her biting ever, even with the meat cleaver in hand.

Maddie is another story. I don't think she would bite a person but she is a more edgy. She loves people but is a tiny bit nervous.

On the other hand, Amber, as a teeny four month old pup, would resource guard and Maddie has always been willing to share any and all food with humans.
 
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Overall a good article. Should be required reading for parents....SUPERVISE YOUR KIDS! Don't allow them to run up, squealing and shouting, and grab my dog or jump on him. It's just not nice.
Will he bite? I can't imagine that he would. But it's still not fair to subject him to that. He relies on me to protect and defend him, and protecting him from annoying children is really important.
I often think when kids coming running up to Tito (who looks like a teddy bear, I'll grant you that) shouting and squealing, and jump all over him, that the parents would FREAK if my dog ran up to their kids, barking, and jumped all over THEM.
 

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Overall a good article. Should be required reading for parents....SUPERVISE YOUR KIDS! Don't allow them to run up, squealing and shouting, and grab my dog or jump on him. It's just not nice.
Will he bite? I can't imagine that he would. But it's still not fair to subject him to that. He relies on me to protect and defend him, and protecting him from annoying children is really important.
I often think when kids coming running up to Tito (who looks like a teddy bear, I'll grant you that) shouting and squealing, and jump all over him, that the parents would FREAK if my dog ran up to their kids, barking, and jumped all over THEM.
You would be amazed at how fast my hand comes up and I yell, "STOP!" I don't care if the parents don't like it, I won't allow kids to run up to Max like that. He doesn't care, but they need to learn not to do that to a strange dog and if the parents won't teach them, someone has to. I'm not normally one to interfere or tell a parent how to parent, but this is one case where I will.
 

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Me too. I don't get why parents think it's *adorable* when their offspring are mutilating my dog. It's not cute. Not at all.
 

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I think that a lot of people have little to no dog sense and don't recognize the following as signs that a dog is one step away from a bite. Most of them are very subtle to the average person. I hate, hate, HATE seeing pictures on facebook and plastered all over the Internet of a giggling toddler hanging off of a poor dog who is clearly NOT enjoying having his fur pulled by sticky fingers.

Taken from the article:

Signs that you should take very seriously that indicate that the dog is saying “I have been very patient with this child, but I am nearing the end of my patience”, include:
The dog gets up and moves away from the child
The dog turns his head away from the child
The dog looks at you with a pleading expression
You can see the “whites” of the dogs eyes, in a half moon shape
The dog yawns while the child approaches or is interacting with him
The dog licks his chops while the child approaches or is interacting with him
The dog suddenly starts scratching, biting or licking himself
The dog does a big “wet dog shake” after the child stops touching him
- See more at: Any Dog Can Bite. Here’s How You Can Prevent It | I'm Not a Monster
 

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Dog "bites" also include when you're rolling the ball on the floor and you fake right and the dog happens to go the same way and you collide. And when the dog drops the mitten he's carrying and as you pick it up your hand scrapes against his smiling 3 month old puppy razor tooth on the way up. Yep, hospital ER files a bite report for ANY break of the skin cause by a dog NO MATTER how it happened.

I would think 50% of dog bites are owners playing with their dogs.
 

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Anne
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Overall a good article. Should be required reading for parents....SUPERVISE YOUR KIDS! Don't allow them to run up, squealing and shouting, and grab my dog or jump on him. It's just not nice.
Will he bite? I can't imagine that he would. But it's still not fair to subject him to that. He relies on me to protect and defend him, and protecting him from annoying children is really important.
I often think when kids coming running up to Tito (who looks like a teddy bear, I'll grant you that) shouting and squealing, and jump all over him, that the parents would FREAK if my dog ran up to their kids, barking, and jumped all over THEM.
Absolutely. It all comes down to respect, and children need to be taught to have respect for dogs. To me, it's not even all about preventing bites, but with how they should be taught to treat and interact with another living being. As others here have also posted, I interfere if/as necessary in order to prevent these types of behaviours, since if the parents aren't going to supervise their children and teach them to behave appropriately around dogs, I will.

And those supposedly "cute" pictures of kids sitting on dogs, etc. just make me cringe. :no:
 

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Mercy Miracle (M&M)
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I will have to say I agree. I want Mercy to live up to her name and be patient with children. I have had to discipline my son lately for incorrectly interacting with Mercy. I am Mercy's advocate. I pray that in the event my son gets to her before I tan his behind that Mercy is patient with him and "merciful" with him and gracious towards him and doesn't bite him. However, Mercy has snapped at him once in response to his teasing and I am teaching him as best as I can to play nice with Mercy and be nice to her and be really be a good friend to her. I understand why she feels the need to defend herself. I am passionate about using Mercy to be a comforting cheerful friend to hurting children, so I cannot afford for her to be uncomfortable with children who are behaving around her and handling her properly even while hugging her as well. I have had to tell children whom I am happy to let love on Mercy to be gentle with her a couple of times. I can understand through why dogs bite children though. Mercy's a sweet loving dog, but she is not gonna tolerate people (or dogs) picking on her.
 

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Mercy Miracle (M&M)
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Overall a good article. Should be required reading for parents....SUPERVISE YOUR KIDS! Don't allow them to run up, squealing and shouting, and grab my dog or jump on him. It's just not nice.
Will he bite? I can't imagine that he would. But it's still not fair to subject him to that. He relies on me to protect and defend him, and protecting him from annoying children is really important.
I often think when kids coming running up to Tito (who looks like a teddy bear, I'll grant you that) shouting and squealing, and jump all over him, that the parents would FREAK if my dog ran up to their kids, barking, and jumped all over THEM.
When I was in the botanical garden in Florida, I saw some Goldens that I wanted to say hello to. I had my husband hold my son's hand while I went over to say hello. I don't want my son to even have a remote possibility of getting into trouble with another dog.
 

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When a kid comes up and asks, "can I pet your dog?" and Max is already sitting and wiggling because he loves kids, I always say yes, and I thank the kid for asking and tell him or her that I'm really happy that they know how to approach a dog. I thank the parents for teaching their kids the right way to do it.

I too cringe at those photos of kids pulling up the dog's lip and standing on the dog, and I tell people who post them why it makes me crazy.
 
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